For centuries, the Norwegian Björndal family has been gaining wealth and prestige, painstakingly conquering farm land on nature to make their estate Björndal the envy of all the region, ...
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For centuries, the Norwegian Björndal family has been gaining wealth and prestige, painstakingly conquering farm land on nature to make their estate Björndal the envy of all the region, while their proud rivals, the noble von Gall family on the castle Borkland, lost fortune. The Björndal patriarch Dag Sr., scarred in the face during a bear kill, has two sons: his fierce first-born favorite Tore shares his love for taunting the von Galls, while the gentle Dag Jr. rather enjoys the silence of the forest. When Tore seems to court the equally proud and stubborn Elisabeth von Gall, she makes her military suitor Lt. Margas challenge him to a duel- Tore, armed only with his coach whip, is pierced by his saber and his corps carried away by the river; now Elisabeth turns away from him. Even a month later Dag Sr. refuses to believe the missing Tore must be dead. Hunting the last bear, Dag Jr. loses his rifle and is badly wounded killing the beast with his knife; Adelheid and her father, retired... Written by
Family feuds, nature, destructive jealousy, waterfalls, you name it, it is here in this well-done adaptation of the Trygve Gulbranssen novel. You have to be a fan of this trashy literature to fully appreciate the film, but both Paul May and the cast took it seriously and do a convincing job. There are some scenes (Like the transport of the trees via the waterfall) that make this a slightly above-average film; the cinematography of the countryside, the mountains and the waterfall is nice, but indoor cinematography is mainly flat. Gert Fröbe is fine as Old Dag, which part is the best written; other parts are too shallow.
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