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Old 01-09-2014, 07:26 PM   #1
C. Lee
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Default The Films of John Wayne

I've been a john Wayne fan for 5 decades. At one time or another over this time I have managed to see just about everyone of his movies...some many many times. I currently have a pretty large DVD collection of his films. Starting on Jan 1st of this year, I started watching at least one movie a day...and many have been John Wayne films. Some I wrote about in the western thread...but he did more than just westerns...and then I thought, why just talk about his movies over there....he appeared in around 165 movies, starred or costarred in around 145. That can give someone plenty to talk about. So as I watch a bunch of his movies again, I will write a review and talk about them. But everyone is welcomed to join in. Since his last movie was 38 years ago....I don't think spoiler tags need to be used for these...but if people say they want them, then I'll do it.

So here we go....on Jan 1st I watched -

ANGEL AND THE BADMAN (1947) starring John Wayne, Gail Russell, Harry Carey, Bruce Cabot.

Quirt Evans (Wayne) is a man with a past....when his name is mentioned, people know it. He was once a deputy for Wyatt Earp in Tombstone, and now has a shady reputation as a gunslinger and possible outlaw. After a shootout and a hard ride, the wounded Quirt's horse can go on no longer and collapses in front of the house of a Quaker family. Insisting he needs to get to town to the telegraph office, the rancher (John Halloran) and his daughter (Gail Russell) take him there. After he dictates a message, staking claim to a piece of land, he passes out into Russell's arms. As she cradles him in her arms on the floor, you can tell that it is love at first sight for her.

They take him back to their ranch and nurse him back to health. They learn of his reputation, but their religious beliefs tell them to treat him as a friend and give him their trust. Russell makes no attempt to hide her attraction to him, he likes her looks and the family's kindness, but he's a saddle tramp on a mission to find the murderer (Bruce Cabot) of a friend of his. Federal marshal McClintock (Harry Carey) also shows up to let him know that he's keeping an eye on him.

Various events ensue - a neighboring rancher cuts off the water supply and Quirt goes over to "convince" him to undam the creek, the Quaker community happily accepts him into their midst (which confuses him), he runs off for a bit to town and after a night at the saloon with "loose" women and barfights he returns to the ranch for some home cooking and quiet time. Laredo Stevens (Cabot) who knows that Quirt is after him, catches him and Russell out for a buggy ride without his guns and attack. They survive, but Russell is in bad shape...so Quirt who had been leaning towards the quiet life straps on his guns and goes to town for revenge.

As he goes to town, a "miracle" happens and Russell awakens, her parents put her in a wagon and head into town to stop Quirt from killing. Quirt calls Cabot and his partner out....shaken by the news he is still alive, they have to take a little liquid courage to prepare to meet him. As Quirt waits outside the bar, Russell and her family show up. She convinces him there is no reason to kill the men because she is alright...he hands his pistol over to her. At that point Cabot and his partner come out and start the fight.....but they are both dropped from gunshots off camera. You then see federal marshal McClintock with a smoking rifle in his hands. He walks over and tells Quirt, he had planned for them to shoot it out and then hang the winner, but when he saw that Quirt had decided not to fight he had to step in. Quirt picks up the still weak Russel and puts her in his lap as he sits on the back of the wagon...as it drives off with them in it, Quirts says "Looks like I've become a farmer."

A pretty good movie, some nice visuals and action. Wayne is convincing as a "troubled" man looking for a different direction in his life.

This was the first movie that John Wayne produced.

Gail Russell would play his romantic lead again a year later in WAKE OF THE RED WITCH. She would unfortuantly die at the age of 36 due to alchoholism.

Harry Carey had been a star of early films in the silent era through the 30's. He was one of Wayne's idols, and he patterned many of his mannerisms after him. He would become a good friend with Carey's son (Harry Carey Jr) and would feature him in dozens of his later movies.

Bad guy Bruce Cabot also appeared in around a dozen of Wayne's movies.

There are characters named HONDO and McCLINTOCK in this movie...both were later titles of John Wayne movies.

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Old 01-09-2014, 07:27 PM   #2
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Default Re: The Films of John Wayne

On Jan 2nd I watched -


THE BIG TRAIL (1930) starring John Wayne, Marguerite Churchill, Tyrone Power Sr.

Directed by Raoul Walsh

Breck Coleman (John Wayne) a well known and respected frontiersman is hunting for the murderer of a friend. The trail leads to a wagon train of settlers starting out in Missouri and headed to Oregon. He joins the train as their scout. All the way across the country he is in a love/hate relationship with Ruth Cameron (Marguerite Churchill), playing cat and mouse with the men he suspects are the murderers (they are, and make several attempts on his life along the way), and deals with hazards of a trip like this; hostile Indians, severe weather, harsh landscapes.

This was the first starring role for Wayne...and those used to the older looking man from his later films will be surprised by the young boyish face and shy actions of the man.

