336 user 61 critic

Legends of the Fall (1994)

In the early 1900s, three brothers and their father living in the remote wilderness of Montana are affected by betrayal, history, love, nature, and war.



(screenplay), (screenplay) (as Bill Wittliff) | 1 more credit »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Paul Desmond ...
James O'Banion (as John Novack)
Sam Sarkar ...


In early 20th-century Montana, Col. William Ludlow lives in the wilderness with his sons, Tristan, Alfred and Samuel. Eventually, the unconventional but close-knit family encounters tragedy when Samuel is killed in World War I. Tristan and Alfred survive their tours of duty, but, soon after they return home, both men fall for Samuel's gorgeous fiancée, Susannah, and their intense rivalry begins to destroy the family. Written by Jwelch5742

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The men of the Ludlow family. A woman's grace brought them together. Then her passion tore them apart. See more »


Drama | Romance | War | Western

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, and for some sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

13 January 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Leyendas de pasión  »

Box Office


$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$14,038,128 (USA) (16 January 1995)


$66,638,883 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(8 channels)|



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


It took Edward Zwick seventeen years to get this project up on screen. See more »


After Samuel tells his father that he's going to fight in the war, there is a shot of him where Alfred's shoulder is barely visible behind him. When he runs to the stairs to talk to Susannah there is a closeup of him. Even though he has moved about five feet he is still in the same position as earlier in the closeup, and Alfred's shoulder is still visible. See more »


Samuel: Tristan! Get back to your unit!
Tristan: Those boys are boring. I'd rather have you watching my back.
See more »


Spoofed in Daria: Legends of the Mall (2000) See more »


The Letters
Written by James Horner
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User Reviews

One of the worst movies of the decade!
4 May 1999 | by (Boston, Mass, US) – See all my reviews

I couldn't know where to start!

I found just about every aspect of the movie poor and deplorable (except for a superb cinematography, to be fair). The acting is quite pathetic and embarrassing at times. The whole movie seems to gravitate towards beautiful poses of Brad Pitt with the sunshine through his hair and the wonderful Montana woods in the background, like in a bad shampoo commercial.

The character played by Julia Ormond is simply unbelievable! She is supposed to be in the 1910s, yet she behaves like a very promiscuous 90s woman. If the movie had any grasp on historical realism, this woman should have been ostracized from society, end up as an outcast. Instead, she jumps from bed to bed in her fiancee's house like there's no tomorrow, and nobody seems to be bothered about it!

The screenwriters add some characters to the story for the sole purpose to be killed and make our "heroes" look sad and puppy-eyed. Literally! Otherwise someone please explain to me the character of Isabel in the movie. She doesn't even have two decent lines in the script!

The worst element of the movie was the incredible amount of historical mistakes or anachronisms. There were too many to let you concentrate in this excuse for a plot. I'm a great enthusiast of movies that try to reflect an era, and pay lots of attention to every detail. The erroneous details were so numerous that I would burst in laughter at times. And this movie was made by the director of a movie like "Glory"! From the way they talk, to their apparel, to the tools they use, to every other detail, the movie as bad as "Titanic" as far as historical accuracy is concerned.

To illustrate with an example, at a point in the movie Susannah -Julia Ormond- pulls a portable photo reflex-camera on a tripod and takes idyllic pictures of the brothers in the Montana landscape... They are supposed to be in the 1910s-1920s! Cameras were as big as a TV set! And portable reflex cameras were not available as consumer products until the 1950s! Anyone that knows a bit about photography probably caught that major goof!

The movie is so plagued with goofs that makes it difficult for a serious movie-goer to concentrate on the story. I guess they really made the movie with one thing in mind: milking the cash out of those teenage fans of Brad! There's no other explanation for this awful flick.

Please avoid this movie at all costs if you don't like 3 hour- long shampoo commercials with very, very bad plots. You have been warned... unless of course you are a hardcore fan of Brad.

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