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North West Mounted Police (1940)

In 1885, a Texas Ranger travels to Canada to arrest a trapper who's wanted for murder and who's stirring up the Natives in a rebellion against the Canadian government.

Director:

Cecil B. DeMille

Writers:

Alan Le May (original screen play) (as Alan Lemay), Jesse Lasky Jr. (original screen play) | 1 more credit »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Directors: King Vidor, Jack Conway, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Spencer Tracy, Robert Young, Walter Brennan
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Gary Cooper ... Dusty Rivers
Madeleine Carroll ... April Logan
Paulette Goddard ... Louvette Corbeau
Preston Foster ... Sergeant Jim Brett
Robert Preston ... Ronnie Logan
George Bancroft ... Jacques Corbeau
Lynne Overman ... Tod McDuff
Akim Tamiroff ... Dan Duroc
Walter Hampden ... Big Bear
Lon Chaney Jr. ... Shorty
Montagu Love ... Inspector Cabot
Francis McDonald ... Louis Riel
George E. Stone ... Johnny Pelang
Willard Robertson ... Supt. Harrington
Regis Toomey ... Constable Jerry Moore
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Storyline

Texas Ranger Dusty Rivers ("Isn't that a contradiction in terms?", another character asks him) travels to Canada in the 1880s in search of Jacques Corbeau, who is wanted for murder. He wanders into the midst of the Riel Rebellion, in which Métis (people of French and Native heritage) and Natives want a separate nation. Dusty falls for nurse April Logan, who is also loved by Mountie Jim Brett. April's brother is involved with Courbeau's daughter Louvette, which leads to trouble during the battles between the rebels and the Mounties. Through it all Dusty is determined to bring Corbeau back to Texas (and April, too, if he can manage it.) Written by Ron Kerrigan <mvg@whidbey.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The roaring magnificence of "Union Pacific" . . . the pulse-pounding action of "The Plainsman" . . . two surging love stories woven into an unforgettable drama of human emotions . . . told against the blazing beauty of the northern forests . . . filmed in SUPER TECHNICOLOR !


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 October 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Scarlet Riders See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Cecil B. DeMille narrated portions of the story, a practice he followed in all of his Technicolor films. See more »

Goofs

The NWMP did not wear bearskin hats as seen in the movie. They wore either a red-and-black pillbox type cap, or a large white hat in the style of a London Bobbie. See more »

Quotes

Ronnie Logan: Listen you little wildcat, you're the only real thing that's ever happened to me. And nobody, nothing could ever make me let you go.
Louvette Corbeau: I love you so terrible bad I feel good.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The UK DVD is cut by 6 secs with edits to cruel horsefalls. See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Northwest Hounded Police (1946) See more »

Soundtracks

DOES THE MOON SHINE THROUGH THE LONESOME PINE?
(uncredited)
Written by Frank Loesser, Victor Young
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Canadian History DeMille Style
12 March 2006 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

When Cecil B. DeMille started filming Northwest Mounted Police, Joel McCrea was Texas Ranger Dusty Rivers (a cowboy name if there ever was one), but after a few scenes McCrea dropped out and Gary Cooper got to do his second of four DeMille features.

It was both DeMille and Cooper's first film in technicolor and when DeMille went in for technicolor we mean bright hues of every part of the rainbow. But back then color itself was a novelty so people liked seeing it. Northwest Mounted Police also won an Oscar for best editing. Taking home the prize was Anne Bauchens who edited every single DeMille film from back into the middle silent era. DeMille had it written into his contract at Paramount that he would not do a film unless Ms. Bauchens was available to be editor. He had many of the same folks on his various films, but only Ms. Bauchens rated that kind of treatment.

Michael Medved has Northwest Mounted Police listed among the fifty worst films of all time. It's not great, but it ain't as bad as all that. The Victorian DeMille type dialog is the main reason, but it is no more present here than in any of his other sound films.

Northwest Mounted Police takes place in the mid 1880s and concerns the famous 2nd Louis Riel Rebellion and the Duck Lake massacre of Royal Canadian Mounted Police in that conflict. Grafted on to that is the story of a Texas Ranger played by Gary Cooper who comes up to Canada with a warrant for one of Riel's confederates who killed a man in his state.

Of course Cooper gets himself mixed up in the politics of the area and also considerably mixed up with Maddeleine Carroll, much to the displeasure of her sweetheart Preston Foster, as stalwart a Mountie as you'll ever find this side of Nelson Eddy. That's a standard DeMille plot device, two men in heat over the heroine.

In some considerable heat himself is Robert Preston who is Carroll's brother also a Mountie. He's got it bad for Paulette Goddard a Meti who's got it real bad for Preston. In fact her little scheme concerning Preston is what drives the action of the film in the second half.

DeMille was never an actor's director or a writer's director. But he knew how to fill the screen and keep the action going. That he does in Northwest Mounted Police.


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