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Joseph M. Newman
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The story of president Andrew Jackson from his early years, the film begins when he meets Rachel Donaldson Robards. The plot concentrates on the scandal concerning the legality of their ... See full summary »
When the great potato famine hits Ireland, the diaspora begins as thousands emigrate. Among those leaving the Emerald Isle is Katie O'Neill and her husband, who decide that the promised land is South Africa and make their way there. Once there, they discover the hardships that are the reality of the homesteader experience. To complicate matters, Katie meets up with the love of her life, Paul van Riebeck. Will there be betrayal on the veldt? Written by
I have no idea what anyone was thinking when this film was done. I am a huge fan of Tyrone Power but I can't say he was very good in this. I honestly don't think it was his fault. The script was rotten.
First of all, the beginning scenes, showing the romance between Katie and Paul, seemed totally like they were from another film and just slapped on at the beginning. Incredibly disjointed. I could never figure Katie out, nor did I want to. People compare the role to Scarlett O'Hara, and I guess there were similarities. I think one of the problems is that we didn't see enough of their characters before they hit South Africa so the love story could really develop for the audience. He kissed her on the staircase. Okay, so what then? "Was I just some girl you kiss and leave?" she asks. Is that all he did? Or did he have sex with her and leave? Hello, it makes a big difference. It seemed to me that all she did was throw herself at him, and I never got the impression that he loved her. Good case in point was the scene where her neck and shoulders were sore and she was stretching, etc. It took him about an hour to take the hint.
Her abuse of the Richard Egan character was ridiculous. One ends up losing respect for both of them.
Henry King usually does a great job, and of course, the action scenes are very stirring, but the characters all seemed remote.
It's possible Fox did this movie to use blocked funds in Africa. I can't think of any other reason. I read on this board that Victor Mature was supposed to play Kurt. Well, Robert Mitchum was supposed to play Paul, but he wisely never showed up and the studio got Power, who was in a hurry to finish up his contract with that place. Filming had already started. Mitchum would have seemed even less interested in Katie, and Victor Mature would have come off as even more of a fool, so it probably worked out for the best. Well, it did for those actors, anyway.
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