The main bad guy is played by Tyrone Power Sr (the father of more famous actor Tyrone Power). This was his last movie (and only talkie)....and while his son was known as a handsome man, senior could not boast the same. Not knowing the exact history of the Popeye the sailor man cartoons, I could swear that they created Bluto after his appearance in this movie. He plays a large barrel chested bearded hairy armed rough sandpaper voiced man.

There are apparently multiple variations of this movie. It was shot in both 70mm wide screen and standard industry size. According to IMDB both versions still exist, but they differ in content....it was also simultaniously shot in German, French, and Spanish (different main actors, but using the same extras, sets, props...)

Except for a couple of scenes in a house at the beginning, it is all shot outdoors, sometimes in terrible weather. They are shown crossing deserts, mountains, and rivers. The rain scenes may have been from rain machines, but the blizzard scenes in the mountains looks as real as can be. There is also some nice shots of John and others under the giant redwood trees.

This is one of those that I definately recommend film fans to take a look at. It's an early talkie, so there are sound problems (and interesting to see some of the story explanation cards that silents were known for) but to see an epic early film shot in real life wild country (you know that there isn't a McDonalds just out of range of the camera) a 23 year old fresh faced John Wayne, and scenes that show native Americans not as evil bad guys, but some as friendly helpers and the others as defenders of their land being invaded by Europeans.


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Old 01-09-2014, 07:57 PM   #3
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Default Re: The Films of John Wayne

On Jan 3rd I watched -


THE DESERT TRAIL (1935) starring John Wayne, Paul Fix, Mary Kornman.

After 1930's THE BIG TRAIL (Wayne's first starring role) until 1939's STAGECOACH (the movie that changed his career and the way that westerns were made and seen by the public) Wayne starred in 56 cheap "B" and "C" grade movies. usually just around one hour long, they were short on plot but heavy on action.

The Desert Trail is a comedy/drama that can't be taken seriously. John Scott (Wayne) a rodeo rider and his friend Kansas Charlie (Eddy Chandler) a gambler travel the west getting into trouble. Besides playing loose with the cards during poker games, they are both talked up as doing well with the ladies (which is extremely more believable for a young Wayne than for the older, balding, overweight friend). They both start "wooing" the same Mexican girl Juanita (Carmen Laroux )...but you wonder what she would be doing with them, then you see her "playing" a third guy...and you get it a long time before these two guys do.

One things leads to another, and the pair are accused of a holdup and murder, so go looking for the real guys to clear their name. This leads to them going to another city, changing their names, and spending more time "wooing" the new girl they run into, Anne (Mary Kornman) who just coincidently is the sister of one of the guys they are looking for. Chases, shootouts, misunderstandings, ruses, and fights ensue until good triumphs over evil.

Not a must see by a long shot. Mainly to be watched by someone wanting to watch every Wayne movie or to get an idea what many old westerns from the 30's were like.


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Old 01-09-2014, 08:09 PM   #4
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On Jan 5th I watched


FORT APACHE (1948) starring John Wayne, Henry Fonda, Shirley Temple, Pedro Armendáriz, Ward Bond, John Agar, George O'Brien, and Victor McLaglen.

Directed by John Ford

Many people when they comment on Henry Fonda playing a bad guy, they referance ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST (and yes, he played an evil bastard in that)...in this he is the bad guy also....but it's because he is a self centered stuckup bigoted dick. As another reviewer said, he isn't evil, he's just a stupid bastard that gets many people killed because of his arrogance.

Lt. Col. Owen Thursday (Fonda) and his daughter Philadelphia (19 year old Shirley Temple) are going to Fort Apache Arizona where he is to now assume command. We learn immediately that he is a stuck up prissy idiot with his incessant complaining about the west, the locals, the heat, the dust, the "ignorant savages", and so on. Through the whole movie he never shies away from expressing his disdain for everything and everyone out west. Before they make it to the Fort, they stop at a way station where they encounter new West Point grad 2nd Lt. Michael Shannon O'Rourke (John Agar.....many may know Agar from his many "B" sci fi movies, of note is the fact that he had married Temple a couple of years before this movie, and the notoriety from that led to this, his first acting role)....Philadelphia is instantly smitten (which stick up his butt Fonda is oblivious to) and Col Thursday is thoroughly disgusted that a troop of soldiers had arrived at the station to escort O'Rourke to the fort and not him.

When he arrives at the Fort, he misses no time in letting everyone know how much he hates the idea he is there, how much he hates how they are doing things, and how much he hates various troopers he encounters because they aren't as snappily dressed and stiff as he is. Basicly....he proves he is a dick. When he meets his assistant Sgt. Maj. Michael O'Rourke (Ward Bond) he asks if he is any relation to the 2nd Lt. O'Rourke he met on the way there....Bond tells him he is his son. Thursday acts astonished and rudely asks how a lowly sgt could get a son into West point. Turns out the father was awarded the medal of honor during the civil war, and one of the benefits of that is one of your kids gets an all expenses paid scholorship to West point. When Lt. Col. Thursday's daughter lets him know she is interested in the young O'Rourke, he forbids she have anything to do with him because he comes from a lower "class" of people than they do.

