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The Fighting Kentuckian (1949)

Following Napoleon's Waterloo defeat and the exile of his officers and their families from France, the U.S.Congress, in 1817, granted four townships in the Alabama territory to the exiles. ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Philip Dorn ...
...
Willie Paine
...
Ann Logan
...
Blake Randolph
Hugo Haas ...
Gen. Paul De Marchand
...
George Hayden
Odette Myrtil ...
Madame De Marchand
...
Beau Merritt
...
Sister Hattie
Jack Pennick ...
Capt. Dan Carroll
Mickey Simpson ...
Jacques
...
Carter Ward
Mabelle Koenig ...
Marie
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Storyline

Following Napoleon's Waterloo defeat and the exile of his officers and their families from France, the U.S.Congress, in 1817, granted four townships in the Alabama territory to the exiles. Led by Colonel Georges Geraud and General Paul DeMarchand, the struggling settlers have made a thriving community, called Demopolis, by the summer of 1819. On a shopping trip to Mobile, Fleurette DeMarchand, the General's daughter, meets John Breen, a Kentucky rifleman, who detours his regiment through Demopolis to court her. But Fleurette, despite her wish to marry for love, must bow to the needs of her fellow exiles, who are at the mercy of the rich and wealthy Blake Randolph, and who wants her as his bride. But John Breen has no intention of allowing that to happen, resigns from his regiment, and takes up the fight against Randolph and his hirelings. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

ROUGHER, TOUGHER, MORE ROMANTIC THAT EVER! (original and reissue posters)


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 September 1949 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Strange Caravan  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John Wayne later blamed the poor critical response to the movie on co-star Vera Ralston. He said, "Yates [Republic Pictures studio chief Herbert J. Yates] made me use Vera Hruba [Republic star Vera Ralston, who was also Yates' mistress] . . . I've always been mad at Yates about this, because we lost the chance to have one damn fine movie." See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the final battle, Fleurette runs out to give a weapon to John Breen. She brings neither a shot pouch or powder horn. Breen is also carrying neither of these items. However, he is somehow able to reload and fire the musket a number of times thereafter. See more »

Quotes

Beau Merritt: [holding up a glass] Have a shot?
John Breen: [holding up his wounded arm] Just had one.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The John Wayne Anthology (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

Let Me Down, Oh Hangman
(uncredited)
Traditional
Music Arranged by George Antheil
New Lyrics by George Waggner
See more »

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User Reviews

Grapes and olives don't fare well in Alabama

In 1817, following a land-grant Act of Congress, written to aide Napoleon-supporters in the War of 1812, 340 French families settled on four townships in Alabama. They arrived in Mobile, Alabama on the ship "McDonough" and made their headquarters in a small community named "White Bluff." A year later, with the community developed into a thriving village by their labors, they renamed it "Demopolis," an ancient Greek name meaning "City of the People." These Napoleonic exiles chose not to give it a French name that would recall their native land.

These cultured colonists, from the drawing rooms and military heritage of the old French aristocracy, were likely the least-prepared of any of the immigrant groups who settled the American wilderness, and soon found themselves pioneering the rugged interior of Alabama with illiterate traders, squatters and Indians for their neighbors. They called themselves "The Association of French Emigrants for the Cullivation of the Vine and Olive", but their attempt at olive and grape culture was a complete failure. The Indians taught them how to grow corn and beans, but when they discovered that through a surveying error they inadvertently had built their city outside the chartered boundaries, they drifted away, either returning to France or settling in Mobile or New Orleans. But Napoleon was no great hand when it came to reading maps and recognizing boundaries, either.

Director/writer George Waggner took the surveying mistake and converted it to a land-grab scheme, threw in a motley group of rugged Kentucky militiamen, returning from the Battle of New Orleans, used the most diverse cast in any of the American-frontier films from Republic...and then tossed in ten pounds of plot into a five-pound container. Most of which worked. Aside from the thematic song, a traditional called "Kentucky Marching Song", in which he wrote new lyrics to go with George Anthiel's arrangement. Neither of which, apparently, spent much time on the writing or the arranging.


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