Jake Roedel and Jack Bull Chiles are friends in Missouri when the Civil War starts. Women and Blacks have few rights. Jack Bull's dad is killed by Union soldiers, so the young men join the Bushwhackers, irregulars loyal to the South. One is a Black man, Daniel Holt, beholden to the man who bought his freedom. They skirmish then spend long hours hiding. Sue Lee, a young widow, brings them food. She and Jack Bull become lovers, and when he's grievously wounded, Jake escorts her south to a safe farm. The Bushwhackers, led by men set on revenge, make a raid into Kansas. At nineteen, Jake is ill at ease with war. As his friends die one after another, he must decide where honor lies.Written by
The scene in Lawrence during which Jake points a revolver at Pitt Mackeson when Pitt tries to take a father and son out of a home appears in the movie almost exactly as it is seen in the novel. However, the final scene with Pitt Mackeson, during which Jake points rifle at Pitt after chatting with him, is quite different. In the novel, Jake chats not with Pitt but with one of Pitt's associates, and after their talk, when Jake realizes Pitt is coming up the road on horseback, Jake goes to the road and shoots at Pitt, who hides in the trees. As in the film, however, the novel ends without either Jake or Pitt killing each other. In the end, they both go their separate ways. See more »
When Jake is preparing to go to bed after his marriage and is talking with Daniel Holt he removes his left boot three times. See more »
On the western frontier of Missouri, the American Civil War was fought not by armies, but by neighbors. Informal gangs of local southern Bushwhackers fought a bloody and desperate guerrilla war against the occupying Union Army and pro-Union Jayhawkers.
Allegiance to either side was dangerous. But it was more dangerous still to find oneself caught in the middle.
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Excellent movie (one of the best) and very accurate
This movie is one of the sleepers of all time. I gave it a 10 rating. The story is of the famed 'Bushwhackers' out of Missouri that fought on the side of the South during the War Between the States. The clothing they wore were authentic, the history and why they fought is very accurate and well researched. There was actually one of the battles that did not take place as they depicted... but not bad for Hollywood. The actors were well cast and were either the most brilliant of actors or the director really know how to get the best from them. I suspect it was a combination of great directing, super casting to find the right people and excellent performing by the actors. Not just one or two... this movie really jelled! It has action, romance, suspense, good guys and bad guys (sometimes depending on your individual perspective) and history all rolled into one movie. Even has the future Spiderman and Jewel. And she's good!
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