MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 4,838 this week

Fort Apache (1948)

 -  Western  -  14 June 1948 (Brazil)
7.6
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.6/10 from 10,457 users  
Reviews: 73 user | 52 critic

At Fort Apache, an honorable and veteran war captain finds conflict when his regime is placed under the command of a young, glory hungry lieutenant colonel with no respect for the local Indian tribe.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (suggested by the story "Massacre")
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 33 titles
created 18 Feb 2011
 
a list of 28 titles
created 21 Jun 2011
 
a list of 25 titles
created 21 Nov 2011
 
a list of 36 titles
created 11 Jan 2012
 
a list of 22 titles
created 2 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Fort Apache" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Fort Apache (1948)

Fort Apache (1948) on IMDb 7.6/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Fort Apache.

User Polls

2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Rio Grande (1950)
Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Rio Grande takes place after the Civil War when the Union turned their attention towards the Apaches. Union officer Kirby Yorke is in charge of an outpost on the Rio Grande in which he is ... See full summary »

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Ben Johnson
Adventure | War | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A Union Cavalry outfit is sent behind confederate lines in strength to destroy a rail/supply centre. Along with them is sent a doctor who causes instant antipathy between him and the ... See full summary »

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, William Holden, Constance Towers
3 Godfathers (1948)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Three outlaws on the run discover a dying woman and her baby. They swear to bring the infant to safety across the desert, even at the risk of their own lives.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Pedro Armendáriz, Harry Carey Jr.
Stagecoach (1939)
Adventure | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

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.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Claire Trevor, Andy Devine
Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A Western retelling the tale of the Shoot-out at the OK Corral.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Henry Fonda, Linda Darnell, Victor Mature
Certificate: Passed Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A dramatized account of the role of the American PT Boats in the defense of the Philippines in World War II.

Directors: John Ford, Robert Montgomery
Stars: Robert Montgomery, John Wayne, Donna Reed
Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

After Custer and the 7th Cavalry are wiped out by Indians, everyone expects the worst. Capt. Nathan Brittles is ordered out on patrol but he's also required to take along Abby Allshard, ... See full summary »

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Joanne Dru, John Agar
The Searchers (1956)
Adventure | Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A Civil War veteran embarks on a journey to rescue his niece from an Indian tribe.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Jeffrey Hunter, Vera Miles
Red River (1948)
Action | Adventure | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Dunson is driving his cattle to Red River when his adopted son, Matthew, turns against him.

Directors: Howard Hawks, Arthur Rosson
Stars: John Wayne, Montgomery Clift, Joanne Dru
Wagon Master (1950)
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Two young drifters guide a Mormon wagon train to the San Juan Valley and encounter cutthroats, Indians, geography, and moral challenges on the journey.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Ben Johnson, Joanne Dru, Harry Carey Jr.
Chisum (1970)
Biography | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Cattle baron John Chisum joins forces with Billy the Kid and Pat Garrett to fight the Lincoln County land war.

Director: Andrew V. McLaglen
Stars: John Wayne, Forrest Tucker, Christopher George
Hondo (1953)
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Army despatch rider Hondo Lane discovers a woman and her son living in the midst of warring Apaches, and he becomes their protector.

Director: John Farrow
Stars: John Wayne, Geraldine Page, Ward Bond
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Sgt. Beaufort (as Pedro Armendariz)
...
...
...
...
...
Dick Foran ...
Guy Kibbee ...
Grant Withers ...
Jack Pennick ...
Ray Hyke ...
...
Edit

Storyline

In John Ford's sombre exploration mythologising of American heroes, he slowly reveals the character of Owen Thursday, who sees his new posting to the desolate Fort Apache as a chance to claim the military honour which he believes is rightfully his. Arrogant, obsessed with military form and ultimately self-destructive, Thursday attempts to destroy the Apache chief Cochise after luring him across the border from Mexico, against the advice of his subordinates. Written by Bernard Keane <BKeane2@email.dot.gov.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

John Ford's Masterpiece of the Frontier!

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

14 June 1948 (Brazil)  »

Also Known As:

War Party  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The Fort Apache fort, built for this production, stood for years. It was reused in dozens of productions, most notably the TV series The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin (1954). It was located at the Corriganville Movie Ranch in Simi Valley, California. Today it is possible to visit this location, as it is now administered as a City Park in Simi Valley. See more »

Goofs

After Capt. York rides out to rescue Thursday, Thursday asks for and is given York's saber. When we next see York on the ridge with the supplies watching the attack his saber is in his scabbard. See more »

Quotes

[Beaufort is addressing a group of new recruits]
Sgt. Johnny Beaufort: Gentlemen, this is a horse. You will observe it has no saddle. The reason it has no saddle is because it'll be easier for you to stay on without the saddle. Now, before we progress... did any of you gentlemen have the honor of serving with the Southern arms during the late War Between The States?
Recruit: Yes, sir. I had the pride, sir, of serving with Bedford Forrest.
Sgt. Johnny Beaufort: I am proud to shake your hand.
Recruit: Thank you, sir.
Sgt. Johnny Beaufort: I hope you have the pleasure of buying me...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in El recomendado (1985) See more »

Soundtracks

The Girl I Left Behind Me
(uncredited)
Traditional
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Fonda And Wayne Clash In John Ford Cavalry Pic
13 January 1999 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

Lieutenant-Colonel Owen Thursday arrives at a frontier fort to take up his new command. His harsh, unbending philosophy of soldiering creates something of a stir in the regiment. His pretty daughter Philadelphia causes a rather different commotion.

