|Location: Carseland, AB, Hwy 24 and Range Road 260 (NE of RR track)|
|GPS: 50d 51m 0s -113d 27m 51s|
|Map / Satellite Image: Google Link|
|Scene Name: Signal Gas Station|
Though it was subsequently cut, the Signal Gas Station scene was intended to establish the story’s place, and tell us important things about both Ennis and Joe Aguirre.
The scene establishes the location as the mountain country of Wyoming and tells us what Ennis is doing there. It emphasizes Ennis’s youth and vulnerability, and explains Joe Aguirre’s role. The image of the huge tire, which appears twice in the scene, is an example of the type of rich, sophisticated foreshadowing that makes the film deeply coherent and meaningful.
The Signal Gas Station, the old man, and the tractor tire are featured again in two separate places later in the script, in the brief scenes in which the Basque drives Jack and Ennis to, and from, the staging area. (These were also deleted.) David Trimble, who played the Basque, remembers that the most difficult part of shooting these scenes was driving the old truck, which had an archaic manual transmission.
What happened to the Signal Gas Station scene? The most compelling reason for omitting it is that it postpones some of the film’s most artful imagery. The captivating encounter between Jack and Ennis outside Joe Aguirre’s trailer is one of the film’s jewels and, as such, deserved prominent placement. Additionally, the film, like the story upon which it is based, is masterfully tight. By removing this scene, Lee gave Brokeback Mountain added directness and impact.
Pictures of surrounding area:
For more pictures taken near this location
DVD Chapter 1, 00 01 21; Chapter 2, 00 06 58, 00 08 17.
Revised 20 March 2009