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Author Topic: Man in the Wilderness (1971)  (Read 7414 times)
geoman-1
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« on: June 15, 2006, 03:51:08 PM »

Has anyone seen the film "Man in The Wilderness" with
Richard Harris. I thought it was a very good film with great cinematography and a memorable soundtrack. It has minimal dialogue which works well. Any opinions?

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« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2006, 08:35:28 PM »

Yea seen it and enjoyed it, believe its based on a true story too.

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« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2006, 11:07:01 PM »

  I enjoyed Man in the Wilderness, Harris is excellent, as you pointed out with little to no dialogue.  It still suprises me how graphic this movie was, violence-wise.

  This flick always reminded me of "A Man Called Horse" because it deals with the early American west when most westerns deal with post-Civil War themes.  And Harris, a very underrated actor IMO, gives an excellent performance in both.

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« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2006, 07:15:53 AM »

I couldn't agree more.

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« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2008, 06:07:19 PM »


Finally, it's been released on DVD! However, it's been released as a double-feature with "The Deadly Trackers" which is also with Richard Harris. geoman has told me many times to see this, and I will pick this up for sure! Hopefully the picture is clear.

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« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2008, 01:23:36 AM »


What a great film! I finally got the opportunity to view it for the first time tonight on DVD. I'm so happy they finally released this. This has got to be one of the most over-looked classics I've ever seen. Richard Harris gives a stirring performance here. You really are taken into the film and feel this man's inner deamon's, pain, and struggles as he fights to stay alive. The film also has a memorable score which I will soon not forget. This should not be missed!

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geoman-1
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« Reply #6 on: October 11, 2008, 06:53:00 PM »

Glad you liked this film. Your concise review is spot on.
It's one of those films that stay with you long after the credits have rolled.
I must now buy the movie soundtrack Afro

« Last Edit: October 11, 2008, 06:55:41 PM by geoman-1 » Logged
dave jenkins
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« Reply #7 on: October 12, 2008, 10:14:18 AM »

I forgot this had come out. Right, I'll be sure to get a copy.

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« Reply #8 on: May 25, 2013, 11:03:44 PM »

well lookee here! just saw this film for the first time, and what a beauty it is!
a gem you don't hear much about, I can thank y'all who have praised the film on this thread for introducing me to it. And what a film it is!

8.5/10

The greatest risk for a wilderness/survival story is, can you be kept captivated and never bored, and the answer here is a resounding Yes! There isn't a boring moment, this is a just a wonderful movie to experience. The boat is an incredible prop, Harris does a fine job and John Huston is terrific, and a special note to the cinematography, which is absolutely marvelous. The score is terrific too.

The only thing I wasn't so sure about is the ending; I was initially disappointed, but the more I think about it now, the more okay I am with it. (I accidentally looked at the Time Remaining - never advisable - and noticed there were only 4 minutes to go, and I was like, "woah, is that all there is left?")

If you are a Western fan who hasn't seen this yet, make sure to do so...

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« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2013, 04:42:06 PM »

This must have been the most trafficked wilderness available at the time, everything and everybody seem to happen around the apparently dying Harris.  But the movie is entertaining, though I would have gladly done without the flashbacks and the vignette of the giving birth Indian. And the chief's speech (one sentence of which gave the distributor the italian title: "Go with your God, White Man") sounds ridiculous both as to content ("You are immortal") and form. And then I don't understand why Huston (here posing as Noah Cross) who feels like a father to Harris, decides first to cure him, then to leave him there (when he could have have him hoisted on the ark)  giving orders to have him shot  if he doesn't recover in the morning. Bah...And then admitting later he's  sure he has made it. Then he wanted him dead from the start? 7\10

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« Reply #10 on: August 04, 2013, 06:54:58 PM »

