Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Happy 114th, John Wayne!

John Wayne has been my favorite actor since my early teens.  I had the great joy of actually visiting his birthplace in Winterset, Iowa, when I was like fifteen.  I'd love to go back one day.  It's always been a source of great satisfaction to me that I was born in the same state he was.  Nowadays, I'm also really pleased that we probably shared the same Meyers-Briggs personality type too: ISFJ.  

I've reviewed a few of John Wayne's movies here over the years, so today I've collected those up here for you to peruse if you haven't had the chance to read them yet:

Stagecoach (1939)


Angel and the Badman (1947)


Operation Pacific (1951)


The Quiet Man (1952)


The High and the Mighty (1954)


The Searchers (1956)


Rio Bravo (1959)


I hope you've enjoyed this little stroll down blogging-memory lane :-)  I'm hoping/planning to watch Rio Bravo with my kids on Friday for our new little summertime tradition of Friday Movie Lunches.  They haven't seen it before, and since it's one of my absolute favorites, I'm really looking forward to sharing it with them!

What's your favorite John Wayne movie?  Mine's actually The Sons of Katie Elder (1965), which I've never properly reviewed here, so maybe I'll get around to that later this summer, especially if I decide to show it to my kids in a few weeks!

15 comments:

  1. My favorite JOHN WAYNE movie is also THE SONS OF KATIE ELDER. I also really like THE SEARCHERS where he played ETHAN EDWARDS. JEFFREY HUNTER was really good in that movie too. He held his own alongside DUKE. Did you know Jeffrey was once married to BARBARA RUSH? I first knew her from the short-lived prime-time soap FLAMINGO ROAD. It also starred STELLA STEVENS, MORGAN FAIRCHILD and MARK HARMON.

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    1. Classic TV Fan, high five to another Katie Elder fan!!!

      I didn't know who Hunter was once married to -- I mostly just know him from The Searchers, the pilot episode of Star Trek, and one ep of Combat!. I really like how well he holds his own against Wayne in The Searchers.

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  2. JAMES ARNESS would have been 98 on May 26. He was born the day DUKE turned 16! Being GUNSMOKE was a big western and Arness played MATT DILLON for 20 years(!) to me he is the "TV JOHN WAYNE". I know there was only one Duke-there was nobody like him-but his friend James Arness certainly put his stamp on the TV screen. Wayne and Arness-two talented actors, family men and gentlemen.

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    1. Classic TV Fan, I didn't realize Arness was that much younger than Wayne! I know they were pals, and Wayne even filmed an introduction for the first episode of Gunsmoke.

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  3. I know that John Ford typically gets accolades for working with The Duke, but I personally preferred Howard Hawks' treatment of him. My two favorite movies are El Dorado and Red River. Masterfully shot and the dialogue is snappy!

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    1. Pastor Rance, I do like Howard Hawks's movies with Duke! Especially Rio Bravo and El Dorado. Hawks really excelled at that ensemble cast sort of storytelling. I like Henry Hathaway's films with John Wayne too, especially The Sons of Katie Elder and North to Alaska.

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  4. This is fun! I didn't know it was his birthday yesterday. My favorite of his movies are The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, True Grit, and Big Jake. I feel like I should give The Sons of Katie Elder and The Searchers another go because I have the feeling I'd really dig them. Friday Movie Lunches with your kids sounds terrific. Have fun!

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    1. MC, well, birthdays of actors I love are the sorts of things I keep track of ;-) And of people I love in real life!

      The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance is splendid. Such a great twist to it, and wonderful acting from Wayne, Stewart, and Marvin!!!

      At the end of the summer, I'll do a little post rounding up all the things we watch on Fridays. I'm alternating a movie they've never seen one week with one they've seen before but haven't watched for a long time the next week, and so on. It's been great so far!

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  5. I'd really love to see your review of "The Sons of Katie Elder," because I've heard you and other people mention that movie, but I still don't know much about the story, or why folks love it so much.

    (Also, like, the name Katie. ;))

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    1. Katie, okay! It's been a few years since I watched it, but I used to have the entire script memorized. I'll rewatch it this summer and review it. The whole thing revolves around family dynamics, how they go wrong and if they can be mended. And I ADORE the score -- it's one of my absolute favorites from my favorite composer, Elmer Bernstein.

      Katie Elder is a force to be reckoned with, even after she dies. I think you would have liked her.

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    2. I'm looking forward to that!

      I think I would, too. <3 I like those types of female characters.

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  6. Happy Birthday, John Wayne! You know Big Jake will always be my favorite John Wayne film, but Sons of Katie Elder and Horse Soldiers run a close second! :-D

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    1. DKoren, Big Jake grows on me, thanks to you :-) I don't know that it will ever be a top favorite, but I at least don't dislike it anymore ;-) Might just be one of those I've had to grow into.

      Oh, man, I haven't seen Horse Soldiers in a coon's age! In fact, I only mostly remember the beehive thing and how excellent John Wayne and William Holden look in those uniforms <3

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  7. Rio Grande is my favorite (and I have to put in a good word for They Were Expendable, Red River, and Tall in the Saddle too). Incidentally, have you ever seen Island in the Sky? You probably have, but if you haven't I bet you would really like it. I personally think it's one of Wayne's best acting performances.

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    1. Elisabeth, those are all good! I haven't seen Island in the Sky yet, though I have a copy. I will, one of these days! I usually watch a new-to-me Wayne film for his birthday, but this year, instead I showed my kids Rio Bravo for their first time :-)

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