Save Yourself From September Dawn

by Alan Rapp on August 23, 2007

in Movie Reviews 

  • Title: September Dawn
  • IMDb: link

September Dawn

What a horrible film.  The “true untold story” of the Mountain Meadows massacre is a blueprint for all future filmmakers on how not to make a film.  Filled with a heavy handed message, simplistic characters, insipid dialogue, religious intolerance, and a laughable love story, the script for this would have been better used as toilet paper.  From beginning to end September Dawn is a mess.

A wagon train of settlers are traveling west.  The good Christians making up the wagon train pass through the Utah Territory and come face to face with the vicious evil Mormons led by a diabolical Jacob Samuelson (Jon Voight) and lorded over by the emperor of evil Brigham Young (Terrence Stamp).  You remember the movies Hollywood used to make about evil bloodthirsty Indian savages?  Well Christopher Cain brings the style back using Mormons instead.

If you were able to read that paragraph and 1. keep a straight face and 2. not be revolted, then here’s a bloodthirsty bit of religious intolerance that’s just up your alley.  Against the backdrop of the bloodthirsty Mormons and the pure as snow Christians, director and co-writer Christopher Cain gives us a love story between the fair Emily (Tamara Hope) and Jacob’s son Jonathan (Trent Ford) who provides the only “good” character on the Mormon side (as he isn’t a coward, or bloodthirsty, or a brainless follower, and he doesn’t believe in polygamy – damn, could they make him any more “Christian?”).

This bloated enterprise feels like a Made-For-TV movie, which is where it belongs.  Aside from the anvil-like heavy handedness of the story we are stuck with a teenage rip-off Romeo and Juliet love story which if filled with some of the worst dialogue ever uttered on film.

There are films that get funny when they are so awful, and then there are films that are simply dreadful.  September Dawn is the later.  It’s just astonishingly bad that I’d almost recommend people see it to believe it, but not even I’m that cruel.  September Dawn is one of the worst films of the year.  If you’re wondering how the film earned half a razor, well, the scenery is nice.

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