6.2/10
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31 user 14 critic

The Way West (1967)

Approved | | Adventure, Drama, Western | 24 May 1967 (USA)
In 1843, a former U.S. Senator leads a wagon train of settlers to Oregon, but his megalomania leads to growing dissatisfaction with his leadership.

Director:

Andrew V. McLaglen

Writers:

Ben Maddow (screenplay), Mitch Lindemann (screenplay) (as Mitchell Lindemann) | 1 more credit »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kirk Douglas ... Senator William J. Tadlock
Robert Mitchum ... Dick Summers
Richard Widmark ... Lije Evans
Lola Albright ... Rebecca 'Becky' Evans
Jack Elam ... Preacher Weatherby
Stubby Kaye ... Sam Fairman
Michael McGreevey ... Brownie Evans
Harry Carey Jr. ... Mr. McBee (as Harry Carey)
Connie Sawyer ... Mrs. McBee
Michael Witney Michael Witney ... Johnnie Mack
William Lundigan ... Michael Moynihan
Elisabeth Fraser ... Mrs. Fairman (as Elizabeth Fraser)
John Mitchum ... Little Henry
Patric Knowles ... Captain Grant
Hal Lynch Hal Lynch ... Big Henry
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Storyline

In the mid nineteenth century, Senator William J. Tadlock leads a group of settlers overland in a quest to start a new settlement in the Western U.S. Tadlock is a highly principled and demanding taskmaster who is as hard on himself as he is on those who have joined his wagon train. He clashes with one of the new settlers, Lije Evans, who doesn't quite appreciate Tadlock's ways. Along the way, the families must face death and heartbreak and a sampling of frontier justice when one of them accidentally kills a young Indian boy. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Cracking Like a Whip From Here to Excitement! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 May 1967 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Harold Hecht's The Way West See more »

Filming Locations:

Tucson, Arizona, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Color by Deluxe)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In 1956, Hecht-Hill-Lancaster Productions announced plans to film this movie. It was to be adapted by Clifford Odets and was to star Burt Lancaster, James Stewart, and hopefully, Gary Cooper. See more »

Goofs

During the river crossing several men in long "duster" coats appear on one side of the river and in the next shot, seconds later, are on the other side. They switch back and forth several times, See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[Mercy flirts silently with Brownie]
Lije Evans: Best not be lookin', Brownie.
Brownie Evans: I ain't lookin'... as hard as I can.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Introducing Sally Field as "Mercy" and introducing Katherine Justice. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Callan: Nice People Die at Home (1969) See more »

Soundtracks

Mercy MC Bee
Composed by Bronislau Kaper
Performed by The Serendipity Singers
Conducted by André Previn
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Wagon train western you can practically follow with a check-list...
6 May 2009 | by moonspinner55See all my reviews

In 1843 Missouri, hot-headed senator Kirk Douglas leads a large group of chosen people across rugged terrain to start "a new Jerusalem" in Oregon; he picks a half-blind pioneer scout (mourning the death of his Indian wife!) to help lead them, but immediately clashes with a family man over incidental matters; meanwhile, a sex-starved teenage girl has a fling with a married man, resulting in personal tragedy and an Indian attack (don't ask). A small pox outbreak is falsely reported, there's a wedding, a frigid woman goes insane, and the trail comes to an end at the Grand Canyon. A.B. Guthrie, Jr.'s book becomes somewhat besotted western epic with star-names, mixing vulgar jokes and inanities with ripe old clichés. A voice-over narration and a patriotic song come clean out of nowhere, while snarling Douglas blames himself for a death and asks a servant to whip him. It's cheap and low-brow all the way, but most viewers in the mood for a picture such as this probably won't be disappointed. There are some solid elements worth mentioning: William H. Clothier's outdoor cinematography is fine in the old-fashioned sense; and, although Bronislau Kaper whips up a dusty frenzy with his ridiculous score, the pacing is jaunty throughout and the wagons roll along at a fast clip. Douglas and Richard Widmark manage to retain their movie star allure, though Robert Mitchum was looking haggard by this time (and his performance is intentionally forgettable--he cancels out all his interest in the proceedings with one heavy sigh). Sally Field makes an inauspicious movie debut which I'm fairly certain she'd rather forget, but Lola Albright has a pleasing smile and Michael Witney does well as the handsome married man who can't get his wife to submit...but why does he shoot blindly into a rustling bush at night when it could have been his wife spying on him? Perhaps he was hoping it was! **1/2 from ****


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