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Sutter's Gold (1936)

 -  Western  -  1 March 1936 (USA)
6.1
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Ratings: 6.1/10 from 57 users  
Reviews: 3 user

Story of the gold strike on an immigrant's property that started the 1849 California Gold Rush.

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Title: Sutter's Gold (1936)

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Johan (John) Sutter
...
Pete Perkin
Binnie Barnes ...
Countess Elizabeth Bartoffski
Katharine Alexander ...
Anna Sutter
Montagu Love ...
Capt. Kettleson
Addison Richards ...
James Marshall
John Miljan ...
Gen. Juan Bautista Alvarado
...
William Janney ...
John Sutter Jr.
Nan Grey ...
Ann Eliza Sutter
Robert Warwick ...
Gen. Alexander Rotscheff
Morgan Wallace ...
General Fremont
Allen Vincent ...
Juan Bautista Alvarado Jr.
Mitchell Lewis ...
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Storyline

Story of the gold strike on an immigrant's property that started the 1849 California Gold Rush.

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Genres:

Western

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 March 1936 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Conquista do Ouro  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was reportedly Universal's biggest box office disaster of the era. It cost $2,000,000 in 1936 when the typical Universal production cost about $100,000. See more »

Connections

Edited into Mutiny on the Blackhawk (1939) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Plodding Biopic That Sunk Carl Laemmle
5 September 2013 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

This interminable biopic of the Californian pioneer John Sutter demonstrates just how important Preston Sturgess' screenplay was to the artistic success of 'Diamond Jim' Universal's similarly lavish biopic, also starring Edward Arnold, of the previous year. Where Sturgess made the most of that story's rough edges, the cavalcade of writers who worked on this (rarely a good sign) not only sand them off but substitute some very dull fiction in place of fact.

Production values are high - they could not help but be, given the film's massive budget - and under the direction of James Cruze, famous for his nation-building epics of the silent era, visuals are impressive. None of this can overcome a plodding, overlong and exposition-laden script, in which characters tell us exactly who they are and how they feel at every possible moment.

Edward Arnold gives a sincere performance in the title role and certainly looks the part, but Binnie Barnes sleepwalks through her role as his love interest. At the other end of the scale, Lee Tracy hams it up as Sutter's right hand man, particularly in the later scenes as his character ages.

The bare bones of the story are not uninteresting, but they're conveyed in such an uninspiring fashion that you never come to care for Sutter, his vast ambitions, or his downfall.

The financial failure of this film is often cited as having sealed the fate of Universal Pictures head Carl Laemmle and his son, Carl Jr. By the end of this, you might wish you were the one who signed the termination letter.


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