51 user 19 critic

The Culpepper Cattle Co. (1972)

PG | | Western | 9 July 1972 (UK)
2:55 | Trailer
Young farmboy who always wanted to be a cowhand talks a tough trail boss into hiring him on a cattle drive.


Dick Richards


Dick Richards (story), Eric Bercovici (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
2 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Gary Grimes ... Ben Mockridge
Billy Green Bush ... Frank Culpepper (as Billy 'Green' Bush)
Luke Askew ... Luke
Bo Hopkins ... Dixie Brick
Geoffrey Lewis ... Russ
Wayne Sutherlin Wayne Sutherlin ... Missoula
John McLiam ... Thorton Pierce
Matt Clark ... Pete
Raymond Guth Raymond Guth ... Cook
Anthony James ... Nathaniel
Charles Martin Smith ... Tim Slater (as Charlie Martin Smith)
Larry Finley ... Mr. Slater
Bob Morgan ... Old John
Jan Burrell ... Mrs. Mockridge
Hal Needham ... Burgess


Teenager Ben Mockridge feels life in a Wild West farm town has nothing better to offer than horse-cart racing with other hicks, so he naively begs cattle company owner Frank Culpepper to engage him as the youngest cowboy for a long cattle trail to a fort. His mother barely notices. Ben doesn't even seem to get it when he's told to report as 'little Mary' to the old cook, whose words, "Cowboy is something you do only if you have nothing better." gradually become clear. Instead of an exciting heroic macho life, it's endless hard work, dumb chores and embarrassment, even getting literally caught with his pants down, robbed of his horse, and witnessing unpunished crimes... Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The boy from "Summer of 42" becomes a man on the cattle drive of 1866. See more »




PG | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


The pistol Ben (Gary Grimes) shows off to Tim (Charles Martin Smith) at the beginning of the movie and later kills his first man with during the saloon shootout, is a model 1858 Remington Army. See more »


During the final shootout, a cowboy clubs another from horseback using a rifle and the arresting cable to prevent the cowboy from falling under the horse can be seen. See more »


Ben Mockridge: How come they keep calling me 'Little Mary'?
Cook, Culpepper Outfit: That's your name, kid. What's the matter? Don't you like it?
Ben Mockridge: No, I don't. It's a girl's name.
Cook, Culpepper Outfit: Well, that's what they call the cook's helper... Little Mary. Christ, I wish you was a girl.
See more »


References Red River (1948) See more »


Amazing Grace
Lyrics by John Newton
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User Reviews

The most authentic western ever made, a great American history lesson!
12 July 2008 | by raylb50See all my reviews

Surely one of the best westerns of all-time, & has to be THE most authentic western ever made, I cannot think of another to match it. Carefully crafted screenplay, told it how it really was, the characters brilliantly played by everyone involved. But it's authenticity is what makes it so fascinating a film to watch, it literally transports you back in time, a real history lesson. Some great iconic one liners, 'Don't stand behind me, boy!' & 'Why put a name to something you might have to eat!?' Geoffrey Lewis, Billy Green Bush & Gary Grimes were riveting in their portrayals. Lewis's hard-man character, so sinister, you really did think, 'This guy is a psycho!!' Bush played the trail weary boss with such attitude it made you acutely aware the hardships & dangers these men faced for so little reward. Grime's naive young character was played to perfection. A great piece of American history, & I have to say, the violence is not overdone, nor is there too much of it, compared to many other western films. If this film is not stored somewhere in a State Library, well, it should be!

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USA | Mexico


English | Spanish

Release Date:

9 July 1972 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

We Pointed 'Em North See more »

Filming Locations:

Sonoita, Arizona, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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