The Big Country


(out of 5)

Exciting western that treads on a pacifist theme.  plays an eastern sailor who comes to the wide, wild west to marry .  When he gets there he finds himself in the middle of an ages-old feud between Baker’s father () and the head of a vicious, trashy family of criminals () who are fighting over a piece of land owned by .   Simmons’ property includes a river where cattle go to get water, and the owning of this property, which these men don’t feel should stay in the hands of a spinster schoolteacher, predicts the success of whichever rancher will outdo the other.  Over the period of the film’s three hours, Peck’s decision to remain neutral despite incendiary behaviour from both sides, not to mention his duty to his fiancee and his growing affection for Simmons, will see him endure some pretty scary circumstances. With gorgeous photography that utilizes the expansive scenery to its full potential, the film features whipcrack direction by William Wyler and terrific performances, especially a masterful Ives and  as his rascal of a son.


USA, 1958

Directed by

Screenplay by , , , adaptation by , , based on the novel by 

Cinematography by 

Produced by , William Wyler

Music by

Production Design by

Costume Design by ,

Film Editing by ,

Academy Awards 1958

Golden Globe Awards 1958

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