The Big Trail Overview:

The Big Trail (1930) was a Adventure - Western Film directed by Raoul Walsh and produced by Winfield R. Sheehan.

The Big Trail was inducted into the National Film Registry in 2006.

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Quotes from

Red Flack, Wagon Boss: Well, if it ain't Bill Thorpe, hey? I always thought you was hung and planted, I expect.
Bill Thorpe: No, my time ain't arrived yet.
Red Flack, Wagon Boss: But it looks as though it might be drawing close.
Bill Thorpe: Well, I've been promised a hanging bee if I don't get out on the Penzy Belle, and the Captain promised me a necktie party if I set foot on the boat. It's a case of nowhere to go.
Red Flack, Wagon Boss: It appears to me you do your shooting by daylight with too many people looking on, hey?


Breck Coleman, Wagon Train Scout: We can't turn back! We're blazing a trail that started in England. Not even the storms of the sea could turn back the first settlers. And they carrie dit on further. They blazed it on through the wilderness of Kentucky. Famine, hunger, not even massacres could stop them. And now we picked up the trail again. And nothing can stop us! Not even the snows of winter, nor the peaks of the highest mountain. We're building a nation and we got to suffer! No great trail was ever built without hardship. And you got to fight! That's right. And when you stop fighting, that's death. What are you going to do, lay down and die? Not in a thousand years! You're going on with me!


Breck Coleman, Wagon Train Scout: Say, Zeke, who was the he-grizzly that just went by?
Zeke: That's Red Flack. He's bullwhackin' for Wellmore. He's gonna whack Wellmore's train clear through to Oregon.
Windy Bill: You reckon you'll ever find out who downed old Ben?
Breck Coleman, Wagon Train Scout: It's just possible that a certain low-down coyote left his sign there.


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Facts about

Incredibly, five different versions of this film were shot simultaneously. (1) a 70mm version in the Grandeur process for exhibition in the biggest movie palaces; (2) a standard 35mm version for general release; (3) a 35mm alternate French language version La piste des géants' (4) a 35 mm alternate Spanish language version La gran jornada, and (5) a 35 mm alternate German language version Die große Fahrt. The three alternate language versions were shot with (mostly) different casts.
This film was shot in both the wide screen format, synonymous with "Cinemescope", as well as the standard format. Special wide screens were needed. Most theaters featured only the standard version of the film. Moviegoers at that time,the 1930s, had difficulty paying higher ticket prices to accommodate the new process. This process was soon abandoned but reappeared in 1953 with The Robe, produced in Cinemescope. Television had taken some revenue away from the movie industry and the economy had improved.
Reportedly this film debuted at a running time of 158 minutes. However, this is unconfirmed as of May 2008.
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National Film Registry

The Big Trail

Released 1930
Inducted 2006
(Sound)




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Also directed by Raoul Walsh




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Also produced by Winfield R. Sheehan




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Also released in 1930




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