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Jeremiah Johnson

Where to Watch Jeremiah Johnson


Jeremiah Johnson is a western drama film from 1972, directed by Sydney Pollack and starring Robert Redford as the eponymous character. Providing an in-depth look at a lifestyle far removed from the urban sophistication of today, the movie offers a glimpse into the early 19th-century era and a man’s struggle to eke out a living in the challenging landscape of the Rocky Mountains. Joined by fellow actors Will Geer and Delle Bolton, Robert Redford delivers one of his most memorable performances in this film.

Set in mid-1800s America; Jeremiah Johnson, a battle-worn veteran who, after fighting in the Mexican-American War, escapes the tragedies of civilization to live in the wild. Seeking solitude, he seizes his chance to enjoy a life of adventure and discovery, untouched by societal norms. However, his quiet life is disturbed by the myriad challenges and hazards endemic to this open wilderness.

Johnson, meticulously portrayed by Redford, is initially a novice in the wilderness, learning through trial, error, and hardships. Redford effectively embodies his character's sense of resilience and perseverance as he grows from an innocent greenhorn braving the wilderness to a seasoned mountain man survivalist making his home in the wild and setting up trade with the native tribes.

One early encounter with the gnarled veteran trapper (performance beautifully crafted by actor Will Geer), raises Johnson’s survival skills significantly. This transformative friendship enriches the screenplay, adding both humorous and dramatic elements. Geer’s character serves as a mentor, imparting invaluable trapper skills and knowledge of the Rockies and its inhabitants.

Delle Bolton provides the love interest in the film, playing Swann, a Flathead Indian woman, who becomes Johnson’s wife. Their relationship unfolds gently against the backdrop of raw nature, allowing audiences to experience the complex intercultural dynamics between early settlers and Indigenous people. The sense of a family, although unconventional, trying to survive in the harsh wilderness, adds an emotional touch to the film.

The toughness of the landscape is a constant presence in the film. Wild animals, hostile tribes, ruthless trappers, and the severity of Mother Nature serve as complex characters themselves, molding Johnson into an embodiment of the classic American frontiersman. There is one particular sequence in the film where Redford's character is forced into a conflict with the Crow tribe that sets the course for the subsequent events.

Jeremiah Johnson represents the rugged spirit of the American Frontier, transitioning from the greenhorn in the wilderness to the mythic figure of the Mountain Man. The narrative primarily progresses around human adaptability, testing one's limits, and the quest for freedom in an unforgiving landscape. It explores themes of self-reliance, resilience, survival, solitude, and encounters with wildlife, tribes, and complexities of life in raw nature.

Sydney Pollack explores these themes in his direction, making the landscape as much a character in the film as the humans who inhabit it. The cinematography beautifully captures this naturalism, immersing audiences in the high-altitude atmosphere of the Rocky Mountains. The snow-blanketed peaks, the rushing rivers, the tranquil forests: all these elements are filmed to create both a sense of wonder and dread, encapsulating the raw beauty and extreme challenges that come with inhabiting the wild. Pollack's blend of shots gives each scene an epic sense of scope that accentuates the wild's grandeur, dwarfing the human figure in contrast, thereby highlighting Johnson's real fight against the land.

The film's score matches the theme perfectly, with echoing flutes and a guitar's strumming blending subtly into the wilderness audio landscape. The quietness is just as important as the noises of animals, wind, and water, reflecting the isolation and peace that Johnson seeks in the mountains.

Jeremiah Johnson is a poignant and compelling movie experience that’s rich with stunning visuals, excellent performances, life-affirming messages, and a stirring exploration of frontier life. It's a cinematic ode to the wilderness, the solitary life of the frontiersman, and the spirit of the American West wrapped up in the epic journey of one man - Jeremiah Johnson. This makes it a must-watch for anyone who loves a well-told story of survival against all odds.

Jeremiah Johnson is a Adventure, Western movie released in 1972. It has a runtime of 108 min.. Critics and viewers have rated it moderate reviews, with an IMDb score of 7.6. It also holds a MetaScore of 75.

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Where can I stream Jeremiah Johnson movie online? Jeremiah Johnson is available to watch and stream, buy on demand, download at Amazon Prime, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD, Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Jeremiah Johnson for a limited time or purchase the movie for downloading.

Sydney Pollack
Robert Redford, Will Geer
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