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River of No Return
     

River of No Return

4.0 2
Director: Otto Preminger

Cast: Robert Mitchum, Marilyn Monroe, Rory Calhoun

 

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Director Otto Preminger's only western, River of No Return is set in Canada during the 19th century Gold Rush. Farmer Matt Calder (Robert Mitchum) is released from prison after serving a sentence for shooting a man in the back to protect a friend. He arrives in a small town to retrieve his young son, Mark (Tommy Rettig), who has befriended a sultry saloon

Overview

Director Otto Preminger's only western, River of No Return is set in Canada during the 19th century Gold Rush. Farmer Matt Calder (Robert Mitchum) is released from prison after serving a sentence for shooting a man in the back to protect a friend. He arrives in a small town to retrieve his young son, Mark (Tommy Rettig), who has befriended a sultry saloon singer, Kay (Marilyn Monroe). Matt is also friendly with Kay, and thanks her profusely for looking after Mark, but distrusts her paramour, Harry Weston (Rory Calhoun)- a gambler with the morals of an alley cat. Matt and Mark return to their rural homestead, but soon glimpse Kay and Harry on a sinking raft, apparently en route to make good on a gold claim; Matt rescues the two of them, but doesn't count on Harry doing an about face, beating him up, and stealing his horse and gun; Kay stays behind to look after Matt. Meanwhile, the Indians go on the warpath, and the defenseless trio decides to seek refuge by fleeing the farm and sailing down the river on a raft. En route, the son - thanks to Kay's doing - is unexpectedly disillusioned about the father's original crime. Moreover, as Matt approaches town, he begins to plot a decisive revenge against Harry.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Not a career highpoint for either its stars or its director, River of No Return is a moderately enjoyable western (by way of genre, not geography). As is often the case, the script is the main culprit here. The story seems to be cobbled together from here and there, with little depth or realistic motivation for the characters; too often, it seems these people are behaving in this way merely to service the plot. However, there have been many better films crafted from scripts that were no better, and had director Otto Preminger been working at the top of his form, River might have been something special. Not that Preminger is asleep at the wheel -- many of the action sequences are thrilling (if sometimes too obviously faked), and a lot of viewers will bite one or two nails along the way. In addition, the director takes full advantage of his CinemaScope and stereophonic sound to create a lushly beautiful visual and aural picture. But he too often seems to have left the actors (and their characters) to fend for themselves. Marilyn Monroe and Robert Mitchum are fine (although they've both done much better work elsewhere), but there's little chemistry between them. Many will find Monroe, cast somewhat against type, out of her element here, but she pulls it off quite respectfully -- and she gets to work some of her curious vocal magic on four songs, bringing them off very well. Equally as important, Preminger photographs her unnatural beauty as carefully as he does the scenery. Despite its flaws, River has enough entertainment value to make it worth watching.

Product Details

Release Date:
07/31/2012
UPC:
0024543817062
Original Release:
1954
Rating:
NR
Source:
20th Century Fox
Presentation:
[Full Frame, Wide Screen]
Sound:
[DTS 5.1-Channel Surround Sound, Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Time:
1:31:00
Sales rank:
23,759

Special Features

Original Theatrical Trailer; More Monroe Movie Trailers

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Robert Mitchum Matt Calder
Marilyn Monroe Kay Weston
Rory Calhoun Harry Weston
Tommy Rettig Mark Calder
Murvyn Vye Dave Colby
Douglas Spencer Sam Benson
Don Beddoe Ben
Will Wright Merchant
Hal Baylor Young Punk
Larry Chance Actor
John Cliff Actor
John Doucette Spectator in the Black Nugget
Mitchell Kowal Actor
Ann McCrea Actor
Fay Morley Actor
Paul Newlan Prospector
Barbara Nichols Blonde Dancer
Ralph Sanford Bartender
Harry Seymour Actor
Arthur Shields The Minister
John Patrick Veitch Actor
Geneva Gray Actor
Ed Hinton A Gambler
Claire André Surrey Driver
Edmund Cobb A Barber
Jarma Lewis Dancer
Jack Mather Dealer at Card Table
Harry Monty Actor

Technical Credits
Otto Preminger Director
Chester L. Bayhi Set Decoration/Design
Jack Cole Choreography
Ken Darby Songwriter
Frank Fenton Screenwriter
Addison Hehr Art Director
Paul Helmick Asst. Director
Roger Heman Sound/Sound Designer
Ray Kellogg Special Effects
Joseph La Shelle Cinematographer
Louis Lantz Original Story
Charles LeMaire Costumes/Costume Designer
Louis Loeffler Editor
Cyril Mockridge Score Composer
Lionel Newman Songwriter,Musical Direction/Supervision
Ben Nye Makeup
Stanley Crea Rubin Producer
Walter Scott Set Decoration/Design
William Travilla Costumes/Costume Designer
Lyle Wheeler Art Director

Videos

Customer Reviews

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River of No Return 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
merri_moo More than 1 year ago
If you love Marilyn Monroe this is a great one to watch. She sings, is sexy and has an emotion range.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago