Texas Ranger Dusty Rivers ("Isn't that a contradiction in terms?", another character asks him) travels to Canada in the 1880s in search of Jacques Corbeau, who is wanted for murder. He ... See full summary »
Texas Ranger Dusty Rivers ("Isn't that a contradiction in terms?", another character asks him) travels to Canada in the 1880s in search of Jacques Corbeau, who is wanted for murder. He wanders into the midst of the Riel Rebellion, in which Métis (people of French and Native heritage) and Natives want a separate nation. Dusty falls for nurse April Logan, who is also loved by Mountie Jim Brett. April's brother is involved with Courbeau's daughter Louvette, which leads to trouble during the battles between the rebels and the Mounties. Through it all Dusty is determined to bring Corbeau back to Texas (and April, too, if he can manage it.) Written by
Ron Kerrigan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The roaring magnificence of "Union Pacific" . . . the pulse-pounding action of "The Plainsman" . . . two surging love stories woven into an unforgettable drama of human emotions . . . told against the blazing beauty of the northern forests . . . filmed in SUPER TECHNICOLOR !
When Cecil B. DeMille started filming Northwest Mounted Police, Joel McCrea was Texas Ranger Dusty Rivers (a cowboy name if there ever was one), but after a few scenes McCrea dropped out and Gary Cooper got to do his second of four DeMille features.
It was both DeMille and Cooper's first film in technicolor and when DeMille went in for technicolor we mean bright hues of every part of the rainbow. But back then color itself was a novelty so people liked seeing it. Northwest Mounted Police also won an Oscar for best editing. Taking home the prize was Anne Bauchens who edited every single DeMille film from back into the middle silent era. DeMille had it written into his contract at Paramount that he would not do a film unless Ms. Bauchens was available to be editor. He had many of the same folks on his various films, but only Ms. Bauchens rated that kind of treatment.
Michael Medved has Northwest Mounted Police listed among the fifty worst films of all time. It's not great, but it ain't as bad as all that. The Victorian DeMille type dialog is the main reason, but it is no more present here than in any of his other sound films.
Northwest Mounted Police takes place in the mid 1880s and concerns the famous 2nd Louis Riel Rebellion and the Duck Lake massacre of Royal Canadian Mounted Police in that conflict. Grafted on to that is the story of a Texas Ranger played by Gary Cooper who comes up to Canada with a warrant for one of Riel's confederates who killed a man in his state.
Of course Cooper gets himself mixed up in the politics of the area and also considerably mixed up with Maddeleine Carroll, much to the displeasure of her sweetheart Preston Foster, as stalwart a Mountie as you'll ever find this side of Nelson Eddy. That's a standard DeMille plot device, two men in heat over the heroine.
In some considerable heat himself is Robert Preston who is Carroll's brother also a Mountie. He's got it bad for Paulette Goddard a Meti who's got it real bad for Preston. In fact her little scheme concerning Preston is what drives the action of the film in the second half.
DeMille was never an actor's director or a writer's director. But he knew how to fill the screen and keep the action going. That he does in Northwest Mounted Police.
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