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Beyond the Prairie: The True Story of Laura Ingalls Wilder (1999)

A version of the "Little House" stories that cover some of the events that take place in the last three books of the series and the book "The First Four Years" Laura is living on the ... See full summary »

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Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Rob Halverson ...
Russian Balalaika Player
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Terra Allen ...
Alandra Bingham ...
J. Scott Bronson ...
Mr. Robbins
Courtnie Bull ...
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Cory
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Jan Hanks ...
Mrs. Robbins (as Jan Jensen)
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Cap Garland
Haley McCormick ...
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Patsy Robbins
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Mrs. Bouchie
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A version of the "Little House" stories that cover some of the events that take place in the last three books of the series and the book "The First Four Years" Laura is living on the prairie nere De Smet, South Dakota and eventually meets the man that she will marry, Almanzo Wilder. Life, however, is not easy on the prairie and after a crop lost to hail, the loss of their baby son, the burning down of their house, and a terrible bout of diptheria, the Wilders must make some hard choices about how to move on from the tragedies. Written by Anonymous

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2 January 2000 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La véritable histoire de Laura Ingalls  »

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1.33 : 1
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The Truth about the True Story of Laura Ingalls Wilder
28 January 2000 | by (Kentucky) – See all my reviews

Saying this movie is more true than the TV series is like saying a tiger is a better pet than a lion. Neither of them make good pets, regardless.

I enjoyed the fact that some of the details were not overlooked. Pa (well played by Richard Thomas) had a beard and played the violin. However, I was disappointed in the script overall.

One of my favorite parts of the Little House series is the confrontation between Laura and her future sister-in-law, Eliza Jane Wilder. I also disliked the way Laura was forced into teaching by her father. This is how Laura told the story in any of her books. Another irritating point, Almanzo Wilder had a matched pair of Morgans. Skip and Barnum came later. Laura did not nearly break her engagement because she wanted to travel.

Like many movies these days, The Powers That Be were determined to re-write history and place feminists in roles. I recall nothing in the book that has Caroline Ingalls going off on Charles about wanting to move further west. I recall nothing about Laura Ingalls wanting to consumate her marriage in an abandoned homesite out in the open. This film couldn't even keep Laura in a sun bonnet, placing her instead in a beat up man's hat that looked like something Indiana Jones threw out.

I wouldn't have this big of a problem with the movie if it did not claim to be the "true" story. I had no problem with the flights of fancy the TV show took because it only claimed to be based on the life and works of Laura Ingalls. But if you claim it is the "true" story, then make it the true story. Or don't do it.


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