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The True Story of Jesse James (1957)

Approved | | Action, Biography, Crime | February 1957 (USA)
The last eighteen years in the life of Jesse James, showing his home life in Missouri, his experiences with Quantrill's raiders, his career of banditry with his brother Frank and the ... See full summary »

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The most complete, newly restored version of Nicholas Ray's experimental masterpiece embodies the director's practice of film-making as a "communal way of life." Ray plays himself in the ... See full summary »

Director: Nicholas Ray
Stars: Richard Bock, Tom Farrell, Danny Fisher
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Cole Younger (as Alan Hale)
Alan Baxter ...
Barney Remington
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Rev. Jethro Bailey
Rachel Stephens ...
Anne James
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Dr. Samuel
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Barry Atwater ...
Attorney Walker
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Rowena Cobb
Chubby Johnson ...
Arkew
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Storyline

The last eighteen years in the life of Jesse James, showing his home life in Missouri, his experiences with Quantrill's raiders, his career of banditry with his brother Frank and the Younger brothers, and his attempt to lead a peaceful life after the disastrous attempt to rob the bank at Northfield, Minn. Written by Anonymous

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Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

February 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Jesse James  »

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Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John Carradine plays Rev. Bailey in this re-make. He played Robert Ford in the 1939 original production. His sons David Carradine, Keith Carradine and Robert Carradine play the Younger brothers in The Long Riders (1980), another film about the James-Younger Gang. See more »

Goofs

Modern buildings are visible in the background during the Northfield, Minnesota robbery. See more »

Connections

Remake of Jesse James (1939) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Missed opportunities all round
16 June 2008 | by (Derry, Ireland) – See all my reviews

Although the ending of this Nicholas Ray movie is very similar to Andrew Dominik's much, much finer version, (or should that be vice-versa?), there is no comparison between the two films. This is mostly a dull affair with very little of the psychological insights into troubled personalities that have distinguished Ray's best films; all the more mystifying considering the complexity of the central character.

Perhaps it was the weak casting. Robert Wagner is pretty as in pretty vacant and is totally out of his depth. (Contrast his performance with that of another 'pretty boy', Brad Pitt, in the most recent version). As his brother Frank, Jeffrey Hunter has little to do but growl on the sidelines while Hope Lange is hardly even a pretty presence as Jesse's wife. Ray also misses the opportunity to use the widescreen for dramatic effect so the movie is handsome without engaging us in any way. No one's finest hour.


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