The headstrong commander refuses to listen to the advice of his loyal captain, Kirby York, who knows frontier life and enjoys a rapport with the indian chiefs. The two officers are both strong characters, and their differing ideas inevitably lead to a clash.

Cochise and his braves are willing to accommodate the white man so long as their concerns are handled with diplomacy. Unfortunately, the high-handed approach of Lieutenant-Colonel Thursday cause relations to deteriorate, and conflict ensues.

In the course of the 1940's and 50's, director John Ford returned repeatedly to this subject-matter, John Wayne in Monument Valley with the US cavalry, fighting redskins and singing Irish folksongs. The stirring anthem in this movie is "The Girl I Left Behind Me", sung as the regiment rides out in full panoply to meet Cochise - although "She Wore A Yellow Ribbon" gets an airing, too.

The cavalry regiment itself is a protagonist in the story, regarded as a living entity by its members. When Captain York is promoted to Colonel and commands the regiment, he makes a powerful speech stressing the continuity and tradition which have made the regiment great. The sense of hierarchy is strong. This is a world of order in which army regulations govern even the way an officer presents his calling-card. Soldiers can quote the regulations by heart. This well-regulated military force will, we feel, impose civilisation on this wild frontier.

Examples of the regiment's rigid code keep recurring. The NCOs' dance has its own elaborate protocol, which not even Colonel Thursday dares to flout. Feelings over the O'Rourke marriage reach boiling-point, but everyone adheres to the rules of military courtesy. Washington's Birthday is celebrated as a regimental occasion. The Irish sergeants are all related by blood and marriage, and as their exuberant fraternal greetings subside, military discipline asserts itself effortlessly.

"I'm not a martinet," protests Colonel Thursday, the most extreme martinet imaginable. He is inflexible in his enforcement of the military code, and too stubborn and wrongheaded to listen to the advice of his officers, who are experienced frontier campaigners. He completely misses the presence of Cochise's war party because he has no combat experience and doesn't know to watch the skyline for dust clouds. In addition, Thursday is a terrible snob. He calls young Michael O'Rourke a 'savage' for a perceived laxity of discipline, and sets his face against the marriage of Michael and Philadelphia because of "the barrier between your class and mine". He is dismayed that the son of a sergeant should have passed through West Point, and needlessly offends Cochise by talking down to him.

And yet even Owen Thursday has a human side. We gather that there is some personal secret between him and Captain Collingwood, and we almost smile when the armchair collapses under him. Most tellingly, Thursday returns to the beleaguered redoubt after he has been rescued. He redeems himself by rejoining his soldiers in the thick of the fighting.

When young Philadelphia Thursday (Shirley Temple) studies Michael O'Rourke in her purse mirror, we know that these two will be the love interest. Also, as this incident illustrates, the womenfolk of Fort Apache tend to run the show in this masculine enclave. The Thursday residence is somewhat joyless, especially when compared with Aunt Emily's cosy quarters. The women brush aside the colonel's seniority and call in Mrs. O'Rourke to refurnish the place. In one of the film's good jokes, no fewer than eight Mrs. O'Rourkes answer the call. There is a touching scene when the regiment moves out and the women are left together. Mrs. Collingwood is torn, because her husband has his safe posting back east and needn't go into battle, but she knows how important it is for him to prove his courage. The womenfolk urge her to call him back, but she reluctantly allows him to ride out.

John Ford laced many of his films with Irish humour, and "Fort Apache" is no exception. The ubiquitous Victor McLaglen plays Sergeant Festus Mulcahy, and he and the O'Rourkes run the fort - that is, whenever they are not in the jailhouse on charges of drinking and brawling. Outrageously, Mulcahy promotes a raw recruit to corporal, simply because he's Irish. Quincannon virtually lives in the jailhouse, but he has a fine tenor voice, so he is released from custody in order to serenade the young lovers with his rendition of "Genevieve". When the dishonest trader Meacham has his whisky stock confiscated and marked for destruction, the sad faces of the sergeants make a comical picture, and the subsequent 'destruction' is even funnier.

Ford is a master of composition. York rides out to parley with Cochise and is engrossed in dialogue, leaving Thursday stranded and excluded. We hear the thunder of hooves offscreen before we see the charge, and its impact is magnified accordingly. In the sequence where York and Beaufort ride to negotiate with Cochise, the screen is filled with stunning images of rock and sky. The charging cavalry are cleverly 'lost' in their own dust, which closes behind them like a curtain, ending the scene.

Wayne is curiously subdued in this film. This is partly because he plays a conscientious subordinate, and partly because the confrontation with Fonda is eclipsed by other plot developments.


40 of 52 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
O'Rourke Snr. Adams5905
Colonel/General Thursday curlew-2
Fonda as Villain ben-1047
Drink of scripture broadwayjoe9394
marching song slamfist
John Ford cavalry trilogy mike-foxton4
Discuss Fort Apache (1948) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page