Jeremiah Johnson (1972)

Genres - Western  |   Sub-Genres - Revisionist Western  |   Run Time - 107 min.  |   Countries - United States  |   MPAA Rating - PG
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Review by Brendon Hanley

Three years and four failures after Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Jeremiah Johnson was the hit that Robert Redford needed. It had a man-against-society edge that would be a hallmark of many Redford pictures, including Tell Them Willie Boy Is Here, Three Days of the Condor, and The Electric Horseman. In the context of early-1970s American culture, the film's environmental, anti-establishment, Henry David Thoreau-inspired message obviously struck a chord with audiences. Redford and director Sydney Pollack had worked together once before, on the woeful Tennessee Williams adaptation This Property is Condemned, but Johnson and the majority of their further collaborations would become successes (The Way We Were, Out of Africa). Pollack mortgaged his home to complete the film, which ran over-budget due to the extensive location shooting in Utah's Zion National Park. The mountain areas are wonderfully shot by cinematographer Duke Callaghan.