The first of Ford's cavalry trilogy (to be followed by She Wore a Yellow Ribbon and Rio Grande), and an intriguing development of questions of leadership, responsibility, heroism and legend, first raised in the muted officers' conflict of They Were Expendable. West Point stiffness (the Custer-like Fonda) meets the more organic Western community of an isolated Arizona outpost, and inflexible notions of 'duty' lead inexorably to disaster, historically rewritten as glory. Not for the last time, Ford gives us telling evidence of tragic ambiguity, but none the less decides to 'print the legend'.
Cast and crew
|Screenwriter:||Frank S Nugent|