7.0/10
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Rachel and the Stranger (1948)

Approved | | Adventure, Western | 2 October 1948 (USA)
A widowed farmer takes an indentured servant as his new wife, but the arrival of his old friend threatens their burgeoning relationship.

Director:

Norman Foster

Writers:

Waldo Salt (screenplay), Howard Fast (story "Rachel")
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Loretta Young ... Rachel
William Holden ... Big Davey
Robert Mitchum ... Jim
Gary Gray ... Davey
Tom Tully ... Parson Jackson
Sara Haden ... Mrs. Jackson
Frank Ferguson ... Mr. Green
Walter Baldwin ... Gallus
Regina Wallace Regina Wallace ... Mrs. Green
Edit

Storyline

David Harvey is a widower with a young son, Davey. They live on an isolated Ohio farm during the pioneer days. He wants his son to be raised in the manner his wife would have wanted - with proper schooling, Bible study and proper manners. Rachel, an indentured servant, is sold to David. David then marries her in order that little Davey would have a mother to properly raise him. David shows no real affection towards Rachel since this is a marriage of convenience. This all changes when Jim, a friend of the family comes for a visit. During his stay, David sees that there is more to Rachel than just being a "bonds woman", especially when Jim takes a liking to her. This awakens new feelings in David for Rachel. Written by Kelly

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Man Who Bought Her...The Tall Dark Stranger Who Sought Her! See more »

Genres:

Adventure | Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 October 1948 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Tall Dark Stranger See more »

Filming Locations:

Eugene, Oregon, USA

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$395,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After Mitchum was arrested for possessing marijuana, RKO rushed to release the film to take advantage of the news of Mitchum's arrest. See more »

Goofs

While Davey rushes back from the store to eavesdrop on the transaction, the light and shadows indicate it's mid to late afternoon. Mere minutes later as the camera moves outside again, it is already dusk. See more »

Quotes

Jim: You ain't ordering me off, Davey. I'm leaving of my own accord but not without Rachel. I offered to buy you out fair and square.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Also available in a computer colorized version. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Robert Mitchum: The Reluctant Star (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

Just Like Me
Music by Roy Webb
Lyrics by Waldo Salt
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Rachel and her 3 guys
12 December 2004 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

This is a film that for most of its running time has no other players than the three adult leads and a child. The players had better be good for this one. Fortunately they are and Rachel and the Stranger has a good quiet charm about it.

The title role is played by Loretta Young. She was a year past her Oscar winning performance in The Farmer's Daughter and really at the top of her game. Rachel is a bondservant who is bought by widower William Holden to help out at the family farm, bring back a feminine touch to the place and help raise his son, Gary Gray. Rachel is bought for "eighteen dollars and owing four" by Holden, but frontier proprieties being what they were, Holden has to marry her.

But she's no wife, she's bought and paid for help, until Holden's friend Robert Mitchum shows up and starts looking at her as a desirable woman. Now Holden starts thinking along those lines and the fun begins.

Holden and Mitchum both do very well in typical roles for both at the time. Bill Holden called this his "smiling jim" period which ended with Sunset Boulevard a year later.

Mitchum gets to sing in Rachel and the Stranger and even cut a couple of records of the songs he sings from the film. Not bad for Bob, among the many accomplishments of that complex and talented man was as a singer and songwriter. He didn't do it often enough in movies.

But the movie really turns on Loretta Young's performance. She strikes just the right note as the bondwoman who helps make the whole lot of them a family again.

The movie is also a good depiction of frontier Ohio. An Indian attack is part of the problems the quartet faces and the Shawnees were very active there until the Battle of Fallen Timbers which took place in 1795. Figure the action to be taking place slightly before that.

A nice entertaining film.


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