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All those nights I was away from the farm, I dreamed of nothing but being up here. Place all fixed up and you waiting for me as I came up the trail. It's ours, Lissy. Nothing's gonna keep us from having it now.
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"The Romance of Rosy Ridge" surprised me a bit. While I assumed it would be a pretty good film given its cast, it turned out to be even better. It's a wonderful little film and I strongly recommend you see it.
The film is set in Missouri 1965--just after the Civil War. Rosy Ridge is a sad community because it was a divided town in a border state and folks fought on both sides during the war. Because of this, there is still a lot of acrimony among the locals--with someone burning barns of the ex-Confederates. One guy, Gill MacBean (Thomas Mitchell) has vowed NEVER to have anything to do with anyone who fought for the Union.
One day, a stranger, Henry Carson (Van Johnson) wanders by the MacBean farm. While Gill isn't very friendly, the rest of the family invites the man in for dinner and soon he ends up staying for some time. Now this stranger isn't a freeloader--he works very hard around the place and he's also very likable. However, when it comes to politics, he says very little and Gill cannot figure out which side this young man might have fought for in the war. If he is a Yankee, this is a serious problem for Gill, as his daughter, Lissy (Janet Leigh--in her first film) is falling for Henry. There is MUCH more to the film than this--but frankly it's better if you just see it for yourself. Suffice to say, there isn't much not to like about this film. The acting is very nice (particular by Johnson), the script superb (offering lots of twists and a wonderful surprise ending) and it's a nice look at American history. Exceptional.
By the way, although it's not the same, you do wonder if the film was the inspiration for the "Andy Griffith Show" episode "A Stranger in Town" as there are some similarities.
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