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Great Performances

Life on the Mississippi
Not Rated
TV Episode | 115 min | Music

Most mid-19th-century Mississippi River boys dreamed of occupying that pinnacle of power and glamour, the pilot house of a riverboat. In a riot of local color, this film tells how, unlike many, Sam's dream comes true. A callow teenager, he...See moreMost mid-19th-century Mississippi River boys dreamed of occupying that pinnacle of power and glamour, the pilot house of a riverboat. In a riot of local color, this film tells how, unlike many, Sam's dream comes true. A callow teenager, he talks the tough but consummate Horace Bixby into making him his apprentice on the "Paul Jones," eventually following him to the much finer "Aleck Scott." Meanwhile, he is already spinning fantastic yarns to everyone from awe-struck lads ashore, to fellow "cub pilots", to young lady passengers who catch his eye. Things temporarily take a turn for the worse when Bixby must attend a meeting and leave Sam to work under Brown, a dour tyrant with a grudge against him. Written by Paul Emmons See less
Read more: Plot summary
Writers
Composer
William P. Perry (as William Perry)
Cinematographer
Casting Director
Status
Edit Released
Updated Nov 24, 1980

Release date
Nov 24, 1980 (United States)

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Cast

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27 cast members
Name STARmeter Known for
Robert Lansing
Horace Bixby Horace Bixby   See fewer
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David Knell
Sam Clemens Sam Clemens   See fewer
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James Keane
Mr. Ealer Mr. Ealer   See fewer
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Donald Madden
Mr. Brown Mr. Brown   See fewer
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John Pankow
George Richie George Richie   See fewer
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Bill Holliday
Mr. Thornburg Mr. Thornburg   See fewer
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Marcy Walker
Emmeline Emmeline   See fewer
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Don Brady
Mr. Leathers Mr. Leathers   See fewer
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Jack Lawrence
'Paul Jones' Captain 'Paul Jones' Captain   See fewer
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John Kirk
Mate on 'Paul Jones' Mate on 'Paul Jones'   See fewer
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Bill Atwood
Watchman on 'Paul Jones' Watchman on 'Paul Jones'   See fewer
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Thom Thomas
Clerk on 'Paul Jones' Clerk on 'Paul Jones'   See fewer
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Jim Babrowski
Preacher Preacher   See fewer
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Douglas Wells
Mr. Grogan Mr. Grogan   See fewer
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Barbara Chaney
Mrs. Thurlow Mrs. Thurlow   See fewer
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Collins Bell
Mr. Thurlow Mr. Thurlow   See fewer
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Lyla Owen
Mrs. Pelligrew Mrs. Pelligrew   See fewer
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Don Lutenbacher
Mr. Pelligrew Mr. Pelligrew   See fewer
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Members only
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Wayne Dickson
Mate on 'Aleck Scott' Mate on 'Aleck Scott'   See fewer
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Norma Schwied
Actress Actress   See fewer
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Members only
Stanley J. Reyes
Captain Kleinfelter (as Stanley Reyes) Captain Kleinfelter (as Stanley Reyes)   See fewer
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Robert E. Anderson
Kid in Tree (uncredited) Kid in Tree (uncredited)   See fewer
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Tim Gamble
Horse Trader (uncredited) Horse Trader (uncredited)   See fewer
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Ratings Breakdown

8.1 / 10 | 58 votes