A few short hours after President Lincoln has been assassinated, Dr. Samuel Mudd gives medical treatment to a wounded man who shows up at his door. Mudd has no idea that the president is dead and that he is treating his murderer, John Wilkes Booth. But that doesn't save him when the army posse searching for Booth finds evidence that Booth has been to the doctor's house. Dr. Mudd is arrested for complicity and sentenced to life imprisonment, to be served in the infamous pestilence-ridden Dry Tortugas.Written by
A 60-minute adaptation of this film was broadcast on the CBS Radio Network program "Lux Radio Theater" on May 2, 1938, with Gary Cooper playing Dr. Mudd. See more »
Booth is seen entering the President's theater box on the President's left; he even opens the door first to make sure the President is there. He then shoots him at a distance of at least 5 feet, again from Lincoln's left side. In reality, Booth entered the box from behind the President, and shot him at very close range in the back of the head. Also, in real life Booth shot Lincoln immediately after the line "...you sockdolagizing old mantrap!", thus insuring that the audience laughter would drown out the sound of the shot (Booth was very familiar with the play and knew just when to shoot). In the film, the line in question is uttered before Booth has even made his way into the box. See more »
Since this film has never been released to the video market in the USA, the only version available for home entertainment is an Argentinean VHS edition that was lifted from a 16mm print. Although the film plays in English with Spanish language subtitles, the credits and all signs and letters shown in the picture were redone in Spanish. The name of this version is "Prisionero del destino". See more »
Written by Daniel Decatur Emmett
Played over the opening credits
Reprised by the Union Army band at Lincoln's request
Played as background music often. See more »
stands up very well
I caught this one on American Movie Classics as part of its John Ford retrospective and found it to be an extremely well-done film that stand up very well for its 60-plus years. Lots of tension, and the action is extremely well-paced. Good acting all-around, especially from Claude Gillingwater as Mudd's feisty father-in-law.
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