I don’t know much about westerns. I’m not a fan. While not a traditional American western, The Man from Snowy River is my western. True, it is set in Australia, but there are horses, and cowboy hats, and a cattle ranch. For me, that is enough to qualify as a western. The Man from Snowy River is about a young man named Jim Craig, played by Tom Burlinson. His father has just died, and in order to remain in the mountains of Snowy River, he must prove his worth as a horseman. He rides down the mountain and finds work in the stables on the ranch of a wealthy cattleman named Harrison, played by Kirk Douglas. Harrison is a single father of an independent-minded young woman, named Jessica. You see where this is going.
Jim and Jessica fall in love while attempting to break the new stallion, which is the last colt foaled by Old Regret. Old Regret has a story of her own, and is closely tied with the Harrison family, the death of Jessica’s mother, and a mountain man named Spur. Harrison of course does not approve of Jim and Jessica’s relationship, and after a heated argument, Jessica runs away to find Jim in the mountains.
This film is filled with beautiful shots of the Australian landscape, and exciting horse chases. The final action sequence of the film is thrilling, and Jim’s descent down a mountain cliff is not only a great film sequence, but a masterful display of horsemanship. Look for the sequel Return to Snowy River as well, to watch the continuing story of Jim and the Harrisons, and to take another ride down the mountain.
Check the WRL catalog for the availability of The Man from Snowy River