In Shenandoah, Virginia, widower farmer Charlie Anderson lives a peaceful life with his six sons - Jacob, James, Nathan, John, Henry and Boy, his daughter Jennie, and his daughter-in-law ... See full summary »
This is the story of David Marshall 'Marsh' Williams, the real life inventor of the world famous M-1 Carbine automatic rifle used in WWII. It all started when Marsh, who was one to do things his way, was caught distilling moonshine, and was accused and convicted of shooting a federal officer in the process. This at first placed him in the chain gang which labeled him as a hard case. Later, to make room for those more deserving, he was moved to a prison farm, where he came under the direction of Captain H.T. Peoples. The Captain was a mild mannered warden, who did not shy from discipline when necessary, but also believed that given the opportunity, most men will respond to good. Believing that Marsh was just such a person, the Captain gave him every opportunity to reform, so much so, that he eventually allowed Marsh to work in the tool shop on his spare time to develop and build by hand, a working rifle, inside the prison farm itself. Written by
Bill Walch <TheWalchs@aol.com>
James Stewart actively sought the lead role, despite being too old for it, because the film reflected his right-wing views. See more »
At the beginning of the film - The March, 1951 issue of Reader's Digest published an article in its series. "The Most Unforgettable Character I've Met." That character is David Marshall Williams - and this is his story. He lived it. See more »
"Graceful" is not a word one would use in the same sentence with "Jimmy Stewart." Gangly, awkward, and with a reedy, high-pitched voice, he seems to have none of the things that we think an actor should have, and yet he was truly one of the great ones. His presence in this true story of David Marshall Williams, designer of the M-1 rifle, lifts what is a fascinating human story to begin with by a quantum notch. Stewart's portrayal of the character transformation of this angry, troubled man is one of the finest things I have seen from him. Abetted by Wendell Corey in the essential role of his prison warden and an excellent script, this movie is truly an underrated gem. They just don't make 'em like Jimmy anymore.
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