IMDb > The Ox-Bow Incident (1943)
The Ox-Bow Incident
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The Ox-Bow Incident (1943) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

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8.1/10   14,023 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Lamar Trotti (written for the screen by)
Walter Van Tilburg Clark (from the novel by)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Ox-Bow Incident on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
21 May 1943 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
LYNCH LAW RULES THE MOB! (original print ad - all caps) See more »
Plot:
When a posse catches up three men suspected of killing a local farmer, some of them become strongly divided on whether or not to lynch the men. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Awards:
Nominated for Oscar. Another 4 wins See more »
User Reviews:
A little-known cinematic treasure See more (117 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Henry Fonda ... Gil Carter

Dana Andrews ... Donald Martin
Mary Beth Hughes ... Rose Mapen

Anthony Quinn ... Juan Martínez
William Eythe ... Gerald Tetley

Harry Morgan ... Art Croft (as Henry Morgan)

Jane Darwell ... Jenny Grier
Matt Briggs ... Judge Daniel Tyler

Harry Davenport ... Arthur Davies
Frank Conroy ... Major Tetley

Marc Lawrence ... Jeff Farnley
Paul Hurst ... Monty Smith
Victor Kilian ... Darby
Chris-Pin Martin ... Poncho
Willard Robertson ... Sheriff Risley
Ted North ... Joyce
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
C.E. Anderson ... Posse Member (uncredited)
Stanley Andrews ... Bartlett (uncredited)
Hank Bell ... Red (uncredited)
William 'Billy' Benedict ... Green (uncredited)
Paul E. Burns ... Winder (uncredited)
George Chandler ... Jimmy Cairnes (uncredited)
Tex Cooper ... Posse Member (uncredited)
Forrest Dillon ... Mark (uncredited)
Dan Dix ... Posse Member (uncredited)
Larry Dods ... Posse Member (uncredited)
Tex Driscoll ... Posse Member (uncredited)
Francis Ford ... Halva Harvey (uncredited)

Margaret Hamilton ... Mrs. Larch (uncredited)
Rondo Hatton ... Gabe Hart (uncredited)
Don House ... Posse Member (uncredited)
George Lloyd ... Moore (uncredited)
Tom London ... Deputy (uncredited)
Frank McGrath ... Posse Member (uncredited)
George Meeker ... Mr. Swanson (uncredited)
Frank Orth ... Larry Kinkaid (uncredited)
George Plues ... Alec Small (uncredited)
Dick Rich ... Deputy Butch Mapes (uncredited)
Ed Richard ... Posse Member (uncredited)
Walt Robbins ... Posse Member (uncredited)
Almira Sessions ... Miss Swanson (uncredited)
Clint Sharp ... Posse Member (uncredited)
Ben Watson ... Posse Member (uncredited)
Leigh Whipper ... Sparks (uncredited)

Directed by
William A. Wellman 
 
Writing credits
Lamar Trotti (written for the screen by)

Walter Van Tilburg Clark (from the novel by)

Produced by
Lamar Trotti .... producer
William Goetz .... executive producer (uncredited)
 
Original Music by
Cyril J. Mockridge 
 
Cinematography by
Arthur C. Miller (director of photography) (as Arthur Miller)
 
Film Editing by
Allen McNeil (film editor)
 
Art Direction by
James Basevi 
Richard Day 
 
Set Decoration by
Frank E. Hughes (set decorations)
Thomas Little (set decorations)
 
Costume Design by
Earl Luick (costumes)
 
Makeup Department
Guy Pearce .... makeup artist
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Ad Schaumer .... assistant director (uncredited)
James Tinling .... second unit director (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Alfred Bruzlin .... sound
Roger Heman Sr. .... sound (as Roger Heman)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Sam Benson .... wardrobe (uncredited)
 
Editorial Department
Lyman Hallowell .... apprentice editor (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Conrad Salinger .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Herbert W. Spencer .... orchestrator (uncredited)
 
