The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (film)


The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (film)

Infobox Film
name = The Treasure of the Sierra Madre


caption = Theatrical release poster
director = John Huston
producer = Warner Bros.
writer = B. Traven (novel)
John Huston
narrator =
starring = Humphrey Bogart
Walter Huston
Tim Holt
Alfonso Bedoya
Bruce Bennett
music =
cinematography =
editing =
distributor = Warner Bros.
released = January 6 1948
runtime = 126 min.
country = USA
language = English
budget = $3,800,000 (estimated)
preceded_by =
followed_by =
website =
awards = Oscars: Best Director John Huston
Best Writing, Screenplay, John Huston
Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Walter Huston
amg_id = 1:50884
imdb_id = 0040897

"The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" is John Huston's 1948 feature film adaptation of B. Traven's 1927 novel of the same name, in which two American down-and-outers (Humphrey Bogart and Tim Holt) in 1920s Mexico hook up with an old-timer (Walter Huston, the director's father) to prospect for gold. The old-timer accurately predicts trouble, but is willing to go anyway. "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" was one of the first Hollywood films to be shot almost entirely on location outside the United States (in Tampico, Mexico), although the night scenes were filmed back in the studio. The film is quite faithful to the novel.

Story and historical setting

By the 1920s the violence of the Mexican Revolution had largely subsided, although scattered gangs of bandits continued to terrorize the countryside. The newly established post-revolution government relied on the effective, but ruthless, Federal Police, commonly known as the "Federales", to patrol remote areas and dispose of the bandits. Foreigners, like the three American prospectors who are the protagonists in the story, were at very real risk of being killed by the bandits if their paths crossed. The bandits, likewise, were given little more than a "last cigarette" by the army units after capture, even having to dig their own graves first. This is the context in which the three gringos band together in a small Mexican town and set out to strike it rich in the remote Sierra Madre mountains. They ride a train into the hinterlands, surviving a bandit attack enroute. Once out in the desert, Howard, the old-timer of the group, quickly proves to be by far the toughest and most knowledgeable; he is the one to discover the gold they are seeking. A mine is dug, and much gold is extracted, but greed soon sets in and Dobbs (Humphrey Bogart) begins to lose both his trust and his mind, lusting to possess the entire treasure. The bandits then reappear, pretending, very crudely, to be Federales, which leads to the now-iconic line about not needing to show any "stinking badges". After a gunfight, a real troop of Federales appear and drive the bandits away. But when Howard is called away to assist some local villagers, Dobbs and third partner Curtin have a final confrontation, which Dobbs wins, leaving Curtin lying shot and bleeding. However, as he staggers away through the desert, Dobbs is found and killed by some surviving bandits, who, in their ignorance, scatter the gold to the winds. Curtin is discovered and taken to Howard's village, where he recovers. He and Howard witness the bandits' execution by Federales, and learn that the gold is gone. They part ways, Howard returning to his village, and Curtin returning home to America.

Cast

*Humphrey Bogart as Fred C. Dobbs
*Walter Huston as Howard
*Tim Holt as Bob Curtin
*Bruce Bennett as James Cody
*Barton MacLane as Pat McCormick
*Alfonso Bedoya as Gold Hat
*Arturo Soto Rangel as El Presidente
*Manuel Dondé as El Jefe
*José Torvay as Pablo
*Margarito Luna as Pancho

A few notable uncredited actors appear in the film. In an opening cameo, director John Huston is pestered for money by Bogart's character. Actor Robert Blake also appears as a young boy selling lottery tickets. However, the most controversial cameo is Ann Sheridan. Sheridan, who was in Mexico at the time, allegedly did a cameo as a streetwalker. After Dobbs leaves the barbershop in Tampico, he spies a passing prostitute who returns his look. Seconds later, the woman is picked up again but this time in the distance. Some film goers and critics feel the woman looks nothing like Sheridan, but the DVD commentary for the film states that it is she. Many film internet sources, including IMDb, credit Sheridan for the part.

Co-star Tim Holt's father, Jack Holt, a star of silent and early sound Westerns and action films, makes a one-line appearance at the beginning of the film as one of the men down on their luck.

Bruce Bennett, who plays a key role as a rival prospector, had portrayed Tarzan in Edgar Rice Burroughs's own 1935 film version, under Bennett's birth name of Herman Brix.

Quotation

The film is the origin of a famous line, often misquoted as "We don't need no stinking badges!" (homaged in Mel Brooks' "Blazing Saddles", also a Warner Bros. film). The correct dialogue is:

:Gold Hat (Alfonso Bedoya): We are Federales... you know, the mounted police.:Dobbs (Bogart): If you're the police, where are your badges?:Gold Hat (Alfonso Bedoya): Cquote|Badges? We ain't got no badges. We don't need no badges! I don't have to show you any stinkin' badges!

In 2005, the quotation was chosen as #36 on the American Film Institute list, AFI's 100 Years... 100 Movie Quotes.

Awards and legacy

John Huston won the Academy Award for Directing and Academy Award for Writing Adapted Screenplay in 1948 for his work on "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre". Walter Huston, John Huston's father, also won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role in this film, the first father-son win. The film was nominated for the Best Picture award, but lost to Laurence Olivier's film adaptation of "Hamlet".

In 1990, this film was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".

The film is director Paul Thomas Anderson's favorite. In fact, he watched it at night before bed while writing his film "There Will Be Blood". [cite web
url = http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/11/magazine/11daylewis-t2.html?_r=1&oref=slogin
title = The New Frontier's Man
author = Lynn Hirschberg
publisher = New York Times
accessdaymonth = 10 November
accessyear = 2007
]

American Film Institute recognition

*1998 AFI's 100 Years... 100 Movies #30
*2001 AFI's 100 Years... 100 Thrills #67
*2005 AFI's 100 Years... 100 Movie Quotes:
** "Badges? We ain't got no badges! We don't need no badges! I don't have to show you any stinking badges!" #36
*2007 AFI's 100 Years... 100 Movies (10th Anniversary Edition) #38

External links

*imdb title|id=040897|title=The Treasure of the Sierra Madre
*tcmdb title|id=2852|title=The Treasure of the Sierra Madre
* The Internet Archive [http://www.archive.org/details/Lux14 holds an April 18, 1949 radio adaptation of the film] , originally broadcast on "Lux Radio Theater".

References


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

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