IMDb > Stagecoach (1939)
Stagecoach
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Stagecoach (1939) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 63 | slideshow) Videos (see all 3)
Stagecoach -- A simple stagecoach trip is complicated by the fact that Geronimo is on the warpath in the area. The passengers on the coach include a a drunken doctor...
Stagecoach -- US Theatrical Trailer from Warner Bros.

Overview

User Rating:
7.9/10   25,172 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Ernest Haycox (original story)
Dudley Nichols (screen play)
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Stagecoach on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
2 March 1939 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
Danger holds the reins as the devil cracks the whip ! Desperate men ! Frontier women ! Rising above their pasts in a West corrupted by violence and gun-fire ! See more »
Plot:
A group of people traveling on a stagecoach find their journey complicated by the threat of Geronimo and learn something about each other in the process. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
Won 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 5 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Over the rise, it's the Duke, Winchester in hand See more (272 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Claire Trevor ... Dallas

John Wayne ... Ringo Kid

Andy Devine ... Buck

John Carradine ... Hatfield

Thomas Mitchell ... Doc Boone
Louise Platt ... Lucy Mallory
George Bancroft ... Curley

Donald Meek ... Peacock
Berton Churchill ... Gatewood

Tim Holt ... Lieutenant
Tom Tyler ... Luke Plummer
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Dorothy Appleby ... Girl in Saloon (uncredited)
Frank Baker ... (uncredited)

Chief John Big Tree ... Indian Scout (uncredited)
Ted Billings ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Wiggie Blowne ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Danny Borzage ... (uncredited)
Ed Brady ... Lordsburg Saloon Owner (uncredited)
Fritzi Brunette ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Yakima Canutt ... Cavalry Scout (uncredited)
Nora Cecil ... Boone's Landlady (uncredited)
Steve Clemente ... Bit (uncredited)
Bill Cody ... Rancher (uncredited)
Jack Curtis ... Bartender (uncredited)
Marga Ann Deighton ... Mrs. Pickett (uncredited)
Patricia Doyle ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Tex Driscoll ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Johnny Eckert ... Small Role (uncredited)
Franklyn Farnum ... Deputy Frank (uncredited)
Francis Ford ... Billy Pickett (uncredited)
Brenda Fowler ... Mrs. Gatewood (uncredited)
Helen Gibson ... Girl in Saloon (uncredited)
Robert Homans ... Ed - Editor (uncredited)

William Hopper ... Sergeant (uncredited)
Si Jenks ... Bartender (uncredited)
Cornelius Keefe ... Capt. Whitney (uncredited)
Florence Lake ... Nancy Whitney (uncredited)
Al Lee ... Small Role (uncredited)
Duke R. Lee ... Lordsburg Sheriff (uncredited)
Theodore Lorch ... Lordsburg Express Agent (uncredited)
Chris-Pin Martin ... Chris (uncredited)
Jim Mason ... Jim - Tonto Express Agent (uncredited)
Louis Mason ... Tonto Sheriff (uncredited)
Merrill McCormick ... Ogler (uncredited)
J.P. McGowan ... (uncredited)
Walter McGrail ... Capt. Sickel (uncredited)
Paul McVey ... Pony Express Agent (uncredited)
Jack Mohr ... Small Role (uncredited)
Kent Odell ... Billy Pickett Jr (uncredited)
Artie Ortego ... Lordsburg Bar Patron (uncredited)
Vester Pegg ... Hank Plummer (uncredited)
Jack Pennick ... Bartender in Tonto (uncredited)
Chris Phillips ... Small Role (uncredited)
Joe Rickson ... Ike Plummer (uncredited)
Buddy Roosevelt ... Rancher (uncredited)
Elvira Ríos ... Yakima (uncredited)
Mickey Simpson ... (uncredited)
Margaret Smith ... Small Role (uncredited)

Woody Strode ... Man in Saloon (uncredited)
Chuck Stubbs ... (uncredited)
Harry Tenbrook ... Telegraph Operator (uncredited)
Leonard Trainor ... Small Role (uncredited)
Mary Kathleen Walker ... Lucy's Infant (uncredited)
Bryant Washburn ... Capt. Simmons (uncredited)
Whitehorse ... Indian Chief (uncredited)