Others at the Fort are Capt. Kirby York (John Wayne...loved by all the fort, a decent wise intelligent officer), Capt. Sam Collingwood (George O'Brien....who we find is a decent fellow, but has a past with Thursday that the Lt. Col holds a grudge against him for) and for comedic relief Sgt. Festus Mulcahy (Victor McLaglen). Trouble starts brewing with the local Apaches. It's shown that they are leaving the reservation and raiding because of corrupt Indian Agents cheating, starving, and violating their women. Thursday of course will not listen to any of his officers who have actually fought the Apache's out west and countermands anything they recommend. Capt. Kirby says he thinks he can bring Cochise and his men in peacefully (he has known him for years, and they trust each other)...he thinks that if they can guarantee changes at the reservation, thinks will settle down. Thursday send him out to do this....and Kirby does meet with Cochise and makes an agreement for them to meet at a certain spot with Thursday and government officials to talk it out.

When they go there, Thursday of course just takes this as a chance to attack and defeat Cochise. Kirby protests because he gave his word to talk, Thursday accuses him of cowardice and tells him to take the supply train to a ridge and watch the encounter "from safety". Thursday then leads most of his company into a canyon charging the few Apache's that had come out and shot at them....as they ride into the canyon, the several hundred Apache's in the rocks open fire and decimate the troopers.

This a classic movie. Ford does a fantastic job filming in Monument Valley, there are good performances throughout...several great action scenes and a fine story about the folly of conceit.

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Old 01-09-2014, 08:12 PM   #5
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Thabnks for the reviews, C. Lee. My father (RIP) loved John Wayne and I never could get into westerns as a child. Except for "El Dorado" that I watched on TV when I was 11. That, and another one where John Wayne was a pilot. I grew up falling in love with cinema, so if I can start watching some of Mr. Wayne's movies, I'll know which ones reading this thread.

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Old 01-09-2014, 08:25 PM   #6
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Love The Searchers.

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Old 01-09-2014, 09:32 PM   #7
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On Jan 6th I watched -


THE GREEN BERETS (1968) starring John Wayne, David Janssen, Jim Hutton, Aldo Ray, Raymond St. Jacques, George Takei, Bruce Cabot, Jack Soo.

Directed by John Wayne and Ray Kellogg.


Because of the scathing reviews by the liberal media professional reviewers...many people think this film was a box office bomb. In reality it was one of his biggest hits. As many people said at the time...to make a pro war film centered in Vietnam at this time in America...you had to either be crazy or have cajones the size of basketballs. It may have been a combination of these that took place.

The opening credits are freeze frames of scenes throughout the movie with the hit song THE BALLAD OF THE GREEN BERETS by ex real life Green Beret Barry Sadler playing over them. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=9E4O3DjpIrU The main thing to remember when watching this...the Vietnam war was dividing the country...Hollywood was doing its best to ignore it in movies and TV (while most of the country including actors, directors, and writers were protesting it)....and then America's hero John Wayne made an epic pro war action film.

At Fort Benning, Georgia....Col. Mike Kirby (Wayne) is given orders to go to Vietnam and take command of an area. He talks the generals above him into giving him 3 weeks to roam around checking things out before he gets stuck behind a desk. You are introduced to several of his right hand men....the old soldier for life Sgt. Muldoon (Aldo Ray), the compassionate medic Sgt. Doc McGee (St. Jacques) and the new to his command happy go lucky scrounger Sgt. Petersen (Hutton). At a press event just before he goes over, an anti war newspaper man George Beckworth (Janssen) shows not only his opposition to the war, but his disdain for the soldiers fighting it. Kirby tells him to go to Vietnam and see things first hand before he makes such comments....and he does go over.

Once in Nam...there are two main story lines.....(1) the defense of a forward fire base, short on men and supplies, and preparing for large NVM assault they know is coming and (2) the planned excursion behind enemy lines to kidnap a North Vietnamese general.

At the forward base we meet Capt. Nim (George Takei....when the making of this movie ran over time, he missed out on 9 episodes of STAR TREK and newly beamed aboard Chekov got his part rewritten for him) the South Vietnamese officer in charge of the SV contingent, base commander and short timer Capt. Coleman (Jason Evers), Sgt. Provo (Luke Askew) who is overly concerned with finding the right place to be named after him if he dies, and orphan Hamchunk (Craig Jue) who latches onto Peterson as soon as he arrives.

In and around the base, we meet various soldiers and locals. We are shown the viciousness of the NV soldiers (the atrocities they are shown to commit were new to people in the 60's but something that we hear almost everyday on the news now being committed by terrorists around the world). There is a build up of skirmishes for a few days until a major night time assault involving hundreds from both sides.

Next, Kirby is contacted by Col. Cai (Jack Soo) about needing his Green Berets to make a raid behind the lines to kidnap North Vietnamese Gen. Phan Son Ti. We see Kirby and a small group of special forces go in, grab the general, and then fight their way out. Several of the soldiers you have become fond of are killed or wounded on the mission. *** a side note.....many people love the scene in TDK where Batman kidnaps Chin Han from Hong Kong by tieing him to a balloon and having a large plane fly by and yank him up into the air.....well watch it done here 40 years earlier***


Whether you like the politics of the movie or not....it's a good action movie.


