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The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948)

Approved | | Adventure, Drama, Western | 24 January 1948 (USA)
Fred Dobbs and Bob Curtin, two Americans searching for work in Mexico, convince an old prospector to help them mine for gold in the Sierra Madre Mountains.

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(screenplay), (based on the novel by)
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Top Rated Movies #118 | Won 3 Oscars. Another 12 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
McCormick (as Barton Mac Lane)
...
Arturo Soto Rangel ...
Presidente (as A. Soto Rangel)
Manuel Dondé ...
El Jefe (as Manuel Donde)
José Torvay ...
Pablo (as Jose Torvay)
Margarito Luna ...
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Storyline

Fred C. Dobbs and Bob Curtin, both down on their luck in Tampico, Mexico in 1925, meet up with a grizzled prospector named Howard and decide to join with him in search of gold in the wilds of central Mexico. Through enormous difficulties, they eventually succeed in finding gold, but bandits, the elements, and most especially greed threaten to turn their success into disaster. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They sold their souls for... See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

24 January 1948 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Treasure of Sierra Madre  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John Huston at the time had not been married very long to Evelyn Keyes, who he constantly belittled and humiliated on the location shoot. Eventually Keyes returned to Hollywood to shoot another picture. During this time Huston decided that he wanted to adopt a little orphan boy called Pablo who had been hanging around the set. Keyes first got wind of this when she greeted Huston and Pablo at the airport upon their return from Mexico. See more »

Goofs

In an early scene when Dobbs is getting a haircut, an automobile flashes past the window of the barbershop. It appears to be a late 1940s sedan. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Dobbs: Say buddy, will you stake a fellow Am...
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Biography: Humphrey Bogart (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Believe Me If All Those Endearing Young Charms
(1808) (uncredited)
Music traditional
Played on harmonica by Walter Huston
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Truly something special
3 June 2004 | by (Washington, DC) – See all my reviews

This film made a huge impression on me when I first saw it at the age of 15 or 16. A recent rewatching on DVD really served to bring home for me what makes this film so special.

The whole thing is quite good, but it really hits you when Howard goes off to celebrate with the Indians, leaving Dobbs and Curtin to care for his gold and burros. The ensuing scenes of their spiraling mistrust and tension are absolutely spellbinding--the kind of thing that makes you lean forward in your seat just to get your eyes a little closer to the raw humanity unfolding in front of you. Their paranoia, the way you can SEE scenarios of betrayal dancing in their eyes, Dobbs' burgeoning madness--these are the moments that make this film one for the ages.

At its best, film noir (which this most certainly is--Western surroundings or no) makes the viewer complicit in the evil depicted on screen. We find ourselves scheming and plotting in our heads along with the unsavory characters we are watching--we start to feel the same temptations and desires that they do. "Treasure of the Sierra Madre" accomplishes this bond with the audience as well as any film you are likely to see.

A magnificent film--one of the few great screen tragedies.


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