In 1844, after the assassination of Mormon leader Joseph Smith by an angry mob in Illinois, the Mormons choose Brigham Young as their new leader and follow him to a new promised land in Utah.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Angus Duncan
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Eliza Kent
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Mary Ann Young
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Mary Kent (as Ann Todd)
Willard Robertson ...
Heber Kimball
Moroni Olsen ...
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Prosecutor
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Frank M. Thomas ...
Hubert Crum (as Frank Thomas)
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Storyline

The true story of the famous Mormon leader, Brigham Young and his battle to transport his people across the Rocky mountains to settle in Salt Lake City. The plot focuses on two of his people, Jonathan Kent and Zina Webb and the hardships they have to face along the way. Written by Col Needham <col@imdb.com>

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The Great American Motion Picture !


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

27 September 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Brigham Young: Frontiersman  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,700,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (FMC Library Print) | (copyright length)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Color:

(Sepiatone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to a MovieTone newsreel, the Salt Lake City premiere of Brigham Young, a month before the New York premiere, was the largest premiere in film history. 215,000 people crowded the streets of Salt Lake City to view a massive parade, complete with floats and racing cars with the stars riding in them. Twentieth Century Fox's studio head Darryl F. Zanuck, also the producer of the film, had a part in planning the parade. The Salt Lake City Mayor named that August 23rd Brigham Young Day- the first and only. Originally, one theatre in Salt Lake City was to show the film, but the demand for seats became so high that eventually seven theatres in the city showed the film. See more »

Goofs

Eliza Kent's tomb "wheel" shows she died in 1843 on the trek west. But Joseph Smith did not die until 1844 and the saints did not leave Nauvoo until 1846. See more »

Quotes

Porter Rockwell: Zigzag. That means he wants to talk peace. You zigzag out to meet him.
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Connections

Edited into The Unauthorized Hagiography of Vincent Price (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Shimalong Joe
(uncredited)
Composer unknown
Played by a band at the party and sung by Fuzzy Knight
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User Reviews

 
Powerful film, but Ty is just in it for box office
25 September 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is a wonderful movie about the struggle of the Mormons and their final settlement in Salt Lake, Utah. The beginning and the ending are especially powerful, and the message is one we all have to be reminded of - God doesn't talk, but he communicates, if we would only listen. As I am writing this in the midst of the horrors going on in New Orleans and the surrounding area due to Katrina, I was especially moved by the Mormons having to leave everything behind and move on after Joseph Smith was assassinated. People came to this country to escape religious persecution, and yet they could not. The struggle of the Mormons to cross the country, the cost in lives, the hardship they suffered was truly awe-inspiring, demonstrating their tremendous strength. As far as the actual beliefs of Mormons, this is not heavily gone into, and polygamy is mentioned but is not a centerpiece of the film at all.

The cast is top-notch, though others who have commented know more about the actual characters and can talk about how true the portrayals were. But as actors, Dean Jagger, Mary Astor, Brian Donlevy, John Carradine, Jane Darwell all do excellently with the script they were given.

Though the film could have easily stood on its own (and certainly does today) Tyrone Power and Linda Darnell were added to the cast to get the crowds into the movie theaters to see a film about the Mormons. Power is magnificently handsome as a young Mormon, and Darnell, as Zina, is not a Mormon but stays on with the family after her father is killed. Power does not have much to do until the end of the film, when he has a big scene, and Darnell (still a teenager at the time of the filming) has even less, though they make a lovely couple. Their fate is left unclear regarding her conversion, and one does wonder about the polygamy in their case. You can't beat either one for eye candy, however.


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