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The Molly Maguires (1970)

M | | Drama, History | 24 May 1970 (UK)
In the Pennsylvanian coal mines of 1876, a group of Irish immigrant workers begin to retaliate against the cruelty of their work environment.

Director:

Martin Ritt

Writers:

Arthur H. Lewis (suggested by a book by), Walter Bernstein
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Sean Connery ... Jack Kehoe
Richard Harris ... Detective James McParlan
Samantha Eggar ... Miss Mary Raines
Frank Finlay ... Davies
Anthony Zerbe ... Dougherty
Bethel Leslie ... Mrs. Kehoe
Art Lund ... Frazier
Philip Bourneuf ... Father O'Connor
Anthony Costello ... Frank McAndrew
Brendan Dillon ... Mr. Raines
Frances Heflin Frances Heflin ... Mrs. Frazier
John Alderson John Alderson ... Jenkins
Malachy McCourt ... Bartender
Susan Goodman Susan Goodman ... Mrs. McAndrew
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Storyline

Life is rough in the coal mines of 1876 Pennsylvania. A secret group of Irish immigrant miners, known as the Molly Maguires, fights against the cruelty of the mining company with sabotage and murder. A detective, also an Irish emigrant, is hired to infiltrate the group and report on its members. But on which side do his sympathies lie? Written by John Oswalt <jao@jao.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Molly Maguires were a hard, savage gang of rebels. And the informer had to be tougher than them all.

Genres:

Drama | History

Certificate:

M | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 May 1970 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Molly Maguires See more »

Filming Locations:

Llewellyn, Pennsylvania, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$11,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$2,200,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Tamm Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Sir Sean Connery plays a real-life character named Jack Kehoe. Years later, Connery appeared with actor Jack Kehoe in The Untouchables (1987). See more »

Goofs

When Detective McParlan (James McKenna) and Mary Raines are walking down the Philadelphia street, a large hill can be seen in the background. There are no hills in the vicinity, or visible from, downtown Philadephia. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Detective James McParlan: Lager
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Directors: The Films of Martin Scorsese (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Cockles and Mussels
Traditional Irish Song
See more »

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User Reviews

Interesting historical drama.
23 June 2003 | by barnabyrudgeSee all my reviews

During his James Bond days, Sean Connery very rarely took second billing to anyone. However, in this film (made in bewteen You Only Live Twice and Diamonds Are Forever), Connery is the main supporting character to Richard Harris. With two such high calibre actors in the main roles, and Samantha Eggar and Frank Finlay offering significant support, it is no great surprise that The Molly Maguires is a uniformly well acted film.

It takes place in the 1870s in Pennsylvania. An undercover detective (Harris) joins the miners in order to unmask a secret society which goes by the name of "The Molly Maguires". The Maguires have been causing all kinds of sabotage and damage at a variety of Pennsylvanian mines (they're disgruntled after being unsuccessful in a recent strike). Harris is determined to track down their leaders and put an end to the crimes, but he slowly begins to be seduced by their cause and their charismatic leader Kehoe (Sean Connery).

It's a slow moving film, but deliberately so. Director Martin Ritt has expensively and painstakingly recreated the real-life conditions of a 19th mine and the grimy town on the surface above, and he wants you to notice the detail. Every camera shot pans slowly and precisely around the place, ensuring that you don't miss a single penny of the loving detail. However, though the audience gets a real impression of the time and effort that has gone into this film, it doesn't make for an entertaining experience. The slow pace becomes a distraction, especially if you're planning on giving the film a second or third viewing.

The Molly Maguires is worth catching if you're a fan of Connery or Harris (they give exemplary performances). It is also worth catching if this place and time (1870s Pennsylvania) is of historical interst to you. It is not worth catching if you're wanting a grand, involving and highly entertaining film.


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