The Big Trail (1930)

Passed   |    |  Adventure, Western, Romance


The Big Trail (1930) Poster

Breck Coleman leads hundreds of settlers in covered wagons from the Mississippi River to their destiny out West.


7.2/10
3,086

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  • John Wayne, BIG TRAIL, THE, Fox, 1930, **I.V.
  • The Big Trail (1930)
  • John Wayne and Marguerite Churchill in The Big Trail (1930)
  • The Big Trail (1930)
  • The Big Trail (1930)
  • The Big Trail (1930)

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Awards

1 win.

Reviews & Commentary

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User Reviews


14 August 2001 | RAS-3
9
| Big, gritty and ... wide screen in 1930?
John Wayne's first starring role just blew me away. Televised letterbox style on AMC, I had to check and make sure I had the right date. Sure enough, this 1930 film was made using a 55 mm wide-screen process. Aside from that, it features some of the grittiest, most realistic footage of the trek west I've seen. Wagons, men and animals are really lowered down a cliff face by rope. Trees are chopped by burly men -- and burly women -- so the train can move another 10 feet. The Indians are not the "pretty boy" city slickers who portrayed them later; they're the real deal. A river crossing in a driving rain storm is so realistic, it has to be real (In fact, I understand that director Raoul Walsh nearly lost the entire cast during this sequence). I could smell the wet canvas. Each day is an agony. The various sub-plots are forgettable but the film as a whole is not. I can't think of another title that can beat The Big Trail in evoking a sense of living history on the trail to Oregon. Bravo.

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