A mountain man who wishes to live the life of a hermit becomes the unwilling object of a long vendetta by Indians, and proves to be a match for their warriors in one-on-one combat on the early frontier.
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During the mid-nineteenth century, Jeremiah Johnson, after a stint in the US Army, decides that he would prefer a life of solitude and more importantly peace by living with nature in the mountains of the frontier of the American west. This plan entails finding a piece of land upon which to build a house. This quest ends up being not quite what he envisioned as he does require the assistance of others to find his footing, and in turn he amasses friends and acquaintances along the way, some who become more a part of his life than he would have imagined. Perhaps most importantly, some of those people provide him with the knowledge of how to co-exist with some of the many Indian tribes, most importantly the Crow, on whose land in Colorado Jeremiah ultimately decides to build his home. But an act by Jeremiah upon a request by the US Cavalry leads to a chain of events that may forever change the peaceful relationship he worked so hard to achieve with his neighbors and their land. Written by
A short ten minute promotional featurette was made for this film and distributed in theaters. It is called The Saga of Jeremiah Johnson (1972) and is included on the film's DVD. See more »
In the last close-up shot of Hatchet Jack you can see his chest moving up and down after he's supposedly dead. See more »
His name was Jeremiah Johnson, and they say he wanted to be a mountain man. The story goes that he was a man of proper wit and adventurous spirit, suited to the mountains. Nobody knows whereabouts he come from and don't seem to matter much. He was a young man and ghosty stories about the tall hills didn't scare him none. He was looking for a Hawken gun, .50 caliber or better. He settled for a .30, but damn, it was a genuine Hawken, and you couldn't go no better. Bought him a good ...
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" You've done well to Keep your hair, when so many's after it "
There are many films which personify the era of the Mountain Man. This is perhaps one of the best. The reason why it is at the top of the list, is due in part to director Sydney Pollack's selection of natural wonders, majestic scenery and simplistic storyline. The movie tells the story of Jeremiah Johnson (Robert Redford) a veteran of the Mexican American war who decides to journey into the High Alpine Rockies to become a Mountain Man. Based very loosely on the novel by Vardis Fisher, the hero seeks the life of a trapper which offers Solace, wild adventure, aboriginal encounters and a chance for legendary exploits. During the first years of his experience, Johnson is befriended and threatened by both Native Americans and crazed mountain veterans who teach him and endanger him as well. Among the best is 'Bear Claw, Chris Lapp' (Will Geer), 'Paints His Shirt Red' (Joaquin Martinez) and Del Gue (Stefan Gierasch). (Delle Bolton) plays Swan and Josh Albee) is Caleb who become part of an instant family. The film is quite picturesque in its beautiful seasonal settings and entertaining to anyone seeking a chapter in the bygone era of a vanished breed. ****
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