The Grey Fox is a 1982 Canadian film written by John Hunter and directed by Phillip Borsos. It is based on the true story of Bill Miner, an American stagecoach robber who staged Canada's first train robbery on September 10, 1904. The film stars Richard Farnsworth as Miner. The cast also features Jackie Burroughs, Ken Pogue, Wayne Robson, Gary Reineke and Timothy Webber.
Stagecoach robber Bill Miner (Richard Farnsworth) is caught and sent to prison for 33 years. He is finally released in 1901. He wanders around, a man out of place in the new century, until he sees one of the first movies, The Great Train Robbery
, and is inspired to copy it in real life. After several unsuccessful attempts, he achieves his goal and hides out in a mining town in British Columbia
, becoming a respectable resident. There, he meets and falls in love with early feminist
and photographer Katherine Flynn (Jackie Burroughs). He considers settling down with her, but one last robbery proves to be his downfall.
The Grey Fox
has been designated and preserved as a "masterwork" by the Audio-Visual Preservation Trust of Canada
, a charitable non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the preservation of Canada’s audio-visual heritage.
At the 4th Genie Awards in 1983, The Grey Fox was nominated for thirteen awards and won seven:
- Best Picture
- Best Director (Borsos)
- Best Foreign Actor (Farnsworth)
- Best Supporting Actress (Burroughs)
- Best Original Screenplay (Hunter)
- Best Art Direction (Bill Brodie)
- Best Musical Score (Michael Conway Baker)
It has also been listed in the Toronto International Film Festival's TIFF List of Canada's Top Ten Films of All Time in 1984 and 1993.
praised the film as "a lovely adventure" and gave it 3 1/2 stars. Rotten Tomatoes
gave it a rare 100% fresh rating.