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Old 01-10-2014, 12:09 AM   #8
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Default Re: The Films of John Wayne

Not a big fan of "The Duke," however I have liked a few movies that he was in in spite of him - the comedies: North to Alaska and Donovan's Reef. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance was pretty good also but I consider that a Jimmy Stewart film.

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Old 01-10-2014, 01:38 AM   #9
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Default Re: The Films of John Wayne

Been a fan of "The Duke" for some 35 years.

I live about 75 minutes from his Birthplace in Winterset, Iowa.
Been there a couple times.
Wish I could have gone last May, Maureen O'Hara was there to celebrate his birthday and talk about their movies.

My 5 Favorite JW movies are:

1) Rio Bravo
2) The Searchers
3) Island in the Sky
4) Hondo
5) She Wore a Yellow Ribbon

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Old 01-10-2014, 05:08 PM   #10
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Default Re: The Films of John Wayne

Quote:
Originally Posted by Senator Pleasury View Post
Thabnks for the reviews, C. Lee. My father (RIP) loved John Wayne and I never could get into westerns as a child. Except for "El Dorado" that I watched on TV when I was 11. That, and another one where John Wayne was a pilot. I grew up falling in love with cinema, so if I can start watching some of Mr. Wayne's movies, I'll know which ones reading this thread.
Glad you like the reviews...I'm no expert at it, hope they are at least a little informative. El Dorado is a fun movie...Wayne made around 4 or 5 movies where he was a pilot (have a review of one of them coming up soon)...stay tuned.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Samuel Jackson View Post
Love The Searchers.
Another excellent movie.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gort Baringa View Post
Not a big fan of "The Duke," however I have liked a few movies that he was in in spite of him - the comedies: North to Alaska and Donovan's Reef. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance was pretty good also but I consider that a Jimmy Stewart film.
I always feel that if people watch his movies with their preconceived ideas about him set aside...they will enjoy them more than they expected.

Quote:
Originally Posted by signalman View Post
Been a fan of "The Duke" for some 35 years.

I live about 75 minutes from his Birthplace in Winterset, Iowa.
Been there a couple times.
Wish I could have gone last May, Maureen O'Hara was there to celebrate his birthday and talk about their movies.

My 5 Favorite JW movies are:

1) Rio Bravo
2) The Searchers
3) Island in the Sky
4) Hondo
5) She Wore a Yellow Ribbon
Is it set up as a museum?

Missing O'Hara is a bummer.....I would love to meet her.

Those are good choices.


For those that don't know, I am an avid movie fan of all genres. Pretty much every year I make some kind of New Year's resolution about watching movies. This year I made one to watch movies in alphabetical order. I originally planned on doing that throughout the year....but it is more of a hendarance than a good thing. It's not that I can't find enough movies in that order, but it's rather that, lets say I am to watch a movie that starts with a D...and a movie comes on I want to watch with a M....it put me in a quandry. At this point I decided to finish out the alphabet at least one time in order...but after that, I'll watch what I want. I had already set aside 26 movies to watch (and there were a bunch of John Wayne's in them) but after I get the full alphabet done, I will concentrate on watching Wayne movies and reviewing them for awhile.

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Old 01-10-2014, 05:13 PM   #11
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Default Re: The Films of John Wayne

Not a huge fan of his (more of a John Ford fan, really) but I've always like The Cowboys, Stagecoach, the Quiet Man and the Man Who Shot Liberty Valance.

I also remember seeing The Sands of Iwo Jima years ago, but I don't remember if I liked it.

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Old 01-10-2014, 06:21 PM   #12
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On Jan 7th I watched -

IN HARMS WAY (1965) starring John Wayne, kirk Douglas, Patricia Neal, Tom Tryon, Paula Prentiss, Henry Fonda.

Directed by Otto Preminger

This film is a grand soap opera/war movie.

The movie starts on December 6th, 1941...the day before the attack on Pearl Harbor. At a US Navy dance...young beautiful Liz Eddington (Barbara Bouchet) is dancing wildly with a Naval flier (Hugh O'Brian) as others look on disapprovingly. They are causing a stir partly because they are drunk and not acting like the officer decorum demands....but also because the man Liz is wiggling on isn't her husband, Commander Paul Eddington (Kirk Douglas) who is on his ship out on maneuvers with Captain Rockwell 'Rock' Torrey (John Wayne). The pair leave the dance and go to the beach where she strips and runs into the ocean with O'Brian stripping his clothes off behind her.....fad to black.

