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|Index||13 reviews in total|
9 out of 10 people found the following review useful:
Douglas' first western and Mayo acts great and looks great., 27 November 2005
Author: tmwest from S. Paulo, Brazil
This was Kirk Douglas' first western and he did so well, that he could not stop making them after. Virginia Mayo, who used to be just another pretty woman, here, as in Colorado Territory, has a chance to show her talent and does very well, she still looks modern, when you see the film today. The story is about Kirk saving Walter Brennan from a lynch mob, and trying to get him to the nearest town without being caught by the mob. He chooses to go through the desert and falls in love with Brennan's daughter(Mayo). Raoul Walsh feels at home directing this film, he is as good as always. What I did not like about the film is the song that Douglas does not want to hear, and Brennan keeps singing, it's too sentimental and just one step from being ridiculous. Apart from that, this is an above average western
11 out of 14 people found the following review useful:
Father and son., 7 November 2004
This is the western Walsh made after "Colorado territory"("White heat"
which is "Colorado'"s follow up is a masterpiece but not a western- and
it nearly matches its brilliance.A rather short movie,it's an
action-packed story which never loses momentum.Beginning with a very
tense situation (a lynching) it remains suspenseful and absorbing all
along the great divide.The characters are wonderfully depicted and any
of them could be the subject of a movie.This is like" Colorado 's
territory" or "pursued" ,an intellectual western.The hero,Merrick
,carries the weight of his father's death.Kirk Douglas gives a fine
performance ,being in turn nice or unpleasant.What's really fascinating
is that his tragedy is about to happen again:his prisoner may be
innocent and he will have another fault on his conscience.Pop Keith
(Walter Brennan) and his daughter Ann (Virginia Mayo who was at the
time Walsh's favorite actress:she's in the two movies I mention above
as well) are an endearing couple:the girl is a strong personality -the
part was tailor-made for Mayo-while his papa is a resigned old
man,whose favorite weapon is nothing but a ditty which he knows reminds
Merrick of his past he cannot forget.One can go as far as saying that
Merrick sees Keith as a father who returned from the grave.Another
relationship father/son is also featured: Roden who demands Keith's
head because he thinks that he killed his son Ed-"I buried my heart in
the grave" he says- and his second son ,the ugly duckling.Roden speaks
of his late offspring as a perfect boy .
Walsh's movie raises many questions .Sometimes we wonder where justice really is and who is on the right side of the law.This exciting western deserves to be upgraded
9 out of 11 people found the following review useful:
"Along The Great Divide" is a great ride!, 24 May 2006
Author: jojomack33 from United States
Walter Brennen, three time Academy Award winner, and one of the greatest character actors of all time, is combined with Kirk Douglas for 88 minutes of action and drama. This is what a great Western is supposed to be! Gunfire, fistfights, and Walter Brennen almost getting his neck stretched, twice! One of my video guides says: "the pace is slow, but the scenery is grand". Most of the film was shot in the Alabama Hills, just west of Lone Pine, California. Over 300 movies have been filmed at the base of Mt. Whitney, the tallest peak in the lower 48 states. "Joe Kidd", "The Tall T" and hundreds more were made in those rocks that are so famous. Almost as famous as any actor. "Along The Great Divide" is a great ride, and lots of fun.
3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
very entertaining western, 4 August 2011
Author: william walker (email@example.com) from United States
I must say, this is one of the most entertaining westerns I have
seen.If you like multiple complicated, vacillating, personal relations
between the main actors under trying conditions, this film is for you.
I have noticed that such scenarios are a frequent feature of films
directed by the director of this film, Raoul Walsh. Examples I am
familiar with include: the John Wayne western 'Dark Command', the Clark
Gable western 'The Tall Men', and the western 'Saskatchewan'. Of
course, there is always a knockout feisty woman involved, however
unlikely. This story even more strongly resembles the John Wayne
western 'Tall in the Saddle', in that both are 'Who done it' mysteries,
in which the real murderer is not revealed until near the end. Also, in
both films, the hero has to deal with a wild cat woman who
alternatively is trying to kill him, while gradually falling in love
with him. This film also shares the theme with 'The Ox-bow Incident',
for example, that sometimes a lynching mob is going to lynch the wrong
person, whose presumed guilt is based only on circumstantial evidence,
mistaken identity or person grievances. It also illustrates the point
that sometimes a jury trial is no better than a vigilante mob,
condemning an innocent person, again, based on incomplete or faulty
information or prejudice.
