The Shiloh Ranch in Wyoming Territory of the 1890s is owned in sequence by Judge Garth, the Grainger brothers, and Col. MacKenzie. It is the setting for a variety of stories, many more ... See full summary »
Celestine, the chamber-maid, has a new job in the country, at the Lanlaires. She has decided to use her beauty to seduce a wealthy man, but Mr. Lanlaire is not a right choice: the house is ... See full summary »
With thousands of cattle being rustled from White Sage ranch the 1930's Texas Rangers are called in. They manage to get one of their agents into the gang by making them think he is the Pecos Kid on the lam.
Arriving at Medicine Bow, eastern schoolteacher Molly Woods meets two cowboys, irresponsible Steve and the "Virginian," who gets off on the wrong foot with her. To add to his troubles, the Virginian finds that his old pal Steve is mixed up with black-hatted Trampas and his rustlers...then finds himself at the head of a posse after said rustlers; and Molly hates the violent side of frontier life. Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
One of over 700 Paramount productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. It received its first telecast in Philadelphia Monday 2 March 1959 on WCAU (Channel 10), followed by St. Louis 25 April 1959 on KMOX (Channel 4), by Chicago 6 May 1959 on WBBM (Channel 2), by Los Angeles 20 February 1960 on KNXT (Channel 2), by New York City 30 July 1960 on WCBS (Channel 2), and by San Francisco 9 May 1961 on KPIX (Channel 5). At this time, color broadcasting was in its infancy, limited to only a small number of high rated programs, primarily on NBC and NBC affiliated stations, so most vintage film showings were still in B&W. Viewers were not offered the opportunity to see these films in their original Technicolor until several years later. It was released on DVD 31 March 2011 as part of the Universal Vault Series, and again on 12 March 2013 as part of Universal's Classic Westerns: 10-Movie Collection; since that time, it's also been aired occasionally on both Turner Classic Movies and Encore's Western Channel. See more »
One-dimensional western based on famous western novel...
The best thing about THE VIRGINIAN is the pretty school teacher played by Barbara Britton, and very convincingly too. Shortly upon her arrival in town she's met by two cowboy friends, Sonny Tufts and Joel McCrea. As is standard for many a western, at first she and The Virginian (Joel McCrea) don't get on--sort of like an earlier screen western starring Errol Flynn and Olivia de Havilland ("Dodge City") where they meet and fall out immediately before winding up in love before the final reel.
But, as is usual in these westerns, although she eventually falls for McCrea, she struggles against losing him in a fight with villainous Trampas (Brian Donlevy), always attired in black so we get the picture. But before the finish, she and the hero ride horseback into the setting sunset. The story has the flavor of a Zane Grey western novel, although penned by Owen Wister.
The simple tale has some nice performances from the star trio (McCrea, Britton and Tufts), but it's Fay Bainter and Henry O'Neill who give it a warm touch as a couple of homesteaders who take the schoolmarm in.
Nothing about the tale suggests why it is such a classic by Owen Wister, especially in this rather humdrum version where the most striking asset is the beautiful Technicolor scenery. The plot is slight, to say the least, and there's little punch to the predictable ending.
The only real surprise is the fact that McCrea's code of honor permits him to let his old friend hang for a rustling crime. It's the only original and surprising touch in the story.
3 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?