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Stagecoach

Impossible to overstate the influence of Ford's magnificent film, generally considered to be the first modern Western. Shot in the Monument Valley which Ford was later to make his own, it also initiated Wayne's extraordinarily fertile partnership with the director, and established in embryo much of the mythology explored and developed in Ford's subsequent Westerns. Wayne plays the Ringo Kid, an outlaw seeking revenge for the murder of his father and brother, first seen 'holding up' the stagecoach containing banished prostitute Trevor, dipso doctor Mitchell, cynical gambler Carradine, timid salesman Meek, and a pair of ostensibly respectable characters: pregnant 'lady' Platt, and crooked banker Churchill. The contrast between the innocence of the wilderness and the ambiguous 'blessings of civilisation' are brilliantly stitched into a smoothly developed narrative, which climaxes with the famous Indian attack on the stagecoach.

Release details

Duration: 96 mins

Cast and crew

Director: John Ford
Screenwriter: Dudley Nichols
Cast: Berton Churchill
John Wayne
Donald Meek
Andy Devine
Louise Platt
Claire Trevor
Thomas Mitchell
John Carradine
Tim Holt
George Bancroft
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