Review: Ethan Edwards is a Civil War veteran, he embarks on a journey to go and rescue his niece, Debbie, from an Indian tribe. Joining Ethan is Debbie’s brother Martin. They spend in total 5 years searching for her to bring her home.
Director: John Ford
Actors: John Wayne, Jeffrey Hunter, Vera Miles, Natalie Wood and Patrick Wayne
Genre: Action, Adventure, Classics, Drama and Western
A very fine performance from John Wayne. This is overall his best performance. One of the best westerns I have ever seen. It is based on a 1954 novel by Alan Le May. The cinematography is amazing in this and especially of the long shots which have been captured. The script was written by John Ford’s son-in-law Frank Nugent. The music was expertly composed by Max Steiner. The main themes in this is revenge and reconciliation. In most western films the themes that occur are man against nature, especially in a hostile environment, man against hostile natives, good versus evil against the background of unspoiled nature and also crimes and chases in a nineteenth century American setting. When director David Lean was preparing for Lawrence of Arabia he watched this film repeatedly to help give him a sense of how to shoot the landscape. You could say that this film made its way for films such as The Wild Bunch (1969), Taxi Driver (1976) and Star Wars (1977). According to the BBFC website in order to maintain a U Certificate one or more versions of this work were required to be cut but the details are not available. At the Golden Globe Awards in 1958 this won one award and that was for Most Promising Newcomer – Male (Patrick Wayne). Film Critic Barry Norman produced a list in the Radio Times at the start of 2012 of his 100 Greatest Films of all time and this film was in the list.