Hank Worden ... Cavalryman Extra (uncredited)
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Directed by
John Ford 
 
Writing credits
Ernest Haycox (original story)

Dudley Nichols (screen play)

Ben Hecht  uncredited

Produced by
John Ford .... producer (uncredited)
 
Original Music by
Gerard Carbonara (uncredited)
 
Cinematography by
Bert Glennon (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
Otho Lovering (film editor)
Dorothy Spencer (film editor)
Walter Reynolds (uncredited)
 
Art Direction by
Alexander Toluboff (art direction)
 
Costume Design by
Walter Plunkett (costumes)
 
Makeup Department
Norbert A. Myles .... makeup artist (uncredited)
 
Production Management
Daniel Keefe .... production manager (uncredited)
Jack Kirston .... assistant production manager (uncredited)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Wingate Smith .... assistant director
Yakima Canutt .... second unit director (uncredited)
Lowell J. Farrell .... assistant director (uncredited)
 
Art Department
Wiard Ihnen .... associate art director (as Wiard B. Ihnen)
 
Sound Department
Frank Maher .... sound
Robert Parrish .... sound effects editor (uncredited)
 
Special Effects by
Ray Binger .... special photographic effects (uncredited)
 
Stunts
Yakima Canutt .... stunt coordinator (uncredited)
Iron Eyes Cody .... stunts (uncredited)
Ken Cooper .... stunts (uncredited)
Johnny Eckert .... stunts (uncredited)
W. Frank Long .... stunts (uncredited)
Jack Mohr .... stunts (uncredited)
David Sharpe .... stunts (uncredited)
Henry Wills .... stunts (uncredited)
Billy Yellow .... stunt rigger (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
James V. King .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Ned Scott .... still photographer (uncredited)
Cliff Shirpser .... assistant camera (uncredited)
 
Casting Department
Lee Bradley .... extras casting (uncredited)
Harry Goulding .... extras casting (uncredited)
 
Editorial Department
Otho Lovering .... supervising editor (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Louis Gruenberg .... musical score adaptation: based on American folk songs
Richard Hageman .... musical score adaptation: based on American folk songs
W. Franke Harling .... musical score adaptation: based on American folk songs (as Franke Harling)
John Leipold .... musical score adaptation: based on American folk songs
Boris Morros .... musical director
Leo Shuken .... musical score adaptation: based on American folk songs
Danny Borzage .... musician: accordion (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Walter Wanger .... presenter
Danny Keith .... location manager (uncredited)
W. Frank Long .... horse handler/wrangler (uncredited)
 
Crew verified as complete


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Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
96 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)
Certification:
Argentina:Atp | Australia:G | Finland:S (1951) | Germany:12 (DVD rating) | Iceland:L | Norway:16 (1939) | South Korea:15 | Sweden:15 | UK:U | USA:Not Rated | USA:TV-G (TV rating) | USA:Approved (certificate #5029) | West Germany:12 (nf)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Doctor Boone's misquote, 'Is this the face that wrecked a thousand ships/ and burned the towerless tops of Ilium?', is from 'The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus' by Christopher Marlowe, Scene xiv.See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: While the stage is at the ferry, Curly tells Buck to drive the stage into the river. The next shot shows Curly tying down one of the floats on the river bank.See more »
Quotes:
[first lines]
Cavalry scout:These hills here are full of Apaches. They've burnt every ranch building in sight.
[referring to Indian scout]
Cavalry scout:He had a brush with them last night. Says they're being stirred up by Geronimo.
Capt. Sickel:Geronimo? How do we know he isn't lying?
Cavalry scout:No, he's a Cheyenne. They hate Apaches worse than we do.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Soundtrack:
Jeanie with the Light Brown HairSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
55 out of 72 people found the following review useful.
Over the rise, it's the Duke, Winchester in hand, 5 September 2005
Author: bkoganbing from Buffalo, New York

One of my favorite movie shots of all time comes in Stagecoach when the coach rounds a bend and you see a figure in the distance and has the camera zooms in closer you recognize it as John Wayne, saddle in one hand and winchester rifle in the other.

