- 7x7 2023
Robert Montgomery Presents: Harvest
Robert Montgomery for NBC
directed by James Sheldon
starring Dorothy Gish, Ed Begley, James Dean, Vaughn Taylor, John Connell, John Dennis, Reba Tassell, Joseph Foley, Nancy Sheridan, Mary Lou Taylor, Tommy Taylor, Frank Tweddell, Pidge Jameson, Peter Lazer, Robert Montgomery (presenter)
written by Sandra Mitchell
Robert Montgomery Presents
It's autumn, harvesting season, the season where farmers are supposed to
reap in theri rewards for a year of work, but this year all of the crops of
farmer Karl Zalinka (Ed Begley) are ruined in a single hailstorm. & as if
that was not all, after his 2 other sons have already left him to make
something of themselves in the big city, his youngest son Paul (James Dean)
wants to leave the farm he was supposed to inherit too, as he has fallen in
love with city girl Arlene (Reba Tassell). & then, only days before his
100th birthday, gramps (Vaughn Taylor) dies too.
Now Paul Zalinka is left all
alone with his wife Ellen (Dorothy Gish), & while their financial problems
are soon overcome by a loan from the bank, their lonliness is not.
young Paul has made it to the city & to Arlene's house, but there he has to
find out she has already found another boyfriend, Kip (Tommy Taylor), & out
of frustration Paul joins the Navy.
To help cheer up her husband, Ellen has
invited all her kids for Thanksgiving though, & at that family reunion,
Karl's middle son Chuck (John Connell) asks him if he could come back to the
farm to help & maybe one day inherit it ... Karl couldn't be happier.
sort of an epic family story watered down to a mere 50-odd minutes, which means
that most of the scenes are not exploited for their full dramatic potential,
& many episodes are even linked by some off-screen narration - which
doesn't really help to get the story going one bit. The story itself is of
course very cheesy & highly predictable, & the underwhelming sugar
coated happy ending doesn't really help either, as all the attempts at drama
are washed away in one go. Stagey direction (as would be the rule in early
television) also is not helping the show, but considering the sappy story &
boring storytelling it doesn't hurt the show all that much.