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Brigham Young (1940)

In 1844, after the assassination of Mormon leader Joseph Smith by an angry mob in Illinois, the Mormons choose Brigham Young as their new leader and follow him to a new promised land in Utah.

Director:

Henry Hathaway

Writers:

Louis Bromfield, Lamar Trotti (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tyrone Power ... Jonathan Kent
Linda Darnell ... Zina Webb
Dean Jagger ... Brigham Young
Brian Donlevy ... Angus Duncan
Jane Darwell ... Eliza Kent
John Carradine ... Porter Rockwell
Mary Astor ... Mary Ann Young
Vincent Price ... Joseph Smith
Jean Rogers ... Clara Young
Ann E. Todd ... Mary Kent (as Ann Todd)
Willard Robertson ... Heber Kimball
Moroni Olsen ... Doc Richards
Marc Lawrence ... Prosecutor
Stanley Andrews ... Hyrum Smith
Frank M. Thomas ... Hubert Crum (as Frank Thomas)
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Storyline

The true story of the famous Mormon leader, Brigham Young and his battle to transport his people across the Rocky mountains to settle in Salt Lake City. The plot focuses on two of his people, Jonathan Kent and Zina Webb and the hardships they have to face along the way. Written by Col Needham <col@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Great American Motion Picture !


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 September 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Brigham Young: Frontiersman See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,700,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (FMC Library Print) | (copyright length)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Color:

Black and White (Sepiatone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the August 23rd, 1940 edition of The Post-Register, the second city to premiere this film, after the Salt Lake City premiere, was Idaho Falls. It opened at the Paramount Theatre (now the Colonial Theater) on Thursday, August 29th, 1940. See more »

Goofs

In the movie Joseph Smith is shown unarmed when he is shot and killed. In reality he was armed with a "Pepper" pistol. See more »

Quotes

Brigham Young: Indians can't be any worse than some Christians I know. But just the same, until we find a little more about them, we mean to trust in you, Lord, and keep our powder dry.
See more »

Connections

Edited into The Unauthorized Hagiography of Vincent Price (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Shimalong Joe
(uncredited)
Composer unknown
Played by a band at the party and sung by Fuzzy Knight
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Powerful film, but Ty is just in it for box office
25 September 2005 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

This is a wonderful movie about the struggle of the Mormons and their final settlement in Salt Lake, Utah. The beginning and the ending are especially powerful, and the message is one we all have to be reminded of - God doesn't talk, but he communicates, if we would only listen. As I am writing this in the midst of the horrors going on in New Orleans and the surrounding area due to Katrina, I was especially moved by the Mormons having to leave everything behind and move on after Joseph Smith was assassinated. People came to this country to escape religious persecution, and yet they could not. The struggle of the Mormons to cross the country, the cost in lives, the hardship they suffered was truly awe-inspiring, demonstrating their tremendous strength. As far as the actual beliefs of Mormons, this is not heavily gone into, and polygamy is mentioned but is not a centerpiece of the film at all.

The cast is top-notch, though others who have commented know more about the actual characters and can talk about how true the portrayals were. But as actors, Dean Jagger, Mary Astor, Brian Donlevy, John Carradine, Jane Darwell all do excellently with the script they were given.

Though the film could have easily stood on its own (and certainly does today) Tyrone Power and Linda Darnell were added to the cast to get the crowds into the movie theaters to see a film about the Mormons. Power is magnificently handsome as a young Mormon, and Darnell, as Zina, is not a Mormon but stays on with the family after her father is killed. Power does not have much to do until the end of the film, when he has a big scene, and Darnell (still a teenager at the time of the filming) has even less, though they make a lovely couple. Their fate is left unclear regarding her conversion, and one does wonder about the polygamy in their case. You can't beat either one for eye candy, however.


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