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Wild Geese Calling (1941)

Approved | | Drama | 15 August 1941 (USA)
In the 1890s lumberjack John leaves Seattle for Alaska to look for gold. After he marries dance hall girl Sally, he finds she used to be in love with his best friend Blackie.

Director:

John Brahm
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Henry Fonda ... John Murdock
Joan Bennett ... Sally Murdock
Warren William ... Blackie Bedford
Ona Munson ... Clarabella
Barton MacLane ... Pirate Kelly
Russell Simpson ... Marshal Len Baker
Iris Adrian ... Mazie
James C. Morton ... Mack
Paul Sutton ... Manager
Mary Field ... Jennie Delaney
Stanley Andrews ... Delaney
Robert Emmett Keane ... Ralph - Headwaiter
Adrian Morris Adrian Morris ... Stout Guide (as Michael Morris)
George Watts George Watts ... Mush Mahoney
Charles Middleton ... Doctor Jed Sloan
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Storyline

In the 1890s lumberjack John leaves Seattle for Alaska to look for gold. After he marries dance hall girl Sally, he finds she used to be in love with his best friend Blackie.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

All the thundering drama, romance of the best-selling novel!

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 August 1941 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Vidas sin rumbo See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

 
The Wanderlust thing
23 August 2015 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Wild Geese Calling is one of those films that Henry Fonda made for 20th Century Fox after he was hammer-locked into signing a studio contract with them in order to get cast in The Grapes Of Wrath. It's not a bad action/adventure film about a man who marries the former girlfriend of his best friend.

Best friend Warren William is the best thing about Wild Geese Calling. He's one charming rogue who loves them and leaves them in every city from San Francisco to Nome in the Pacific Northwest. But these women apparently never think ill of him. Whatever his secret if he could bottle and sell it he'd be richer than Donald Trump.

One of those girls he loved and left is Joan Bennett and it's she that Fonda marries. Both William and Fonda are infected by the wanderlust thing, it's always going to be a better opportunity over the next horizon. The title in fact refers to the flight of the wild geese which seems to inspire them. Ironically those 'wild geese' follow strict flight patterns and are hardly nomads. But the symbolism is there, rather heavy handedly emphasized with shots of wild geese flying interspersed in the story.

Fonda and Bennett follow William to Alaska where Fonda learns two things first about Bennett's former relationship and secondly that Bennett is quite pregnant.

Some of the shots with Fonda going out in the winter storms to get a doctor are nicely done. I think that Darryl Zanuck might have recycled some of the footage from Way Down East. No matter, it's well used.

Second best in the cast is Ona Munson who did a bit of recycling of her own with a different take on her famous Belle Watling character from Gone With The Wind. When they can't get a doctor for Bennett, Munson pinch hits and delivers.

Wild Geese Calling is not a bad film. But Henry Fonda in his memoirs makes it abundantly clear he hated all the studio projects from 20th Century Fox he was assigned to until The Oxbow Incident.


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