MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 1,165 this week

Pony Express (1953)

 -  History | Western  -  May 1953 (USA)
5.7
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.7/10 from 536 users  
Reviews: 11 user | 9 critic

Buffalo Bill and Wild Bill Hickock work to establish the Pony Express and fight Indians and California Separatists who seek to destroy it.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (story)
0Check in
0Share...

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb at Comic-Con 2014

Follow our coverage of Comic-Con 2014, direct from San Diego July 23-27 in our Comic-Con section.


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 31 titles
created 15 Nov 2011
 
a list of 463 titles
created 03 Jul 2012
 
a list of 43 titles
created 15 Jul 2012
 
a list of 43 titles
created 10 Mar 2013
 
a list of 24 titles
created 10 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Pony Express" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Pony Express (1953)

Pony Express (1953) on IMDb 5.7/10

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

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Pony Express.

User Polls

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Counterpoint (1967)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Famous orchestra conductor is captured by the Germans in WW2, is forced to put on private concerts for the Nazi generals.

Director: Ralph Nelson
Stars: Charlton Heston, Maximilian Schell, Kathryn Hays
Dark City (1950)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Gamblers who "took" an out-of-town sucker in a crooked poker game feel shadowy vengeance closing in on them.

Director: William Dieterle
Stars: Charlton Heston, Lizabeth Scott, Viveca Lindfors
Jivaro (1954)
Adventure | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A gorgeous American arrives in Brazilian headhunter country, seeking her scape-grace fiancé.

Director: Edward Ludwig
Stars: Fernando Lamas, Rhonda Fleming, Brian Keith
Comedy | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Charlton Heston stars as an American soldier behind Italian lines in World War II. In order to communicate German movements to the Allies, he uses carrier pigeons fitted with messages. As ... See full summary »

Director: Melville Shavelson
Stars: Charlton Heston, Elsa Martinelli, Harry Guardino
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

1863. Texas Ranger Todd Croyden and Union spy Whitney Randolph cross into Mexico to investigate a growing struggle for power between the French-supported Maximilian and the native-born ... See full summary »

Director: Lewis R. Foster
Stars: John Payne, Rhonda Fleming, Dennis O'Keefe
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

After the murder of her lover Caesar, Egypt's queen Cleopatra needs a new ally. She seduces his probable successor Marc Antony. This develops into real love and slowly leads to a war with the other possible successor - Octavius.

Director: Charlton Heston
Stars: Charlton Heston, Hildegard Neil, Eric Porter
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Concentrating on the personal lives of those involved, a war correspondent takes us through the preparations, landing and initial campaign on Guadalcanal during WWII.

Director: Lewis Seiler
Stars: Preston Foster, Lloyd Nolan, William Bendix
Diamond Head (1963)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Rich Hawaiian pineapple grower and US Senatorial candidate Richard Howland tries to control everything and everyone around him, including his headstrong sister, Slone. Howland learns the ... See full summary »

Director: Guy Green
Stars: Charlton Heston, Yvette Mimieux, George Chakiris
Will Penny (1968)
Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Aging cowboy Will Penny gets a line camp job on a large cattle spread and finds his isolated cabin is already occupied by a husbandless woman and her young son.

Director: Tom Gries
Stars: Charlton Heston, Joan Hackett, Donald Pleasence
Crosswinds (1951)
Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Adventurer tries to recover gold from sunken plane.

Director: Lewis R. Foster
Stars: John Payne, Rhonda Fleming, Forrest Tucker
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A tough, womanizing high-stakes gambler known only as Tennessee has an uneasy relationship with Duchess, madam of a thinly-disguised bordello, and no other friends at all. But he's saved ... See full summary »

Director: Allan Dwan
Stars: John Payne, Ronald Reagan, Rhonda Fleming
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A disgraced merchant marine officer elects to stay aboard his sinking cargo ship in order to prove the vessel was deliberately scuttled and, as a result, vindicate his good name.