Crew verified as complete


Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
75 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Recording)
Certification:
Argentina:13 | Australia:PG | Canada:PG (video rating) | Finland:K-16 | Germany:12 (DVD rating) | Netherlands:12 (2008) | South Korea:12 (2003) (DVD rating) | Sweden:15 | UK:A (original rating) | UK:PG (re-rating) (2006) | USA:Not Rated | USA:Approved (PCA #8590) | USA:TV-G (TV rating) | West Germany:12 (f)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The rights to Walter Van Tilburg Clark's book were originally acquired in 1941 by Harold Hurley, a former Paramount producer who tried unsuccessfully to make a distribution deal with United Artists. Modern sources note that director William A. Wellman bought the rights from Hurley and then interested Twentieth Century-Fox production chief Darryl F. Zanuck in producing the story. Zanuck agreed on the condition that Wellman direct two other films for the studio, Thunder Birds [Soldiers of the Air] (1942) and Buffalo Bill (1944).See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: Gil Carter (Fonda) pulls his gun out twice when the mob first arrives at the Ox-Bow.See more »
Quotes:
Major Tetley:This is only slightly any of your business, my friend. Remember that.
Gil Carter:Hangin' is any man's business that's around.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Soundtrack:
Red River ValleySee more »

FAQ

How much sex, violence, and profanity are in this movie?
Is this movie based on a novel?
Any recommendations for other movies similar to "The Ox-bow Incident"?
See more »
42 out of 57 people found the following review useful.
A little-known cinematic treasure, 11 June 2003
Author: Laurence Dang from United States

The Ox-Bow Incident can be safely ranked as one of classic cinema's great treasures. Applauded by critics worldwide, it has still received very little public recognition and appreciation and it is about time this changed. While the theme of the movie may not be extremely original by today's standards, it is as timely as ever. The issues of mob psychology and the miscarriage of justice which can occur when passion overcomes reason and logic were not new even at the time of the filming of the movie, but even then, few were willing to listen to such a sobering tale of morality and justice while America was at war. Yet this is a tale which must be told often and well, lest we fall prey to errors resulting from forgetting its lesson.

This being said, the tale itself and its delivery makes The Ox-Bow Incident more than a film with a message. By casting its characters in a shadow of moral doubt, rather than in the traditional bright light reserved for western heroes as modern knights in shining armor, this movie truly marks a departure from classic western movies filmed until then, and sets the precedent for future "revisionist" westerns which were to come nearly 15 years later. In many ways this film is actually more a tragic play in the theatrical sense than a typical Hollywood movie. The classic elements of unity of time, space and action are used here with great effectiveness and emphasize the dramatic nature of the story and its ultimate, almost inexorable outcome, in the great tradition of Greek or Shakespearan tragedies.

Indeed one of the most surprising moments in the film does not occur in the middle or at the end of the movie, but at the very beginning, as the main character and his partner enter the saloon in the small town which is the center of the drama. Thanks to Fonda's superb characterization, we are confronted from the very start with a bitter, angry and essentially anti-heroic protagonist, quite unlike most typical western "good guys". Even though we are invited to identify with Gil Carter, he is not a particularly likeable guy. Surly, edgy, reticent, and at times, gratuitously violent, he does not present a very effective resistance to the evil he witnesses, even as he disapproves of it. Truly, one would be hard-pressed to find anyone good or likeable here, save for the black preacher, probably the most innocent and morally pure of the characters. Indeed, all the characters are drawn with several layers of psychology; which can sometimes only be revealed after several viewings of the film. One may draw for example some quick conclusions regarding the infamous Major Tetley or his son, but the true villain may be in fact the judge, who even as he realizes a gross injustice is about to be committed, choses to do nothing out of laziness and indifference.

The movie was never provided a big budget, which accounts for its set location and the size of its cast, limited in number but of epic proportions in talent (featuring a young and great Anthony Quinn, Dana Andrew at his very peak, a surprisingly unmotherly Jane Darwell, and a powerful Harry Morgan). But do not let the modest filming conditions fool you. This is a true masterpiece.

One last note: one of the most memorable and enduring scenes is the reading of a letter by Gil Carter. This scene rightly belongs among the treasures of classic cinema, along with Citizen Kane's Rosebud and Tom Joad's "wherever there's a fight" speech.

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'I thought there was one white man among you' mgib490
Anyone think this movie is too repetitive and preachy? dgoldmeier
Two important characters somewhat overlooked mlraymond
My only problem with the movie... SirlanceAlot
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