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Two part TV adaptation of Louis L'Amour's third novel in the Sackett series. The story follows the three Sackett brothers out west from their Tennessee home. Along the way the oldest, Tell, prospects for gold, while the two younger Orin and Tye herd cattle and later help bring order to a racially divided Santa Fe. Written by
Mark Shelton <email@example.com>
This COULD have been a very good film. Nice, strong themes running thru it, but none are really developed. Great cast, but it suffers from very weak direction and gaffs that are simply too serious to ignore.
Let's list just a few of the glaring mistakes in the film.
1) When the two younger Sacketts are traveling from Texas toward Santa Fe in the first part of the two part series, they are shown amid lots of saguaro cactus. Problem with this is that the saguaro cactus ONLY grows in the Sonoran desert, which is in Arizona, extreme southeast California and the northwest part of Mexico right below Arizona. No such cactus grown in Texas or in NE New Mexico where they were supposed to have been at the time. ANYONE spending any time in Arizona would know this, and anyone in New Mexico or Texas would know that cactus is not there.
2) The film was set in 1869 and the year or two before, but the rifles most of the men used in the film were Winchester repeating rifles that were not produced until 1870 and later. But that was a small error compared to the fact that the rifle only holds (I believe) 7 cartridges, though the movie had some of the characters firing about 15 rounds before needing to reload.
3) The climactic gunfight at the end of the movie is supposed to be set at "daybreak," though the shadows are all over the place, some of them clearly when the sun is on the horizon and then seconds later when the sun is nearly straight overhead and then back to on the horizon and then back to straight overhead.
4) That same climactic gunfight has the three Sackett brothers and a wounded friend facing off against the three Bigelow brothers and four hired gunmen... but the Sacketts kill eight of them. Only seven bad guys there, but the Sacketts kill eight.
Now, none of those errors are so serious as to destroy the film if the movie had otherwise been well-made and story lines developed and themes worked within it... but they were not. A terrible waste of some excellent acting talent.
11 of 29 people found this review helpful.
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