I am descended from Confederates and I've never allowed current mores to interfere with my enjoyment of a movie like, for instance, Gone With The Wind. However, I must acknowledge that this particular example of pro-slavery dreck is one of the most offensive movies I have ever seen. It is slickly made, with plenty of stars and good action, but the appalling racism and revisionism.....startling even for the period in which it was made....would ruin this film for most of today's audience. This is really the type of movie that makes the viewer wish to apologize to the first black person you can find
Santa Fe Trail (1940) 720p YIFY Movie
Santa Fe Trail (1940)
Santa Fe Trail is a movie starring Errol Flynn, Olivia de Havilland, and Raymond Massey. In 1854, Jeb Stuart, George Custer and other graduates from West Point are posted to Kansas to help pacify the territory before railroad...
IMDB: 6.31 Likes
The Synopsis for Santa Fe Trail (1940) 720p
The story of Jeb Stuart, his romance with Kit Carson Holliday, friendship with George Custer and battles against John Brown in the days leading up to the outbreak of the American Civil War.
The Director and Players for Santa Fe Trail (1940) 720p
The Reviews for Santa Fe Trail (1940) 720p
AnnoyingReviewed byjetanVote: 1/10
The two stars of this film, Ronald Reagan and Errol Flynn show an easy grace, a comfort before the camera, and an abundance of charm. They're both good actors, though not great. Flynn of course, with his English accent, seems slightly out of place as southerner JEB stuart, and Reagan isn't quite as boisterous as one might expect a Custer to be. But then, this is not an historical movie--it's a basic western. As an early buddy flick, Custer and Stuart have a good rapport, and Olivia De Havilland has the camera in love with her most of the movie.
The movie is full of familiar faces, among them Alan Hale and Raymond Massey. The latter is a dead ringer for John Brown and puts in a great performance as the unhinged radical. The plot is a little more interesting than the usual white hat-black hat western, with John Brown on his raids in Kansas and Virginia.
Still this movie is largely fiction--which is too bad since John Brown, a clearly unbalanced religious fanatic, is an interesting case study in early American terrorism; and which brings up issues related to the level of violence that is acceptable in fighting something one considers evil. But again, this is a western, and political and social issues are largely absent--I think the deepest point the movie makes is that Custer and Stuart were brash young officers out to make names for themselves. Which they both did.
A good solid western, not in the "great" category with "High Noon" and "Fort Apache", but certainly first rate.
Errol Flynn is lost and Olivia de Havilland wasted in one of their last films together, an oddball Westerner that straddles the Mason-Dixon line presenting events leading up to the American Civil War.
Not a good film, "Santa Fe Trail" is nevertheless fascinating now because of the political and social undercurrents running through it. Sensitive to Southern moviegoers still smarting 75 years after Appomattox, the filmmakers present a convoluted tale where all of the terribleness of the War Between the States can be laid on the doorstep of that terrible scourge: Abolitionism.
Anti-slavery terrorist John Brown is on the loose, and it's up to Flynn to stop him, as future Confederate legend J.E.B. Stuart, still a U.S. Army officer as the war looms on the horizon. Stuart is presented as a champion not of slavery but of the status quo it is his duty to protect. Still, it's hard to find merit in his stance. "The South will settle it," Stuart says about slavery, "but in its own time and in its own way." No use rushing into righting an 80-year wrong, right?
Director Michael Curtiz and scripter Robert Buckner fall short in terms of story, too. Is this a Western? Or is it a love story? Again, cinematic economics are pretty transparent given how awkwardly Olivia is shoehorned into the film, standing on the sidelines and wringing her hands. She's beautiful and charming, but her scenes with Flynn are overlong compendiums of romantic cliché, made worse by a melodramatic and hyperactive Max Steiner score.
Playing the token liberal here is Ronald Reagan as George Armstrong Custer. Read that last sentence back if you want to know why some people really hate this film. "There's a purpose behind that madness," Custer says of Brown, "one that cannot easily be dismissed." But Custer doesn't protest too long, and the implication is clear that whatever Brown is fighting for doesn't outweigh his endangering the Union, for Custer or Stuart.
Luckily for the filmmakers, they had Raymond Massey on hand to play Brown, eloquent in word but constantly threatening to go off the deep end. Massey was a florid overactor, but he had in Brown the right part and makes the most of it. Even better is Van Heflin, as a nasty bravo named Rader whom Stuart tangles with at West Point and again later on when Rader inserts himself as one of Brown's deputies. Rader's a great foil, allowed to say some worthy things about the anti-slavery cause, but more compelling in how his anger-choked personality comes to clash with that of the self-righteous Brown. Heflin grabs every scene he's in with those beady eyes and high forehead, and it's probably why he rose to movie prominence soon after.
Far less successful is the film's effort to develop a romantic rivalry between Stuart and Custer. We have a pretty good idea de Havilland won't wind up with the Gipper. Alan Hale and Guinn Williams bicker like old maids for the sake of bad comedy, playing a pair of battle-hungry cowhands: "Calling me a rumpot's what hurt me...I haven't had a drink since noon!"
Even Curtiz the celebrated action director falters here. Halfway through the film there's a battle where Brown and his men hold up Stuart's troops, then ride off with a cache of weapons, leaving Stuart's force inexplicably still armed. Vastly outnumbered, Stuart chases them anyway. Brown obliges him by not turning around to fight, leaving the cache behind.
"Hey, wait a minute, they outnumber us three-to-one," protests Custer. With an attitude like that, he'll never make the history books.
However factually and dramatically flawed, "Santa Fe Trail" is one for the history books, in a way that shows how imperfectly the United States was coming to terms with its slave-holding past three generations on. It's not a good film even without its moral dubiousness, but that same dubiousness makes it historically worthy, as a reflection of just how hard it was for a nation to face a searing legacy of accepting the treatment of human beings as cattle.