In Bend of the River James Stewart stars as Glyn McLyntock, a former Missouri raider hoping to make a new life while keeping his past a secret. He is hired to guide pioneers into Oregon to start a farming community, en route saving Emerson Cole (Arthur Kennedy) from a lynching. From Portland the party proceeds by riverboat, then across country, and finally build their settlement, but supplies for the winter sold to them in Portland by Tom Hendricks (Howard Petrie) fail to arrive so McLyntock sets out to get them.
But a gold rush has hit Portland and Hendricks has reneged on the deal for more lucrative offers. McLyntock, with help from professional gambler Trey Wilson (Rock Hudson) and Cap’n Mello (Chubby Johnson), steals the supply-laden riverboat and is pursued by Hendricks and his men. After a spectacular chase, McLyntock almost reaches the settlement but Cole, lured by the value of the cargo, tries to steal it…
This superior western gains considerably from excellent exterior location work at Mount Hood in Oregon and along the Sandy and Columbia rivers, vividly photographed by Irving Glassberg. Mann’s impressive use of location was matched by his firm handling of both narrative and actors. ‘The performances, topped by James Stewart’s, are excellent,’ wrote Variety, ‘Anthony Mann’s vigorous direction makes sure that as much action as possible has been crowded into the footage without sacrificing characterisation.’
USA / Universal / 91 minutes / 1952
Writers:Borden Chase, from the novel Bend of the Snake by Bill Gulick,
James Stewart as Glyn McLyntock
Rock Hudson as Trey Wilson
Jay C. Flippen as Jeremy Baile
Julie Adams as Laura Baile
Chubby Johnson as Cap’n Mello
Stepin Fetchit as Adam
Howard Petrie as Tom Hendricks
Frances Bavier as Mrs. Prentiss
Royal Dano as Long Tom
Harry Morgan as Shorty
Arthur Kennedy as Emerson Cole
Lori Nelson as Marjie Baile
Jack Lambert as Red
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