The morning starts with Captain Torrey preparing for commanding his ship on maneuvers....and Liz and O'Brian waking up on the beach under a blanket. Out at sea....Torrey sees a flight of planes that is where it shouldn't be and orders people to check on it as he puts his ship on red alert. On the beach, O'Brian notices a flight of approaching planes...he recognizes them as Japanese, so he drags Liz to the car and tries to get to safety as a plane strafes them....avoiding the planes, they die in a flaming crash. The attack on Pearl begins. Lieutenant William 'Mac' McConnel (Tom Tryon) takes his ship out to sea from the harbor without his captain on board (the captain is right behind him on a small launch trying to get aboard..McConnel tells his men it will take too long to stop and get him...full steam ahead). At sea, Torrey leads the several ships on maneuvers with him on a search and destroy mission looking for the Japanese carriers....but is torpedoed by a sub. Many are killed or wounded, Torrey gets a broken arm. The attack continues.

After the attack, there was a lot of scapegoating going on in the Navy...Torrey has his command taken from him and put on plotting routes for supply ships. Eddington finds out about his wife's death with the other officer....and after leaving the morgue goes to a bar and gets into a fight with a naval flier (stuntman Hal Needham)....this gets him busted and transferred to a small remote island base. Three months later Torrey meets nurse Lieutenant Maggie Haynes (Patricia Neal) when he gets the cast removed from his arm. She tells him he doesn't look or act like his son, a young Naval officer dating her room mate....when he acts surprised to hear this, she asks if he had known his son was in Hawaii...he tells her he didn't even know his son was in the Navy...they hadn't spoken in 20 years. Torrey and Maggie start seeing each other (it's nice to see Wayne partnered with some one close to his age...Wayne did that in his movies, refusing to have his love interests being the young new starlet of the moment) and we start seeing the love story between his son Ensign Jeremiah 'Jere' Torrey (Brandon De Wilde) and Ensign Annalee Dorne (Jill Haworth).

Torrey is housed with a military intelligence officer Commander Egan Powell (Burgess Meredith)...and when Torrey lays out a plan of attack through the islands towards Japan....Powell gives him a dirty look and storms out. Later Torrey is called to a dinner with Admiral Nimitz (Henry Fonda....Nimitz is the commander in chief of the pacific fleet)...there he is given a promotion to rear admiral, and told that his plan of attack is what everyone else had been working on for months. They want Torrey to lead the offensive even though Admiral 'Blackjack' Broderick (Dana Andrews) is already in charge of things in the area. This leads to political backstabbing and underhanded maneuvers with some officers caring more for their rep than the war.

This is about the halfway point of the movie...it continues the same. Some war, some soap opera, some war, some soap opera......

It's a decent movie to watch....it's a pretty good choice to watch with your wife or girlfriend....war for the guys, love stories for the women (yes, I guess I'm being sexist saying that...but my wife said the same thing). I don't want to give too much away...but some real unexpected things happen from here on out. It is war, so people die or get maimed. If you are a fan of naval battles, this has some good ones. Destroyer against destroyer, PT boats, etc....

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Old 01-11-2014, 01:50 AM   #13
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Glad you like the reviews...I'm no expert at it, hope they are at least a little informative. El Dorado is a fun movie...Wayne made around 4 or 5 movies where he was a pilot (have a review of one of them coming up soon)...stay tuned.

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Old 01-11-2014, 02:53 PM   #14
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On Jan 8th I watched -

JET PILOT (1957) starring John Wayne, Janet Leigh, Paul Fix, Jay C. Flippen, Hans Conried.

Produced by Howard Hughes

This a "cold war" drama that today comes across as more as an unfunny saturday night live skit. Col. Jim Shannon (John Wayne) is a jet pilot (notice how I worked the film's title in there) at an arctic base. They get a radar hit of an aircraft coming over from soviet air space. He sends up his buddy Maj. Rexford (Paul Fix) to check it out. It is a Russian plane, and he directs it to land at their base, and it complies. When it lands, they discover it is a woman pilot, Lt. Anna Marladovna Shannon (Janet Leigh....in many glorious color soft focus closeups and hair swishing), and that she is defecting not for political reasons but because she believes she was targeted for murder by a superior officer. Col. Shannon and Major Rexford exchange witty banter with and about her, allow her to take a shower in the Colonels office, and then exchange witty innuendo about the situation. She is then taken to Washington DC....where she is given a Russian uniform to wear (we have to remind everyone she is a dirty RED....even though she is still beautifully and gloriously in soft focus closeups)...when the generals and CIA experts in charge realize they are getting no info from her, they decide to send her back to Wayne, because his being the ideal American prototype of the day...there is no way for her to resist him, so she will most likely give up her....information....to him.

Back in Alaska....Wayne and Leigh continue their witty repartee and innuendos....and Wayne lets her take up an American jet on her own (as in she's alone in it, he's in another jet)....to see how good of a jet pilot (see what I did there) she is. **Now....not being an Air Force official of that time....I can't say if it was standard procedure to just let any supposedly defecting Russian pilot to fly off so easily from an American base with one of our brand new jets, so close to the Soviet border thus making it extremely easy for them to possible steal said aircraft and become a hero to mother Russia.....or if it was only allowed for the beautiful blonde female ones who are being so gloriously photographed to do it. In either case I personally don't deem it a wise thing to do** They fly around, with Wayne doing some cool manuevers (in reality American flying ace and hero Chuck Yeager did them) and she asking a bunch of questions about our jets (nothing suspicious going on here)....

