Two wagon caravans converge at what is now Kansas City, and combine for the westward push to Oregon. On their quest the pilgrims will experience desert heat, mountain snow, hunger, and ... See full summary »
Before seeing this film and writing about it I did some research and saw that UFA cinema in Germany also made a film about Johan Sutter. They even did some location shooting in the USA. Imagine a Nazi western. Now that would have proved interesting.
Having seen Sutter's Gold the elephantine film that sank the Carl Laemmle regime at Universal Pictures I can now see the problem. Not that the film was anything like the real story of the California Gold Rush and how it destroyed Sutter's Empire, but the story is told in such a pedestrian and ponderous fashion you never really get involved in the character.
Sutter himself was not that sympathetic a figure either. He may have seen himself as the great patriarchal landowner, others saw him as a tyrant and something of a charlatan. I'm not sure Edward Arnold when playing Sutter knew what to make of him either. He did in fact die impoverished trying to get what he considered proper recompense for the land he cultivated.
Maybe someone will tell the story truer and better.
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