Years before Kevin Costner danced with wolves, Robert Redford headed to the mountains to escape civilization in Sydney Pollack's wilderness western. Around 1850, ex-soldier Johnson (Redford) decides that he would rather live alone as a mountain man in Colorado than deal with society's constraints. After a series of setbacks, he meets grizzled ...
Years before Kevin Costner danced with wolves, Robert Redford headed to the mountains to escape civilization in Sydney Pollack's wilderness western. Around 1850, ex-soldier Johnson (Redford) decides that he would rather live alone as a mountain man in Colorado than deal with society's constraints. After a series of setbacks, he meets grizzled mountain veteran Bear Claws (Will Geer), who teaches him how to survive. Jeremiah strives to live as peaceably as possible in the rugged environment, trading with the native Crow tribe, adopting a boy (Josh Albee) after his family is massacred, and even marrying the daughter (Delle Bolton) of a Flathead chief in order to avoid confrontation. He settles into a mountain home with his family, but the U.S. cavalry, complete with a puritanical Reverend, interrupt the idyll to compel Jeremiah to lead them over the mountains and through a Crow burial ground to rescue white settlers. After the Crow kill his family in retaliation, Jeremiah's frenzied moment of payback precipitates a long-running vendetta, turning him into a legendary Indian killer at the expense of his original ideals, on the way to a final moment of grace. Spectacularly shot on location in Utah, the film captures both the appeal and the challenge of the landscape that Jeremiah chooses over civilization. With an unglamorous performance by Redford and a story that questioned white colonialism while mythologizing the man of nature, Jeremiah Johnson appealed to its 1972 audience and became one of the biggest hits of the year. Wavering between heroicizing Jeremiah for surviving and damning him for killing, Jeremiah Johnson took its place among the Vietnam-era cycle of critical westerns, like Arthur Penn's Little Big Man (1970) and Robert Altman's McCabe and Mrs. Miller (1971), that condemned civilization for corrupting the wilderness and preventing individuals from going pacifistically native. Lucia Bozzola, Rovi
Robert Redford, Will Geer, Stefan Gierasch, Allyn Ann McLerie, Delle Bolton, Charles Tyner, Josh Albee. Very good in very good packaging. Language: English. Run time: 110 mins. Originally released: 1972. Very nice shape. Not a rental.
It is a good thing that Alibris is able and willing to step in when other DVD and download companies miss opportunities to provide the greatest movies available. One cannot always find films like Jeremiah Johnson that cry out for another look.
Aug 24, 2011
Old but Excellent
In this age of "chick flicks" " kiddie fluff" & films for those of a "sensitive nature" this film remains a classic tale of what our country was like in it's infant stage. Whether you've seen it before or not, order a copy, slip off to your garage or workshop and enjoy.
Great scenery, superior storyline, wonderous imagery. The DVD version made me ask myself why we ever had VHS.