HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Pathfinder
Skatetown, USA
Donbass
He Loves Me... He Loves Me Not
Mary Poppins Returns
Beyond the Sky
Sorry to Bother You
Last Days, The
Man Who Killed Hitler and Then The Bigfoot, The
Being Frank: The Chris Sievey Story
Once Upon a Time in London
King Lear
Under the Silver Lake
Satan's Mistress
Border
Lemonade Joe
Earth Maiden Arjuna
Sons of Katie Elder, The
Soldier, The
Mr. Topaze
Aquaman
One, Two, Three
Bad Times at the El Royale
Caretaker, The
Old Man and the Gun, The
Song of Bernadette, The
Creed II
Anna and the Apocalypse
Return of the Hero
White Reindeer, The
Lizzie
Wicked, Wicked
Faces Places
Strange Woman, The
Ralph Breaks the Internet
Sky Bandits
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Devil's Sword, The
Leprechaun Returns
Man in the Wilderness
   
 
Newest Articles
Monster Dog: Cujo on Blu-ray
For Christ's Sake: Jesus Christ Superstar and The Last Temptation of Christ
Not In Front of the Children: Inappropriate Kids Movies
Deeper into Ozploitation: Next of Kin and Fair Game
Between the Wars: Babylon Berlin Series 1&2 on DVD
Hard Luck Story: Detour on Blu-ray
Oh, What Happened to You? The Likely Lads on Blu-ray
Killer Apps: The Rise of the Evil 60s Supercomputers
How 1970s Can You Get? Cliff Richard in Take Me High vs Never Too Young to Rock
A Perfect Engine, An Eating Machine: The Jaws Series
Phwoar, Missus! Sexytime for Hollywood
He-Maniacs: Ridiculous 80s Action
All's Welles That Ends Welles: Orson Welles Great Mysteries Volume 1 on DVD
Shut It! The Sweeney Double Bill: Two Blu-rays from Network
Network Sitcom Movie Double Bill: Till Death Us Do Part and Man About the House on Blu-ray
   
 
  Canyon Passage Pioneer ProblemsBuy this film here.
Year: 1946
Director: Jacques Tourneur
Stars: Dana Andrews, Brian Donlevy, Susan Hayward, Patricia Roc, Ward Bond, Hoagy Carmichael, Fay Holden, Stanley Ridges, Lloyd Bridges, Andy Devine, Victor Cutler, Rose Hobart, Halliwell Hobbes, James Cardwell, Onslow Stevens
Genre: Western
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Oregon in the 1850s, and the civilisation of the white men is starting to make its presence felt. One of those pioneers is Logan Stewart (Dana Andrews), who rides into a rain-lashed small town with bags of gold to take to what passes for the local bank for weighing. He has quite a bit of money there, and is anxious to get back to his home in another small town some way away, but first he has to meet up with Lucy (Susan Hayward), the fiancée of his best friend George Camrose (Brian Donlevy) who wants to be escorted there too. He tells her he wants an early start, but that night in his hotel room someone breaks in to steal his gold - and Logan thinks he knows who it is...

Director Jacques Tourneur was not best recognised for his westerns as if he is remembered today it will be for his atmospheric horrors or the cult film noir Out of the Past, but he did make a few. Canyon Passage was the first, adapted from a novel by Ernest Haycox by Ernest Pascal, and an odd patchwork of a film it was. Scene by scene, taken individually, it's very effective, but string them all together and it's a bumpy ride, ranging from coy romance to murder and rape - neither shown to any great explicitness, but their presence adds to the uncertainty of tone.

This is a tale of pioneers after all, and they didn't have it easy, but there's a moist-eyed approach to their tribulations that coupled with the glorious scenery makes the rough times the characters suffer almost glamorous. Logan thinks that general hoodlum Bragg (Ward Bond is worryingly convincing as the ne'erdowell) has attempted to steal his gold, but this aspect of the story is neglected for much of the running time, preferring to concentrate on the life around the settlement where Logan lives and the hero's love life. The leads are mismatched couples, with Logan wooing English rose Caroline (imported star Patricia Roc) when he should be going after Lucy, and George should be with the wife of the man he gambles away his money to every night.

Donlevy isn't really up to suggesting inner conflicts, and he and Andrews could have swapped roles without much difference in the result, but the relationships depicted are interesting ones. As if Bragg wasn't enough for the community to contend with, they still haven't been accepted by the resident Indian tribe who are itching for an excuse to raise hell. After a new cabin is built for a new couple in the area, the Indians have to be appeased, and the two threats to the staus quo collide when Bragg goes too far (firing on Logan and Lucy in the forest minutes before wasn't enough for him, obviously). Add in Hoagy Carmichael singing at various points (imagine him as James Bond and wonder what Ian Fleming was thinking) and you have a mishmash that may well have ran smoother on the page, but has an attraction born of its slightly awkward fit into the usual traits of the genre; a longer running time would have given all this more space to breathe.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3193 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Andrew Pragasam
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Paul Shrimpton
Darren Jones
George White
Stately Wayne Manor
Paul Smith
   

 

Last Updated: