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Fort Apache (1948)

Approved | | Western | 14 June 1948 (Brazil)
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.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (suggested by the story "Massacre")
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2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Sgt. Beaufort (as Pedro Armendariz)
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Jack Pennick ...
Ray Hyke ...
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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:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

14 June 1948 (Brazil)  »

Also Known As:

War Party  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As noted above, the plot is loosely based on George Armstrong Custer's story. The fact the character personifying Custer is called Thursday is a hidden reference to his birthday: Custer was born on December 5, 1839, which is a Thursday. See more »

Goofs

As York and Thursday are about to leave to trail Lt O'Rourke and the repair wagon, Thursday tells York that he doesn't like exposed galluses. Galluses are suspenders. After that, in every scene almost everyone - including officers - are wearing exposed galluses. See more »

Quotes

[Yorke has ridden in to save the colonel, but Thursday has decided to die with his men rather than face disgrace]
Lt. Col. Thursday: Trouble you for your sabre, Captain.
Captain Yorke: My sabre?
Lt. Col. Thursday: I must rejoin my command.
Captain Yorke: The command is wiped out, sir, and there's nothing we can do about it.
Lt. Col. Thursday: I'm not asking your opinion, Capt. Yorke. When you command this regiment - and you probably will - command it! Your sabre, sir.
[Capt. Yorke hands him his sabre]
Lt. Col. Thursday: Any questions, Captain?
[...]
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Connections

Featured in The John Wayne Anthology (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

O Dem Golden Slippers
(uncredited)
Written by James Allen Bland
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

A great American film
20 April 2003 | by (Virginia) – See all my reviews

Director John Ford's first entry in his cavalry trilogy is this excellent film about life on a military outpost far from the glamorous theaters of the Indian Wars on the northern plains. The film touches on character development of the officers and enlisted men on the post, family relationships and the class distinctions among the military social order. Henry Fonda is great as a bitter, unhappy colonel who feels unappreciated by the military hierarchy and is displeased by his assignment to the isolated desert areas. John Wayne gives the film just the right balance as a captain who looks out for his men and knows Indians. Ford has his regular cast on board for the film, and John Agar and Shirley Temple handle the romantic clinches. The pace is slowed somewhat by comedy bits that add nothing to the film's substance. The black and white camera work is stunning and the music is reflective and melancholy.


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