Still getting nowhere information wise (but doing pretty good on getting hair flips, eyes batting, and demure smiles) Wayne decides to up the pressure...he takes her down to Palm Springs, gives her steak, and buys her a bunch of beautiful dresses (this has got to break the Geneva Convention rules on treatment of prisoners/defectors somehow)....and they continue the witty repartee (wink wink nudge nudge). The CIA (being just a little professional) intercept a coded phone call from her to a "RED" agent and now discover that she is in reality top of the line KGB agent Olga Orlief....and intend to send her right back to Russia (because we would much rather send a spy back with the info they have collected form the "she's so purty she cahnt be bad" horny guys up in Alaska than to try and get any info from her about Russian plans or at least trading her for one of our captured spies...) nah, lets send he back ASAP. On hearing about her true identity....U.S. Air Force Colonel Shannon (Wayne) does the only thing any patriotic high ranking military man would do....he flies her to Reno for a quickie wedding....cause he just knows she loves him as much as he loves her.

Now....the U.S. military doesn't throw either of them in the brig. They don't immediately post guards on them. They don't even take away their keys to the supersonic jets.....so you can see where this may lead....yep....they skidaddle right over to mother Russia where they are greeted with open arms (and KGB guards...them pesky reds). The Roosskies are happy to ask Wayne all kinds of questions about our jets and see if he will help them with some problems they have with their jets....because he is after all....an expert JET PILOT. Wayne acts annoyed that they spend all their time talking about jets and not letting him have a glorious honeymoon in Siberia with his KGB spy wife....and she starts getting info on the real plans the KGB have for him if he doesn't cooperate fully. So....while he is flying a Russian experimental jet on his own to test it out for them (at least we know the Reds were as stupid as we were)...she steals another jet (it's amazing any of the world powers survived as long as they did with all of the jet snatching taking place) and flies out to get him to defect back to America. It's a good thing no one else in Russia can speak English...because they openly talk on the radio about what they plan to do....and they make their escape back to the good old U....S....of....A!!!!!!!!! We then find that Wayne just faked his defection to get info from the Russians (by them asking for help with certain jet problems they had, he knew what they were deficient in...and that makes us more prepared to fight them Rooskie commies)....and he and his ex Russian spy now wife are last seen eating a giant honking 'murican steak back in Palm Springs.


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Old 01-11-2014, 03:39 PM   #15
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I forgot THE QUIET MAN, this one I liked also and J.W. was very good in it!




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Old 01-11-2014, 05:14 PM   #16
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I too saw The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance. Great movie. And funny how The Lone Ranger pretty much stole the premise from that film.

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Old 01-11-2014, 10:22 PM   #17
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for pure western fun, my top four that I enjoy are...

Rio Bravo
El Dorado
The Sons of Katie Elder
The War Wagon

I also enjoy The Wings of Eagles and his final film, The Shootist, but it's so sad as that movie mirrored his battle with cancer in real life...

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Old 01-11-2014, 10:36 PM   #18
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After studying some of Wayne's films in a college film studies course, I have become a huge fan of his work. I have most, if not all of the films he did with Ford, and most of his war-related pictures.

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Old 01-13-2014, 12:54 AM   #19
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Default Re: The Films of John Wayne



This post is more of a place holder or thread subscriber until I get time tomorrow to write a proper post. John Wayne's cowboy films are amongst my Dad's favourites and I grew up watching a lot of them with him and becoming a big fan myself.

The first Christmas present I can remember buying him is a video of Rio Bravo!


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Old 01-13-2014, 12:39 PM   #20
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On Jan 12th I watched -

NORTH TO ALASKA (1960) starring John Wayne, Stewart Granger, Capucine, Ernie Kovacs, Fabian, Mickey Shaughnessy, Karl Swenson, and Kathleen Freeman.

Many people don't think about John Wayne when they think comedy...but they should, and this movie is a great example of it. It's 1900 goldrush Alaska....Sam McCord (Wayne) and his partners George Pratt (Granger) and his younger brother Billy Pratt (Fabian....he was a teen idol singer at the time) strike it rich. While Sam goes down to Seattle to buy bigger better mining equipment, the brothers stay behind to keep a watch on the mine because of all of the claim jumping going on. George also wants Sam to bring his French fiancee Jenny (who he can't stop talking about and is madly in love with) back up to Alaska. Sam thinks he's nuts...because women are fine to have fun with on a Saturday night, but having one around all the time is not for him. Before he can leave for Seattle we are also introduced to con man/thief Frankie Canon (Kovacs) as he tries to steal Sam's money.

