IMDb > Wild River (1960)
Wild River
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Wild River (1960) More at IMDbPro »

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Wild River -- A 1930s Tennessee Valley Authority Agent is sent to oversee the completion of the Tennessee River Dam and encounters opposition from locals who do not want to leave their homes.


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Down 86% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Paul Osborn (screenplay)
William Bradford Huie (based on novels by) ...
View company contact information for Wild River on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
May 1960 (USA) See more »
The Wild Language...The Wild Hungers...The Wild Furies!
A TVA bureaucrat comes to the river to do what none of his predecessors have been able to do - evict a stubborn octogenarian from her island before the rising waters engulf her. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
2 wins & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
The traditionalist. . . the modernist. . . and a river between them. See more (42 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Montgomery Clift ... Chuck Glover

Lee Remick ... Carol Garth Baldwin

Jo Van Fleet ... Ella Garth

Albert Salmi ... Hank Bailey

Jay C. Flippen ... Hamilton Garth (as J.C. Flippen)
James Westerfield ... Cal Garth

Barbara Loden ... Betty Jackson

Frank Overton ... Walter Clark

Malcolm Atterbury ... Sy Moore
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Mark Anthony ... Night Clerk (uncredited)
Ross Apperson ... Attorney Armstrong (uncredited)
Big Jeff Bess ... Joe John Garth (uncredited)
James Campbell ... Small Role (uncredited)
Donna Carnegie ... Small Role (uncredited)

Bruce Dern ... Jack Roper (uncredited)
Mike Dodd ... Sheriff Hogue (uncredited)
John Dudley ... Todd (uncredited)
David Ferrell ... Small Role (uncredited)
James Hampton ... Small Role (uncredited)
Judy Harris ... Barbara Baldwin (uncredited)

Pat Hingle ... Narrator (voice) (uncredited)
Robert Earl Jones ... Sam Johnson (uncredited)
Jim Menard ... Jim Baldwin Jr. (uncredited)
Mark Menson ... Winters (uncredited)
Joe Penner ... Himself (archive voice) (uncredited)
Patricia Perry ... Mattie (uncredited)
Alfred E. Smith ... Thompson (uncredited)
Edna Snapp ... Wife of Justice of the Peace (uncredited)
Jim Steakley ... Mayor Tom Maynard (uncredited)
Earl Williamson ... Small Role (uncredited)
C.C.L. Wray ... Justice of the Peace (uncredited)

Directed by
Elia Kazan 
Writing credits
Paul Osborn (screenplay)

William Bradford Huie (based on novels by) and
Borden Deal (based on novels by)

Produced by
Elia Kazan .... producer
Original Music by
Kenyon Hopkins (music composed by)
Cinematography by
Ellsworth Fredericks (director of photography) (as Ellsworth Fredricks)
Film Editing by
William Reynolds (film editor)
Art Direction by
Herman A. Blumenthal 
Lyle R. Wheeler 
Set Decoration by
Joseph Kish (set decorations)
Walter M. Scott (set decorations)
Costume Design by
Anna Hill Johnstone (costumes designed by)
Makeup Department
Ben Nye .... makeup
Helen Turpin .... hair stylist
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Charles H. Maguire .... assistant director (as Charles Maguire)
Art Department
Don B. Greenwood .... property master (uncredited)
Sound Department
Eugene Grossman .... sound
Dick Vorisek .... sound (as Richard Vorisek)
Camera and Electrical Department
Clyde Taylor .... gaffer (uncredited)
Haskell Wexler .... additional photographer (uncredited)
Editorial Department
Leonard Doss .... color consultant
Music Department
Kenyon Hopkins .... conductor
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
110 min | Argentina:112 min
Black And White (archive footage) | Color
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Westrex Recording System) | 4-Track Stereo
Argentina:13 | Finland:K-12 | Sweden:15 | UK:A (original rating) | UK:PG (video rating) (2004) | USA:Approved (certificate #19552) | West Germany:12
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Film debut of Bruce Dern.See more »
Anachronisms: When Chuck drives the black workers to their new TVA-built homes, a white car can be seen parked in the distance which appears to be a 1949 or 1950 Ford, but which in any case is plainly not a vehicle that would have existed in 1933, when the film is set.See more »
Carol Garth Baldwin:[to Chuck] I'm leaving here, with you or without you, but I want you to know something... I'd be a good wife for you. A DAMN good wife. I'm smarter than you in some ways and I know what's good about you and I know what's bad and I'm not afraid to tell you... I have two children who love you. They love you and I love you... and you're not easy to love, but you do need someone... and I love you. I love you, I love you.See more »
Movie Connections:
He Walks with MeSee more »


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13 out of 17 people found the following review useful.
The traditionalist. . . the modernist. . . and a river between them., 24 January 2005
Author: stephen-357 from United States

On May 18, 1933 the Federal Government under FDR's "progressive agenda", created the Tennessee Valley Authority, a vast scheme of regional development that involved, in part, the diverting of masses of water into valleys thus protecting large populations of people from the ravages of flooding rivers. Dams were created to assist in this enterprise and to harness the vast energy of the raging waters through turbines which in turn created electricity for communities that still lived in the "dark ages." WILD RIVER begins with stock news footage of the damage ravaged upon a community by a flood, in particular a heart rending first hand account of a man who has suffered a great loss. In comes the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) to save the day, a bastion of progress with Chuck Glover (Montgomery Clift) as its representative. The TVA, in order to complete its mission, must relocate all the residents within a particular area slated for water relocation but Mrs Ella Garth, an old hard-as-nails woman living on a small island in the middle of the valley, refuses to leave her land for any price. This is the context of WILD RIVER, but for director Elia Kazan, the TVA and its surrounding controversy are a microcosm for America's growing pains and the divisions between North and South that have persisted since the Civil War brought them to a head. Kazan contrasts rugged individualism, so much a part of the Nation's heritage, with an activist Federal Government citing the best interests of the community. The traditional attachment that the South has to "the land", where "the elements" are an accepted part of life is contrasted with the North's reliance on technology to tame the elements. The sophisticated Montgomery, full of enthusiasm and conviction for his mission, is immediately jolted into reality first by the steadfast conviction of the old landowner (in a towering display of acting by Jo Van Fleet), then by overt Racism "for a minute I forgot where I was.", and finally by his own mixed emotions. His passions are aroused by Carol (Lee Remick), Mrs Garth's stepdaughter, who is suffering from under stimulation, both physically and mentally. Widowed for over two years, she lives with her two children and the old woman on the island. When the handsome, educated Chuck arrives on the scene, she finds in him a source of combustion to feed a very deep well of passion. Once ignited, the fire threatens to envelope Chuck's controlled existence and intensify Carol's feelings of displacement. Rarely has confusion, vulnerability and molten sexuality been rendered more effective by an actress. Remick completely dispenses with any pretense about her sexual and emotional hunger and sets the screen on fire! While still smoldering, she manages to convey her separate, but equally passionate emotions for man and child during a tender scene between Clift and her daughter.

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