Stars Fell On Henrietta, The
Entertainment: +2 1/2
Acceptability: +2

In the depression days of 1935, an oil boom has turned the town of Henrietta, Texas, into a bustling swirl of activity and commerce. Just outside of Henrietta, veteran oil promoter and driller, Mr. Cox (Robert Duvall), is rescued from a storm by dirt farmer Don Day (Aidan Quinn). Once on Day's farm, Mr. Cox can just smell the oil underneath his land. So, he tries to persuade Day to collect $5,000 from his neighbors to drill a well on his farm. Day can't raise the money, but Cox tries all sorts of schemes to finance the well, including robbery. And finally the derrick goes up and the drilling gets under way. Excitement and tension builds as the drill penetrates deeper toward its target. Although he resorts to robbery, Mr. Cox is a gentle, kindhearted man who likes and respects people. But Don is impetuous and almost loses his wife (Frances Fisher) who is dead-set against his oil venture. THE STARS FELL ON HENRIETTA is an enjoyable, believable story with some action and surprises along the way. It will provide a pleasant evening at the movies.

The story features some good God-fearing folks living in a era which was kinder and gentler than today. They aren't perfect, though, and both Mr. Cox and Don Day are willing to cut some corners to pursue their dream of wealth. Don overrides his wife's vehement objections to spending any of their meager savings on a wildcat well. In desperation, Cox implements actions to relieve a rich oil man (Brian Dennehy) and a restaurant owner from a considerable amount of cash. But he always graciously backs off when a prospective investor turns down his deal. Also, he willingly attends church with Don and his family and is kind to Don's two young daughters. His old friends like him and one evens says he will pray for him. Since many of the characters are rugged oil men, a number of damns and hells are spoken along with two mild slang profanities. But, in keeping with the film's genteel nature, no obscenities or sexual content are present. Violence is held to some mild striking, rough treatment and a gun shot wound. It is refreshing to find a movie which is not populated with the degenerate, perverse characters so often found in today's films.

Preview Reviewer: John Evans
Distributor: Warner Brothers, 4000 Warner Blvd., Burbank, CA 91522

Crude Language: Many (30) times-Mild 26, Moderate 4
Obscene Language: None
Profanity: Few (3) times - Regular 2 (Jeez, God); Exclamatory 1
Violence: Many times - Moderate (boxing match in bar, accidental injuries, rough treatment, strike on head, slap, gun threats and one gun shot wound, oil well fire)
Sexual Intercourse: None
Nudity: None
Homosexual Conduct: None
Sexually Suggestive Action/Dialog: None
Drug Abuse: Few times (drinking in bar and restaurant)
Other: Man urinates on ground-rear view; man says he will pray for another; people attend church; man asks God to bless another; wife reads Bible; man kind to children
Running Time:
Intended Audience: Teenagers and adults

Copyright Preview Family Movie Review (