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Across the Wide Missouri

Across the Wide Missouri

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In the 1830's beaver trapper Flint Mitchell and other white men hunt and trap in the then unnamed territories of Montana and Idaho. Flint marries a Blackfoot woman as a way to gain entrance into her people's rich lands, but finds she means more to him than a ticket to good beaver habitat.

STARS: Clark Gable, Ricardo Montalban, John Hodiak

78 min | Adventure, Drama, Romance | 1951 | Color


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A 1951 Western starring Clark Gable. Gable plays the leader of a bunch of fur trappers trying to ply their trade in early 1800's America. His crew is a motley bunch but they are loyal to each other & the band as a whole are a successful unit so when they venture out to uncharted territories (in unnamed states at this point in history) they face opposition from the warlike members of the Blackfoot tribe, led by Ricardo Montalban, who attacks them on sight (killing a brother of one of Gable's men). What potentially may smooth things over is Gable's decision to marry the daughter, played by Maria Elena Marques, of the chief who he intends to present to her grandfather (she was taken from his tribe many years before) as a means to instill good will & safe trading (they build a fort on a spot of land approved by the chief). At first the marriage is one of convenience but soon he genuinely falls in love w/her & soon a child is on the way but the specter of Montalban & his acts are apparent when the murdered man's brother kills the chief giving Montalban license to terrorize the fort (he first steals their horses) & sets up a final confrontation between the trappers & his men. William Wellman (The Ox-Bow Incident) directs a succinct, vivid yarn which holds great spirit & intestinal fortitude (God how tough it must've been to live during those times!) w/Gable giving a great performance & well supported by members of his 'tribe' played by the likes of Alan Napier (the original Alfred from TV's Batman), Adolphe Menjou (The Front Page), Richard Anderson (Oscar Goldman from The Six Million Dollar Man) & James Whitmore while Montalban is all menace in a mostly non-verbal perf.

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