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The Shepherd of the Hills (1941)

Approved  |   |  Adventure, Drama, Western  |  18 July 1941 (USA)
7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 1,152 users  
Reviews: 26 user | 12 critic

A mysterious stranger arrives in the Missouri hills and befriends a young backwoods girl. Much to the dislike of her moonshiner fiancé who has vowed to find and kill his own father.

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(novel), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Betty Field ...
...
...
James Barton ...
Samuel S. Hinds ...
...
Granny Becky
...
Wash Gibbs
...
Pete Matthews
...
Coot Royal
Fuzzy Knight ...
Mr. Palestrom
Tom Fadden ...
Jim Lane
Olin Howland ...
Corky
...
Elvy
Virita Campbell ...
Baby
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Storyline

Young Matt Masters, an Ozark Mountains moonshiner, hates the father he has never seen, who apparently deserted Matt's mother and left her to die. His obsession contributes to the hatred rampant in the mountains. However, the arrival of a stranger, Daniel Howitt, begins to positively affect the mountain people, who learn to shed their hatred under his gentle influence. Still, Matt does not quite trust Howitt..... Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Fury in the wild Ozarks! Hatred unleashed on the "Trail of the Lonsome Pine"!


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

18 July 1941 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Destino de sangre  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Riding on his horse, Matt Matthews (John Wayne) whistles a traditional English folk tune "The Cuckoo" having been identified by the captions as such. The title of the song has multiple variations, including The Coo-Coo, The Coo-Coo Bird, The Cuckoo Bird, and The Cuckoo Is A Pretty Bird. Lyrics usually include the line (or a slight variation): "The cuckoo is a pretty bird, she sings as she flies; she brings us glad tidings, and she tells us no lies." According to Thomas Goldsmith of The Raleigh News & Observer, the Cuckoo" descended from an old folk ballad; the singer "relates his desires - to gamble, to win, to regain love's affection." See more »

Goofs

With both shootings later in the film there is absolutely no trace of blood. This is particularly surprising in the first case which is at point-blank range. See more »

Quotes

Young Matt: The bigger the man, the deeper the imprint. And when he's in love, he suffers knowing it's a dead end.
See more »

Connections

Remake of The Shepherd of the Hills (1928) See more »

Soundtracks

Wiegenlied
(uncredited)
Music by Johannes Brahms
See more »

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User Reviews

Fine character study
28 February 1999 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Fine adaptation of Harold Bell Wright's novel; lots of Hollywood character actors in this one. Marjorie Main, Fuzzy Knight, Ward Bond, John Qualen, and a whole slew of others.

John Wayne plays the son of a woman wronged, at least in the eyes of the Ozarks people, whose only purpose in life is to kill the father that disgraced his mother and himself. Harry Carey Sr. plays the stranger, Mr. Howitt, who comes to the hills and leaves nothing but kindness and friendship in his wake. Betty Field is luminous as the girl who loves Wayne, but can't stop him from avenging his mother's disgrace. Beulah Bondi is Wayne's bitter and self-deceiving aunt, who raised him after his mother's death, and continually feeds his hate for his father. Marc Lawrence is the revelation in this film; known mostly for gangster roles, he is marvelous as the handicapped cousin of Wayne, and the catalyst for Bondi's eventual repentance.

A wonderful, period film in gorgeous color, with a beautiful soundtrack. Harry Carey is so good in this that I'm surprised he isn't a more well known actor.


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