This must have been the most trafficked wilderness available at the time, everything and everybody seem to happen around the apparently dying Harris.  But the movie is entertaining, though I would have gladly done without the flashbacks and the vignette of the giving birth Indian. And the chief's speech (one sentence of which gave the distributor the italian title: "Go with your God, White Man") sounds ridiculous both as to content ("You are immortal") and form. And then I don't understand why Huston (here posing as Noah Cross) who feels like a father to Harris, decides first to cure him, then to leave him there (when he could have have him hoisted on the ark)  giving orders to have him shot  if he doesn't recover in the morning. Bah...And then admitting later he's  sure he has made it. Then he wanted him dead from the start? 7\10

well that's the whole ridiculous/hilarious thing about that boat - Huston has 22 mules dragging it across the wilderness, but it apparently never occurs to him (and nobody else thinks, or has the guts, to suggest) to maybe have that thing carry Harris. You can't analyze Huston's actions with logic or morals here. He is not exactly a character whose actions/motivations you can question logically or morally.

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« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2013, 11:20:11 PM »

Yeah: but then we must keep in mind that his illogical behaviour is not depending on the depiction of the character but serving (quite goofily: that's the whole point) the  aim of giving Harris a reason for revenge and the other two characters (Huston and the older man left behind) a reason for obsession and a sense of guilt.

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« Reply #12 on: August 05, 2013, 05:35:16 AM »

I think it was based on a true story http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hugh_Glass

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« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2013, 06:15:06 AM »

Yes, so it says in the opening credits as well.

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« Reply #14 on: September 19, 2013, 07:49:43 AM »

This must have been the most trafficked wilderness available at the time, everything and everybody seem to happen around the apparently dying Harris.  But the movie is entertaining, though I would have gladly done without the flashbacks and the vignette of the giving birth Indian. And the chief's speech (one sentence of which gave the distributor the italian title: "Go with your God, White Man") sounds ridiculous both as to content ("You are immortal") and form. And then I don't understand why Huston (here posing as Noah Cross) who feels like a father to Harris, decides first to cure him, then to leave him there (when he could have have him hoisted on the ark)  giving orders to have him shot  if he doesn't recover in the morning. Bah...And then admitting later he's  sure he has made it. Then he wanted him dead from the start? 7\10
I watched this last night on the occasion of Sarafian's passing, but was disappointed. Titoli has all the problems nailed. How can they think Harris is going to die after they've stitched him up? Have they never seen a dying man before? Can't they tell the difference between a goner and a guy with a chance? Why wouldn't they take him on the boat? It's pulled by a mule train of about 20, so even with Huston still riding it should have been no problem. It wasn't as if Harris was going to slow them down. Then, having made the decision to leave him, why not leave Harris some provisions and things just in case he pulls through? Why leave two guys behind to bury him when he dies? If Huston is so sure he's going to die, why not kill him now, bury him, and move on? Then, Harris seems to make a miraculous recovery--was he just faking? We see him using all his woodland skills to survive--trapping game, building fires, even curing skins! Man, these things take time. As I see it, you can either live off the land OR you can track the guys who've left you behind, there aren't enough hours in the day to do both. But Harris has no trouble keeping pace with Huston and company. And later, as titoli points out, the statement made by Huston about Harris's survival is just nuts. And when they get to the river and the water is low and someone asks about the possibility of it rising after the winter, Huston's response is, "No, we got here too late." Now what the heck is that supposed to mean? D&D would have you believe that the fact that Huston is crazy alibis all these problems. But is his whole crew nuts? They go along with all of this, so they must be. And at the end, they just leave the very valuable fur pelts behind to follow Harris? Fits with the "everybody's nuts" theory, all right, but kind of does damage to the lyrical ending. Harris has come through it all, earned the respect of the Indians, has moved beyond the need for vengeance: the crew, even Huston, begins to follow Harris out of respect. It kind of loses something if they're all insane anyway.

The plot aside, there are too many other things that annoy. Again, per titoli, the flashbacks suck. None of the encounters with the animals is convincing. We run across the Indians too many times (and Harris witnessing at close hand both the ambush of the trapper and his squaw AND the Indian woman giving birth is ridiculous). Finally, the music drove me up the wall.

I wanted to like this film, but at every turn I was rebuffed. 5/10.

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