The Return of Frank James (Bilingual) [Import]
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Henry King's 1939 Jesse James sidestepped history to embrace folklore's version of the outlaw as a populist hero. This sequel is pure dime-novel fiction, with Jesse's brother (Henry Fonda) getting even, albeit reluctantly, with Bob Ford (John Carradine), "the dirty little coward" who back-shot his leader to win amnesty. The revenge theme would seem tailor-made for 20th CenturyFox's newly signed directorial talent, Fritz Lang, to whip up a fine Teutonic frenzy. However, the maestro of Die Nibelungen treated the material straight, like the good, impersonal Hollywood craftsman he was eager to be taken for, at that point in his career. Besides, Lang loved the West and Western lore, and was happy working in the Western genre. (Check out his next Fox assignment, Western Union, for a richer confirmation of this.) The Technicolor is vivid, nowhere more so than in the red lips of Gene Tierney in her screen debut. --Richard T. Jameson --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Directed by Fritz Lang
This Technicolor sequel to Jesse James (1939) does without the services of the earlier film's star Tyrone Power, who after all was shot dead by that "dirty little coward" Bob Ford (John Carradine). Repeating his portrayal of western outlaw Frank James is Henry Fonda who has retired from his life of crime to become a peaceful farmer, though he has never given up his search for the treacherous Ford. The killer and his cohorts are eventually rounded up, but are pardoned due to political intervention. That's when Frank slaps on six-guns once more to seek his own form of justice. Featured in the cast is Henry Hull as Major Rufus Cobb, a crusading newspaperman and Jackie Cooper is Clem, the headstrong young sprout whom Frank has taken under his wing. Making her screen debut is Gene Tierney as Eleanor Stone a reporter from the East who wants to tell Frank's true story to the world.
Special footnote: ~ The studio bought the rights to the James Brothers but changed the facts for entertainment. Although Frank surrendered 6 months after Jesse James' murder, both Ford brothers were already dead and Frank had nothing to do with their deaths ~ The original treatment had Frank romantically interested in the reporter played by Gene Tierney, but the studio became fearful of a possible lawsuit by Frank's widow and/or son, so it was eliminated from the script.
1. Fritz Lang [Director]
Date of Birth: 5 December 1890 - Vienna, Austria-Hungary [now Austria]
Date of Death: 2 August 1976 - Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California
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Most recent customer reviews
Very good movie. Well made with real action. Lots for great actors.
Made on location in the dessert.
It's great to see these actors in their prime. Read more
This sequel to 1939's far superior "Jesse James" misses much of the humor and stark imagery that made the first film such a (underrated)masterpiece. Read morePublished on May 3 2001
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