Jeremiah Johnson is a starkly simple story well told. It is the journey of a man who seeks to re-make himself. Johnson becomes disillusioned, like Thoreau and even Ulysses S. Grant, by the Mexican War and deserts to become a mountain man. There he finds the Rockies starkly beautiful and completely without mercy for him or anyone else. Will Geer plays the older trapper who teaches the 'Pilgrim,' a very solid performance by Redford, how to survive. The film's treatments of Whites and Native Americans is profoundly even handed, and Milious's fingerprints are noteworthy in the robust and calculated course of the narrative.
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