In Seattle....Sam buys a bunch of clothes and "doo dads" for George's fiancee and takes them to her to give her the good news....unfortuantely George had been panning for gold for 3 years, and she is now married to someone else. Knowing this will break George's heart to end, Sam goes to the best brothel in town to console him from afar. There he runs into the French beauty Angel (Capucine)...and gets the great idea to bring her back to George instead. He talks her into doing it (she mistakenly thinks he wants her for himself) and after a day watching him pal around with a bunch of logger friends at a lumberjack howdown being all manly and studly, she really starts falling for him and they head north to Alaska. Once there, she finds out she is meant for George, and being upset, at first decides to back out of the deal. Sam puts her up at a local hotel, that we now find has been stolen from the original proprieter by crook Frankie Canon...and that he knows her from the past. Not liking how Frankie talks about stealing from the miners, and wanting to be with Sam more...she fakes that someone is messing with her in the hotel which gets Sam to come a running and protectively take her with him up to his mine site.

Once there, they find that George is over at another miner's site helping him fight off claim jumpers Sam heads over there to help them, leaving Angel with young Billy....young horney never touched a women but wants to oh so badly Billy. So we now have a bunch of guys fighting claim jumpers and Angel fighting an Angel jumper. After they fight off the bad guys, Sam tells George about Jenny being married...and he does not take it well. Sam goes back to their mine to take Angel back to town, but George shows up and kind of likes the idea of taking Angel instead...which upsets Sam. George takes Angel to the "honeymoon" cabin he built across the river from the main camp...and quickly realizes that she is in love with Sam....and after he questions her about how lewd and rude Sam had acted to her, she tells him that he had been a perfect sweet gentleman...he realizes that Sam is in love with her (but knows he will never admit it). So he hatches a plan to make him jealous, which works, but a Jealous Sam is a angry Sam and an angry Sam punches George and says he's out of the partnership. That's when the Army shows up saying that someone else has staked a claim on this mine and that no one can do anything there or use any of the gold mined from it until there is court meeting about it. This leads everyone back to town for a big fistfight through the muddy streets destroying several buildings and righting all wrongs.

You have to remember this is a comedy. There are a couple of large scale fistfights in the movie, both played for laughs. The one semi serious fight (defending the mine from claim jumpers) is 95% comical in execution. Seeing the antics of Wayne getting madder and madder as his jealousy grows or his dealing with young Fabian about all of his naivety with the world are hilarious. This a fun and action filled movie for most everyone in the family.

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Old 01-13-2014, 05:15 PM   #21
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I'm a huge Wayne fan, but I don't think I've ever laughed at something so hard in a movie.

VIDEO-CLick to Watch!:

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Old 01-17-2014, 02:34 AM   #22
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http://johnwaynebirthplace.museum/


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Old 01-17-2014, 11:06 AM   #23
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On Jan 10th I watched -

LAWLESS RANGE (1935) starring John Wayne, Yakima Canutt, Sheila Bromley.

This is another of his multiple quickie "B" westerns made in the 30's. A friend of Wayne's father writes and asks for help. When Waynes arrives, the rancher is missing, but his beautiful niece is there (so things aren't all bad)....as Wayne checks into things he also gets to sing (in an obviously dubbed voice) a couple of songs. Turns out local banker is using an outlaw gang to run people off their land because he knows gold has been discovered in the valley.

On Jan 14th I watched -

PARADISE CANYON (1935) Starring John Wayne, Yakima Canutt, Marion Burns.

Wayne is some kind of Federal lawman (it never really says what department) who is sent to the Arizona/Mexico border to check into counterfeit money showing up. The main suspect is a crazy old medicine show man Doc Carter (Earle Hodgins) who was jailed 10 years previously for counterfeiting and his beautiful daughter Linda (Marion Burns). Wayne gets attached to their show as a fancy shooter while investigating things back and forth across the Mexican border. Turns out Doc Carter was framed years ago by his crooked partner Curly Joe Gale (Yakima Canutt) who has started up business again, and Doc wants to catch him. Shootouts, horse chases, fistfights ensue. It's also nice to see U.S.Federal man Wayne working with the Mexican Federalies to catch the bad guys.

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Old 01-17-2014, 12:15 PM   #24
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On Jan 15th I watched -

THE QUIET MAN (1952) Starring John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Barry Fitzgerald, Ward Bond, Victor McLaglen.

Directed by John Ford

This is a classic movie. A beautifully photographed, funny, touching, homage to a simpler time. Not only was this set in Ireland, but it was filmed there too. This may sound strange, but in the old days, almost all American made productions were filmed in America no matter where they were set.

Set in the 1920's, Sean Thornton (Wayne) comes home to the village of Inisfree (he and his mother had moved to America when he was but a wee lad) he's back now in search of a quiet life. You are introduced to the friendly eccentric folk of the village and Sean is immediately smitten by the beauty of passing lass Mary Kate Danaher (O'Hara) who is the unwed sister to local bully and blowhard Squire 'Red' Will Danaher (McLaglen). Sean and Red start bucking heads when Sean wants to buy his birth home from The Widow Sarah Tillane (Mildred Natwick)....the same land that Red wants...he also wants to wed the widow, but his brashness has always turned her away, and went he tells her NOT to sell the land to Sean, she immediately does so. Sean wants to court Mary Kate, and following the Irish way he hires the local matchmaker to set up a meeting with him and her brother so that he can begin seeing her. Red of course will have nothing to do with it, and Mary Kate being a proper sister will not go against her brother's wishes.

