7.3/10
5,262
73 user 52 critic

Emperor of the North (1973)

Emperor of the North Pole (original title)
In 1933, during the Depression, Shack the brutal conductor of the number 19 train has a personal vendetta against the best train hopping hobo tramp in the Northwest, A No. 1.

Director:

Robert Aldrich
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Lee Marvin ... A No. 1
Ernest Borgnine ... Shack
Keith Carradine ... Cigaret
Charles Tyner ... Cracker
Malcolm Atterbury ... Hogger
Simon Oakland ... Policeman
Harry Caesar ... Coaly
Hal Baylor ... Yardman's Helper
Matt Clark ... Yardlet
Elisha Cook Jr. ... Gray Cat (as Elisha Cook)
Joe Di Reda Joe Di Reda ... Dinger (as Joe di Reda)
Liam Dunn ... Smile
Diane Dye Diane Dye ... Girl in Water
Robert Foulk ... Conductor
Jim Goodwin Jim Goodwin ... Fakir (as James Goodwin)
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Storyline

It is during the great depression in the US, and the land is full of people who are now homeless. Those people, commonly called "hobos", are truly hated by Shack (Borgnine), a sadistical railway conductor who swore that no hobo will ride his train for free. Well, no-one but "A" Number One (Lee Marvin), who is ready to put his life at stake to become a local legend - as the first person who survived the trip on Shack's notorious train. Written by Brian Peterson calyooper@email.com

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Lee Marvin & Ernest Borgnine meet in the fight of the century. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 May 1973 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Emperor of the North See more »

Filming Locations:

Buxton, Oregon, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,705,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (FMC Library Print)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Willis Kyle, President of the Oregon, Pacific and Eastern Railway, allowed the film company to have unlimited access to his company's rolling stock for the film. See more »

Goofs

When A#1 is attempting to stall Shack's train as it is trying to beat the mail train to the junction, his shoulder is badly injured by Shack's chain and scalding steam from the engine, after which he puts grease on his severe burn. When we see him without sleeves after Cigaret steals the clothes from the church group, his arms are burn-free. See more »

Quotes

Hobo: Guess who, Shack? It's the big bad 'bo, Shack. And he's gonna bite your big bad ass!
See more »

Alternate Versions

Originally premiered as "Emperor of the North Pole": the film was pulled from release because people thought the film was about the Arctic. It was re-released as "Emperor of the North" and given two different advertising campaigns: one with a poster playing up the comedy, another with a poster playing up the violence (The poster said "If you can ride Shack's train and live, you're...Emperor of the North!"). Neither new campaign clicked with audiences. The song "A Man and a Train" is sung in "Emperor of the North" by Marty Robbins. The poster for the original release says it is sung by Bill Medley. It is unknown what other changes, if any, were made between the two releases. See more »


Soundtracks

A Man and a Train
Lyrics by Hal David
Music by Frank De Vol
Sung by Marty Robbins
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Sadistic yard bull takes on the King of the Road
20 February 2002 | by helpless_dancerSee all my reviews

Ernest Borgnine was superb as the murderous railroad agent intent on keeping a legendary hobo off his train. Lee Marvin gave one of his best performances as A#1, the hobo's hobo, who is equally set on riding the rails on Borgnine's unrideable #19. Keith Carradine almost stole the show as a useless, me first punk out to prove his manhood in the harsh hobo camps. Very realistic looking sets and the entire film captured the flavor of the depression era perfectly. 4 stars.


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