Drums Along the Mohawk DVD
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Directed by John Ford
Produced in 1939
Main Language - English
Countries & Regions - American film
John Ford's first film in Technicolor (which recently perfected far richer shadings of colour than had previously been possible), Drums Along the Mohawk sees the director use it to stunning effect.
The film stars Henry Fonda as Revolutionary War-era farmer Gilbert Martin, who, in 1776, has returned with his well-born wife, Lana (Claudette Colbert), to his rustic cabin in the increasingly dangerous Mohawk River valley. At first unaccustomed to the harsh physical challenges of frontier life, Lana adjusts to the work at hand and is soon able to help her husband in the fields. Shortly after they learn that the colonies are at war with the British, their farmhouse is attacked and burned to the ground by a party of Indians. The feisty Widow McKlennar (Edna May Oliver) provides temporary shelter for the couple, but it's only a matter of time before the Indians launch a more brutal assault.
Save for The Quiet Man, Drums Along the Mohawk contains the richest passages of pastoral imagery in Ford's entire canon, the visual beauty nearly upstaging the spectacular and terrifying Indian battles. The performances, particularly Oliver (who garnered an Oscar nomination) as the vinegary widow and the superbly stoic Fonda, enable Ford to again demonstrate the heroism and limitations of rugged individualism. The scenes of an Indian prisoner spread-eagled on a wagon and Gilbert's escape are repeated almost exactly in the 1982 dystopian classic, The Road Warrior.
Publisher: Studio Canal
Length: 99 mins
Aspect ratio: 4:3
Format: DVD Colour
Released: 23rd August 2004
Cat No: OPTD0125