Henry Hathaway‘s North to Alaska, a 1960 western comedy with John Wayne, Stuart Granger, Fabian, Ernie Kovacs and Capucine, ends with a three-minute and 40-second brawl in the muddy streets of Nome.
An outdoorsy action helmer who began in the ’20s, Hathaway wasn’t drawing upon a slapstick comedy background like, say, George Stevens might have, but this fistfight sequence is as carefully choreographed as Victor McLaglan, Cary Grant and Douglas Fairbanks‘ fight against the thugs in the first act of Gunga Din (’39). Ramming goats, a barking seal, a Salvation Army band…very broad and silly.
There are two accidental bits with Wayne — his hat is knocked off while he’s not wearing his toupee (:10), and then he slides backward through mud and lands under a mule, who starts kicking.
The best bit comes at 2:37 when Kovacs lands face-first into a puddle of liquid mud and then a barrel (apparently pulled along with an invisible fishing line) rolls over him.
Kovacs during liquid-mud pratfall.