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Paint Your Wagon (1969)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama, Musical | 15 October 1969 (USA)
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Two unlikely prospector partners share the same wife in a California gold rush mining town.

Director:

Joshua Logan

Writers:

Alan Jay Lerner (book), Alan Jay Lerner (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Lee Marvin ... Ben Rumson
Clint Eastwood ... Pardner
Jean Seberg ... Elizabeth
Harve Presnell ... Rotten Luck Willie
Ray Walston ... Mad Jack Duncan
Tom Ligon ... Horton Fenty
Alan Dexter ... Parson
William O'Connell ... Horace Tabor
Benny Baker ... Haywood Holbrook (as Ben Baker)
Alan Baxter ... Mr. Fenty
Paula Trueman ... Mrs. Fenty
Robert Easton ... Atwell
Geoffrey Norman Geoffrey Norman ... Foster
H.B. Haggerty ... Steve Bull
Terry Jenkins Terry Jenkins ... Joe Mooney
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Storyline

A Michigan farmer and a prospector form a partnership in the California gold country. Their adventures include buying and sharing a wife, hijacking a stage, kidnaping six prostitutes, and turning their mining camp into a boomtown. Along the way there is plenty of drinking, gambling, and singing. They even find time to do some creative gold mining. Written by David J. Kiseleski <davidk269@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Lee Marvin Sings! See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for thematic material | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 October 1969 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La leyenda de la ciudad sin nombre See more »

Filming Locations:

Baker, Oregon, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$31,678,778
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (35 mm prints)| 70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In 1964 Eddie Fisher bought the rights from Louis B. Mayer. He planned for it to be a Cinerama production to commence that November. See more »

Goofs

When the town falls apart due to the tunnels collapsing, the smooth sides of the concrete tunnel are visible after the thin layer of mud falls down into them. See more »

Quotes

Elizabeth: Did you know that the Fenty's had an apple farm back in Pennsylvania?
Ben Rumson: Apple jack, huh?
Mr. Fenty: No, sir, we did not make apple jack!
Ben Rumson: Then, what did you grow the apples for?
Mr. Fenty: Mr. Rumson, do you think that everything that comes out of the earth should be used to make liquor?
Ben Rumson: Whenever possible, yes.
See more »

Alternate Versions

On its release to what were then called "neighborhood theatres" (i.e. theatres which showed films that had ended their first runs downtown), the film's running time was shortened by having three songs eliminated, "I Still See Elisa", "The First Thing You Know", and "Gold Fever". This left both Lee Marvin and Clint Eastwood with only one solo song each. The film was restored to its original length for its first television showing, and has remained that way ever since. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Cave Dwellers (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

The Gospel Of No Name City
Lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner
Music by André Previn
Sung by Alan Dexter
See more »

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User Reviews

the cap on the timecapsule
17 August 2004 | by shipes_jSee all my reviews

paint your wagon is, in a lot of ways, the end of an era that I cherished the most (my teen years) the musicals were always there as a kid even though I didn't really like them in the fifties (except 7 brides) ....but there is something about the orchestration of those musical movies that sounded so similar....and true to its genre, paint your wagon's soundtrack had a timecapsuled, nostalgic feel reminiscent of those bygone days when musicals ruled.....the negative rap on this film is probably due to the timing of its release...the Vietnam war was hot and perhaps people couldn't accept its bawdy comedy and musical theme....even though it should have been a perfect escape type film...it is considered a major flop....like some others that took on an afterlife that superseded its theatrical run...word of mouth finds favor with the film in almost all venues....except some of the reviews I've read recently.

I love the depth of the dialogue and the nitty gritty reality of the mindsets of those prospectors who took from life what they needed and created their own utopian world (or tried to)...and ironically were sad (inside)even though there was uproarious drinking and carousing...which characterizes man self destructive nature when left to himself to do as he pleases...not unlike ancient rome.

lee marvin played the lead role so well...it was almost as if it had been written for him...even surpassing his clever coolness of a similar character "a #1" (emperor of the north...a film about the great depression hobos)

in paint your wagon so much of man's delemia is characterized in dialogue about growing up, doing what feels good, and paying the price for such behavior later.....the grim reminder of man's struggle with his own self can best be shown in the scene with ben rumson as he takes an assessment of his life in a few brief words to holmbrook (the mediator)...."there are two kinds of people....them going somewhere and them going nowhere....I'm an exodus to nowhere....sometimes I get mighty homesick"....then you hear the profound lyrics to the song "born under a wander star" where even the most blessed place one can get will never be satisfying enough to make these kinds of folk want to stay.

another heady piece is the scene with clint singing "gold fever" and how greed will turn people into a total different character from what they were before the fever hit....

this movie has a lot of heavy thoughts and depth even though it is a great comedy film...it's the reason it is my favorite movie of all times....really cool characters....outrageous comedy....mind provoking dialogue...and a nostalgic soundtrack that will take you back to the fifties....

as for the bad rap on lee marvins singing...just how great would those songs have come off if he had had an operatic baritone with perfect pitch?...in a word...fake.


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