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This western begins with St. Louis resident Lutie Cameron (Katharine Hepburn) marrying New Mexico cattleman Col. James B. 'Jim' Brewton (Spencer Tracy) after a short courtship. When she arrives in "Salt Fork, NM" she finds that her new husband is considered by the locals to be a tyrant who uses force to keep homesteaders off the government owned land he uses for grazing his cattle--the so-called Sea of Grass. Lutie, has difficulty reconciling her husband's beliefs and passions with her own. Written by
Card at beginning: This story takes place for the most part against the background of the sea of grass - that vast grazing empire which once covered the western part of north America from the great plains to the rocky mountains, and beyond. See more »
I tuned into this film on TCM expecting to see a familiar prairie epic about Katherine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy fighting the heroic fight against the elements. What I got was a film about two flawed and vulnerable human beings who made a series of disastrously bad personal and parental decisions. Even though there was a lot of talk about Col. Brewton's (Tracy) attachment to the "grass"and being a cattleman, the story of the Brewton's failed marriage could have taken place in Baltimore. It was nice to see both Hepburn and Tracy acting in flawed ways and out of character. From the looks of it, Tracy was uncomfortable in the role. But Hepburn is the better actor here and her predicament is more poignant. It's an odd and interesting film that's well worth seeing.
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