Several villagers (including the Catholic and Protestant priests) hatch a plan to convince Red that Sean is now wooing the Widow...and when Red is incensed by this, they tell him it is his own fault. They convince him that the only reason the Widow hadn't accepted Red's advances before was because Mary Kate was still living in his house...."No woman would want to come into another woman's house...especially if she is a redhead."...and...."You had your chance to marry Kate off...and you blew it."....This leads him to OK the courtship, and Sean and Mary Kate start their dating....with little old matchmaker Michaleen Oge Flynn (Livingston) doing his best to keep them separated the whole time - "There'' be no patty fingers between ya." They eventually wed....but things turn sour on the wedding night when Red immediately alludes to his belief that with her now married off, the Widow will now be his. This of course infuriates her and she lets him know it, and with the "deal" now being off he refuses to turn over his sister's "dowry" to Sean. Sean doesn't care, he proudly states he didn't marry her for any money...but Mary Kate is livid....the passing on off a dowry of money and furniture is an age old Irish tradition, and she will have her things. Sean refuses to fight for her stuff...and she is now ashamed that he may be a coward (this is not the first time that Sean has refused to fight her brother).

A short time passes with Sean and Mary Kate living under the same roof but not sharing a bed (which leads to a couple of hilarious sight gags) she has a talk with Catholic Father Peter Lonergan (Ward Bond) while he's engaged in his favorite past time of fly fishing...and then Sean goes to talk to Protestant Reverend Cyril Playfair (Arthur Shields). While Father Lonergan chews her out for not being a proper wife, Reverend Playfair figures out the mystery of Sean's reluctance to fight. Sean had been a heavyweight professional boxer in the States....and after killing a man in the ring, he swore to never fight again. The reverend convinces him that Mary Kate is worth fighting for...so he decides to do it. Going home to tell Mary Kate of this, he finds that she has left him because of her shame...and is now at the train station 5 miles away (luckily, it has amusingly been said a few times already that the train is not only never on time...but being just 3 hours late is a good day for them).

Sean shows up at the station, drags Mary Kate off the train....and proceeds to drag her (yes, drag her...running beside him or along on the ground) through the fields all the way to her brother's farm. They make it there (with 20 or 30 villagers following and giving him words of encouragement the whole way) and there Sean demands the dowry be given to Mary Kate. Red refuses...and Sean then throws her over to him saying "Then have her back. No dowry, no marriage...not my rule, but yours." At this Red pulls out the money and throws it on the ground...Sean and Mary Kate pick it up at the same time, and staring each other in the eye walk it over to a fire and throw it in. Mary Kate then smiles, and looking around at the onlookers proudly says...."Husband. I will have supper ready for you went you get home." and she saunters off. Sean and Red roll up their sleeves....and for the next 8 minutes fistfight across the farm and into town....stopping for the occasional beer or bucketful of water thrown in their faces to refresh them.

Yep...this movie is not a current era PC film. But it is hilariously funny at times, sweet at others, and an ode to other times and cultures.

John Ford made a handshake contract with Wayne, O'Hara, and several other of the principal players in 1944 to do the movie....but was unable to getting backing for making it until 1951. The head of REPUBLIC PICTURES finally agreed to back it if Ford, Wayne, and O'Hara did another movie for him first...so they made RIO GRANDE.

REPUBLIC PICTURES was not a prestige company. They made cheap B movies....of the hundreds of films they produced, only one ever was nominated or won an OSCAR....it was The Quiet Man.

Two of Maureen O'Hara's brothers have roles in the movie. James O'Hara plays the young Father Paul and Charles B. Fitzsimons plays one of the two IRA members (Fitzsimons was also a barrister in real life, and he took care of all of the legal paperwork and contracts while they filmed in Ireland).

Academy award winning Barry Fitzgerald (Michaleen Oge Flynn) real life brother Arthur Shields played Reverend Cyril Playfair.

One of the eccentric townspeople was played by Francis Ford....John Ford's older brother (Francis had been a big star in the silent era, and got John started in the business).

The DVD in current release has commentary by Maureen O'Hara (the other night when I watched this for this review, I first watched it without, then with the commentary)....it was recorded in 2002. In it, she refutes several things that have been wrote about the movie over the years. She also recounts how some reviewer at the time says she didn't do a proper Irish accent...even though she was born and raised in Dublin.

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Old 01-17-2014, 12:37 PM   #25
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Brilliant thread, C. Lee.

Despite being stuck with the birth name Marion, John Wayne was the quintessential man's man. I think only Russell Crowe, Harrison Ford and Clint Eastwood (in terms of actors working today - or part time in Eastwood's case) come close to the masculine ideal embodied by Wayne. I think he was - and still is - criminally underrated as an actor when properly utilized. As John Ford biographer Joseph McBride observed, '[He] was to Ford what David was to Michelangelo.'

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