The Western of Westerns! Directed by John Ford, the master of the genre, this epic saga is the film that made John Wayne (as the Ringo Kid) a star and earned Thomas Mitchell (as Doc) an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. When a rag-tag cross-section of folks travel across the vast landscape of Monument Valley towards Lordsburg, New Mexico, Native American leader Cochise leaves the reservation on the warpath. The film’s high point is a thrilling race across the desert flats as the tribesmen descend upon the stagecoach and its inhabitants, with stunning feats by by legendary American stuntman Yakima Canutt. Orson Welles supposedly studied this film before making his own landmark, CITIZEN KANE, and it’s obvious why. As the Ringo Kid says himself, “there are some things a man just can’t run away from.” This film is one of them.
-- Sean Griffin