Heartland was in production about the same time as Michael Cimino's Heaven's Gate - Heartland cost a fraction to make but is 10 times the piece of film.
Heaven's Gate was "the biggest and most expensive ($40 mil in 1980!) Hollywood flops of all time, its failure resulted in the sale of the United Artists studio to MGM" -imdb entry
Heartland cost a few hundred thousand dollars and benefits from great writing, direction, photography and acting. It easily draws you into the beauty, joys, hardships and sorrow of pioneer life.
It's sad that Hollywood sometimes would pour millions into turkeys (based on a director's single big hit) and neglect such a wonderful story.
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