Oregon Trail Hosting

The Oregon Trail on Film – Meek’s Cutoff

Meek's CutoffShown at the 2011 Bird’s Eye View Film Festival, Meek’s Cutoff is the latest offering from auteur Kelly Reichardt, renowned for her minimalistic aesthetic and appeal to the underdog.

It is a revisionist Western that reexamines the role of both Native Americans and women, focusing on both of their distrust of white males. It is based very loosely on a historic event, Meek’s Cutoff.

The real Meek Cutoff was a covered wagon road that branched off of the Oregon Trail in Vale, which is northeastern Oregon. The path led to the Deschutes River and continues into the The Dalles.

Steven Meek led emigrants on the alternate route that avoided the Blue Mountains and instead took them into the desert of Eastern Oregon. Around 200 wagons and 1,000 people followed Meek where no wagons had traveled before. At least 23 people died on the trek from Mountain Fever and other ailments and another 25 died when they arrived in The Dalles.

Meeks Cutoff Film
Read a review of this feminist Western.

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