Kirk Douglas, as the leading man, was one of the most charismatic actors Hollywood was fortunate to discover. Unlike many leading men, he was an excellent character actor, not just playing himself as a star, over and over. Here, he plays a sheriff who feels duty-bound to save a man from a lynching, then bring him into a distant town to stand trial, with the same probable outcome. While on the trail, it is brought out that he is haunted by a rather similar incident that resulted in his father's lynching. Walter Brennan, one of the most charismatic of Hollywood supporting actors, plays his usual role as a crusty old man, full of earthy wisdom, as well as a few foibles. Virginia Mayo shows that she could convincingly play a feisty wild cat, in contrast to her frequent roles as mostly a pretty face. She was also featured in the highly rated Raoul Walsh-directed western 'Colorado Territory'. Throw in a central jealousy between the the sons of a neighboring cattle baron, and the trials of a long dangerous journey across a nearly waterless desert, and you have the makings of a rip-roaring story.
As others have pointed out, there are a few glaring holes, improbable coincidences or implausibilities in the plot, but that is a common fault of many an entertaining film. For example, Brennan's character readily admits that that he rustled a few cows from his wealthy neighbor, but denies he killed the son sent to track him down. The emphasis throughout the film is placed on the question of his guilt regarding the murder, whereas cattle or horse stealing alone was often considered sufficient grounds for a lynching in the Wild West. Yet, Brennan's guilt as a rustler seems forgotten in the finale. Of course, once we had Douglas, Brennan and Mayo together interacting, we could guess the probable formulistic ending. Again, this was to be expected of most Hollywood films of this era, and does not really detract from the many dramas, twists, and turns, in getting to the unlikely happy ending.
5 out of 7 people found the following review useful:
desert journey, 28 April 2005
Author: RanchoTuVu from Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
A marshal has to transport an accused murderer across the desert to the nearest town to face trial. A steady tension builds up along the trail, with Kirk Douglas as the marshal and Walter Brennan as the accused. Douglas's deputies, played by John Agar and Ray Teal, both add interesting dynamics to the situation, while Virginia Mayo, as Brennan's daughter uses all of her seductive powers on Douglas in order to free her father. Followed by a posse led by a wealthy rancher who wants Brennan hung, Douglas manages to capture the rancher's son played by James Anderson, and uses him as protection to get Brennan to the town. Anderson eventually wins over deputy Teal with a promised bribe, setting up the film's best dramatic element, that of a tired Douglas alone against Brennan, Mayo, Teal, and Anderson. The beautiful desert photography augments a tense storyline that is maintained up to the conclusion, which seemed a letdown in comparison to what was so well portrayed out in the desert.
1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
The Rule of Law in the Western, 29 January 2012
Author: SmallClanger from United Kingdom
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I happened across this film whilst idly channel flipping. Although the film contains its fair share of Western clichés, it's quite a decent adventure, and Kirk Douglas turns in one of his reliable portrayals of iron-jawed integrity. The film opens with an attempted lynching, foiled by Douglas' US Marshal, and is notable for its cheering emphasis on the rule of law in the wildest of settings (compare the opening sequence of HBO's "Deadwood", pilot episode). This renders the film worthy of mention alongside rather better movies such as the original 3.10 to Yuma, and a number of John Ford Westerns. The tension between the rugged (and armed) self reliance of the frontier, and the development of civil society in (then) uncivil regions adds an interesting element to the familiar ingredients of an arduous journey, gun-play, and a predictable love story. Worth a look.
