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Something Big (1971)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Western | November 1971 (USA)
Joe Baker has a dream. He wants to do 'something big.' When he needs a Gatling gun to accomplish this, he seeks out a black marketeer. The price he wants for the gun? A woman! So Baker ... See full summary »




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Cast overview, first billed only:
Joe Baker
Col. Morgan
Dover McBride
Mary Anna Morgan
Jesse Bookbinder
Jonny Cobb
Tommy McBride
Polly Standall
Junior Frisbee
Sgt. Fitzsimmons
Angel Moon
Joe Pickins
Judi Meredith ...
Carrie Standall
Edward Faulkner ...
Capt. Tyler (as Ed Faulkner)
Chief Yellow Sun


Joe Baker has a dream. He wants to do 'something big.' When he needs a Gatling gun to accomplish this, he seeks out a black marketeer. The price he wants for the gun? A woman! So Baker kidnaps a woman off of the stagecoach, only to find that she is the wife of the commandant of the local Cavalry detachment. Things get further complicated when a girl named Dover McBride shows up. She has come to force Baker to marry her and return east, as he promised to do four years earlier. Written by Alfred Jingle

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Everybody wants to do something big once in his life. It's just that most people don't have to hold up a stagecoach, steal a girl, and swap her for a gun to do it. See more »


Comedy | Western

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some suggestive content and western violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

November 1971 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El Capitano  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


On its original release in the UK, this was commonly shown as the main feature in a double bill, with Darker Than Amber (1970) as the supporting film. See more »


[examining corpse]
Colonel Morgan: Well, I'd say he looks healthier than the last time I saw him.
Junior Frisbee: How can he look healthier when he's dead?
Colonel Morgan: It must agree with him.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Paradoxically--considering its definition--the film's title is presented in all lower case letters, as can be seen in the poster. See more »


Referenced in My Husband, the Producer (1974) See more »


Something Big
Music by Burt Bacharach
Lyrics by Hal David
Performed by Mark Lindsay
See more »

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User Reviews

Old Fashioned Fun Western
9 December 1999 | by (Home) – See all my reviews

Whatever happened to light-hearted western movies like 'Something Big'? Now, whenever Hollywood manages to let a western slip out among the 'Die Hard' ripoffs and teen romances, they are always ponderous, grim, indictments of the murderous whiteman's persecution of indians or sombre stories about tormented gunslingers. By 90's movie standards, nobody in the Wild West seems to have ever cracked a smile. 'Something Big' is a movie from the good old days of politically incorrect westerns. Dean Martin plays a likeable outlaw with plans for something big to finish his career in the west. Plans involving a Gatling gun, a fortune in gold, a kidnapped wife of a cavalry officer, Apaches and Mexican bandidos galore. The movie has a cheerful adventurous mood to it, with all kinds of touches of atmosphere like Dean Martin's pet dog Scruffy, the skeleton propped up in the saloon, and the John Ford-like dialogue between Brian Keith as the cavalry officer and Ben Johnson as his scout. 'Something Big' has almost the same mood as a pirate movie, only set in the west. An exciting story with likeable scoundrels after a fabulous treasure. I remember seeing this on TV as a little kid and wishing my life could be like that of Dean Martin's character in this movie. If you love westerns and do not feel like watching a big important 'message' movie like Dances With Wolves or a revisionist gunfighter story like Unforgiven, you should try to find this film on TV. It is a shame that 'Something Big' never made it to video. Western fans need more fun, guilt-free entertainment. I disagree COMPLETELY with Leonard Maltin's review, and I am sure all other real western fans will too.

23 of 27 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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