Certainly the figure of John Wayne is familiar enough even to today's moviegoers as the man who put more people in theater seats than any other player. But back then in 1939 all he was known as was B picture cowboy who was a friend of John Ford, whom Ford happened to be giving a break to. He sure took advantage of it.

Wayne heads an ensemble group of players who are journeying from Tonto to Lordsburg by stagecoach. It is a dramatization of the western novel by Ernest Haycox and John Ford brilliantly cast his film.

Anyone of them could have been Oscar material, but one player did win an Oscar, Thomas Mitchell as the alcoholic Doc Boone. 1939 was maybe the highpoint of Mitchell's career. Imagine being in three films nominated for Oscars, Stagecoach, Gone With the Wind, and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington. He could have been nominated for any one of them.

On top of the coach is driver Andy Devine and riding shotgun is Marshal George Bancroft. Devine is a befuddled dunce and a lot of reviewers usually pass him over in talking about the film. To be sure he is, but there is a scene where the stagecoach has to cross a deep stream. A pontoon like device is rigged, but it's professional teamster Andy Devine who drives the stage across with his team swimming it. He may be a dunce, but he's a professional at his job. I think it was Andy's moment to shine.

Bancroft is a stern but kindly marshal. He and Mitchell are friends of Wayne who plays the Ringo Kid. Wayne's busted out the penitentiary to get the Plummer brothers who framed him. There's a reward for Wayne, but Marshal Bancroft ain't worried about the reward, he's concerned about Wayne getting killed, biting off more than he can chew.

However Mitchell spends most of the journey cultivating mild mannered Donald Meek who's a whiskey salesman. A useful friend to have you like to imbibe. If ever a character actor was aptly named it certainly had to be Donald Meek.

In 1939 you couldn't say that Claire Trevor was playing a prostitute named Dallas. But it's surely hinted at often enough. Claire Trevor was Hollywood's greatest portrayer of girls with easy virtue and a heart of gold which she has here. She got her Oscar in Key Largo again playing just such a role. The difference is she loves good guy John Wayne instead bad guy Edward G. Robinson in Key Largo.

And to add to the mix we have an embezzling banker on the journey played by Berton Churchill who played many a sanctimonious hypocrite in his career. He gets news that the telegraph is down because of the Apaches on the warpath and in an act of impulse fills a satchel full of the bank's money and grabs the stagecoach at the last minute. He's also trying to escape a hatchet faced harridan of a wife. Nevertheless he's the least sympathetic and most useless character on the journey.

A few months ago I saw and reviewed the film Carrie which was based on a Theodore Dreiser novel. The lead character in that, George Hurstwood is also an embezzler of his employer's money as he runs away to New York to get away from his harridan of a wife. But Hurstwood, same crime for the same reasons, is a sympathetic figure. Not our friend banker Gatewood as Churchill portrays him here. It some times depends on the writer's point of view.

The last two passengers are John Carradine a mysterious gambler of Southern origins and the pregnant wife of an Army Captain played by stage actress Louise Platt. He also boards the stage at the last minute as he's crushing out big time over her. He becomes her protector during the journey.

Of course Stagecoach is the first film that John Ford shot in Monument Valley and the long shots of the valley with the lonely stagecoach driving on to Lordsburg are breathtaking.

And there's the Indian attack. The question is often asked why didn't the Indians just shoot the horses. The real answer is you wouldn't want to cut short abruptly one of the most spectacular chase scenes in film history. And then of course maybe the Indians wanted the live horses.

Ford uses for the first time a spectacular gambit during the Indian attack. I won't say more, but think about the fact that he repeated the same shot in Fort Apache with the Indians chasing John Agar and the repair party there.

What I like most about Stagecoach altogether is that it sticks to the first rule of movies, it moves. Even in the scenes of dialog inside the coach you get the feeling of movement. Nothing static about it, and the story could never be adequately done on a stage.

It's what movie making is all about.

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