Fathers, 9 February 2012
Author: JoeytheBrit from www.moviemoviesite.com
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
A young Kirk Douglas looks a natural in the saddle in his debut
western, ably directed by the under-rated Raoul Walsh. He plays a US
Marshal who breaks up a lynching party and vows to deliver the
near-victim, a cattle rustler (Walter Brennan) suspected of murdering
the son of one of the party, to the nearest court - which just happens
to be on the other side of a desert. If that wasn't bad enough, the
father of the murdered man promises Douglas he'll never reach his
destination, and the suspect's daughter (Virginia Mayo) also does her
best to foil his plans.
The plot is bolstered by a character study which probes the relationship between father and son/daughter. Mayo's father is a decent man capable of committing petty crime to make ends meet who nevertheless commands his daughter's unwavering loyalty; the grieving father - a wealthy cattle baron - treats his surviving son like the hired help with predictable results, and Douglas is haunted by the belief that he inadvertently brought about his own father's death. It's these dynamics that drive the story, and while the inevitable climax can be guessed a good hour from the end of the film, the journey there is engrossing enough to keep the audience interested.
3 out of 6 people found the following review useful:
Determined U.S. Marshal takes rustler to justice, 17 September 1999
Author: helpless_dancer from Broken Bow, Oklahoma
Man accused of murder and rustling is taken on a perilous journey of several days duration. While on the trip to jail, the lawmen were plagued by a lynch mob, the rustler's willful daughter, and the dry, harsh terrain. After finally getting the man to trial, a final surprise awaited the marshal.
1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Disappointing western, except for Walter Brennan, 12 September 2011
Author: vincentlynch-moonoi from United States
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
A "6" from me means not a good movie. It takes a better than average
Western to interest me, and I thought this would be one. But, it
wasn't. Instead it was full of clichés (from mirages in the desert, to
waterholes that were alkali, to sandstorms...to you name it...well, at
least there weren't any rattlesnakes).
And the acting wasn't much to brag about, either. Kirk Douglas plays the US Marshall determined to take rustler (?), murderer (?) Walter Brennan to trail, rather than allow him to be lynched by the father of the man he may have killed. Pretty traditional story. Even more traditional is the silly sort-of-romance between Douglas and Brennan's daughter (Virginia Mayo).
There is one thing that sets this film apart -- a true gem of a role for Walter Brennan...and because his role is key to the plot, he gets lots of screen time here. His acting here is as prominent...perhaps more so...as in "Rio Bravo".
So, watch this film for Walter Brennan's acting. Otherwise, watch it once...but don't purchase it for your DVD shelf!
1 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
A grandiose title for a low-budget western starring Kirk Douglas..., 25 July 2011
Author: Neil Doyle from U.S.A.
The heavy-handed script of ALONG THE GREAT DIVIDE puts every possible
obstacle in the way of a saintly sheriff (KIRK DOUGLAS) intent on
bringing a suspected murderer to justice and away from the men who want
to lynch him for killing a rancher's son.
The plot gets off to a good start with a lynching interrupted by good guy Douglas, who saves the neck of WALTER BRENNAN from the hangman's noose. But the plot gets a bit too thick by the time we encounter Brennan's fiery daughter (VIRGINIA MAYO) and the bad men who want to stop Douglas and his party from reaching a town where a jury can decide Brennan's fate.
Despite the gorgeous outoor scenery filmed in crisp B&W, there's a low-budget look to the night scenes filmed on indoor stage bound sets. Director Raoul Walsh keeps things moving, but the plot is so full of tiresome obstacles and shifting loyalties that the thirsty desert scenes seem to drag as the film nears its conclusion once the party has reached civilization.
JOHN AGAR is decent enough as Douglas' ill-fated sidekick but it's JAMES ANDERSON as the no good son (brother of the man Brennan is supposed to have killed), who manages to steal scenes with his shifty manner as the villain of the piece. Too bad his career was cut short by his premature death at 48.
VIRGINIA MAYO is improbably cast and her romance with Douglas is strictly full of clichés as they fight incessantly over his intent on bringing her father to justice. The story is pretty routine and even though the running time is brief, the film runs out of steam before the party reaches its destination in a nearby village so that the finale seems anticlimactic.
It remains an average western despite the good cast.
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