Director: Michael Anderson
Stars: Gary Cooper, Charlton Heston, Michael Redgrave
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Evelyn Hastings
...
Denny Russell
...
Michael Moore ...
Rance Hastings
Porter Hall ...
Richard Shannon ...
Red Barrett
...
Joe Cooper
Stuart Randall ...
Pemberton
Lewis Martin ...
Sgt. Russell
Edit

Storyline

Buffalo Bill and Wild Bill Hickok join forces to establish a mail route that can get mail from St. Joseph, Missouri, to Sacramento, California, in ten days. Along the way they must battle bad weather, hostile Indians and outlaws intent on robbing the mail and shutting down the entire operation. Written by frankfob2@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"Their achievement can only be equaled...never excelled." ABRAHAM LINCOLN See more »

Genres:

History | Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

May 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Pony-Express  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The real Buffalo Bill (William F. Cody) was only 14 when the Pony Express was established. See more »

Goofs

Chief Yellow Hand's name is a mistranslation from the Cheyenne. His real name was Yellow Hair, which ironically was an Indian name for George Armstrong Custer. See more »

Quotes

Wild Bill Hickok: Listen, Shorty, you follow the redhead and I'll marry you.
Denny Russell: Easy for you to say. You don't like women.
Wild Bill Hickok: That's right. Maybe that's why I'm so fond of you.
Denny Russell: Thanks. Go shoot yourself.
See more »

Connections

Remake of The Pony Express (1925) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Forget the History Lesson. Just Sit back and Enjoy...
28 January 2009 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Just because "Pony Express" is a western and the Indians are characterized as the bad guys, does not mean it is without merit. Certainly viewers who insist that their movies must be politically correct learning experiences or must have educational value like a two hour university lecture will abhor its lighthearted approach and historical inaccuracy. Yet it is precisely this lighthearted approach that makes this movie so much fun.

The four principals, Charlton Heston (Buffalo Bill Cody), Forrest Tucker (Wild Bill Hickok), ravishing Rhonda Fleming, and hoydenish Jan Sterling serve up a potpourri of good-natured banter (and seem to have a lot of fun in doing so) that makes the running time of 101 minutes and incidental plot just whiz by. If nothing else, this movie serves to remind us that most people do have a sense of humor and that life is not all a funeral dirge.

California, led by a group of businessmen, wants to secede from the union and become an independent republic, citing the country's general apathy towards it as the primary reason. Eastern businessmen and politicians, on the other hand, feel that, by improving communications between Washington and California, they can discourage the citizens of that remote state from making such an irrational move. To this end they seek the help from Buffalo Bill and Wild Bill Hickok to organize a "pony express" which will deliver mail and news from East to West and visa-versa in double-quick time. In attempting to implement the scheme, the two friends must first overcome violent opposition from the owner of a stagecoach line who stands to lose a cross-country mail contract if the plan succeeds, hostile Indians who see the advent of the white man as yet another encroachment to their way of life, and the California businessmen themselves whose interests extend beyond Californian independence.

Of course, the story is full of historical inaccuracies. Buffalo Bill Cody and Wild Bill Hickok, for instance, barely knew each other. Hickok handled a six-gun much better than Buffalo Bill. "Pony Express" riders were mostly teenage orphan boys who had to be "willing to risk their lives every day" (Even in those days, businessmen knew how to protect themselves against lawsuits.). But so what? I first saw this movie when I was eight years old and loved it so much that I immediately went to the library to read up on these historical characters and events. Was I upset when I found that so much of the plot had been fabricated? Not in the least. I was grateful that the story was interesting enough to have piqued my interest in this specific chapter of American history. Any movie that induces you to want to learn something more cannot be a bad movie.

On the plus side, it does have some good action sequences (this was in the days before horses learned to gallop in slow motion), and uses the Indians as enemy only for dramatic effect and not as a source of derision. In fact, the chief, represented by white man, Pat Hogan, is probably the film's most admirable character. "I have never known Yellow Hand to lie or go back on his word," says Cody at one point and it is not without good reason that he shows some remorse after he is forced to kill him.

It also gives us a look at a young Charlton Heston, before he became a staple of the large, big budget biblical epics. At this point in his career, Heston was still experimenting, trying to find himself as actor by taking on such varied roles as a circus boss, President Andrew Jackson, a South American plantation owner, a soldier of fortune, or a surgeon. Just the fact that he doesn't have to deliver each line as if he were speaking from a pulpit makes his work more interesting, if not necessarily better.

Best of all, it was here that I saw Rhonda Fleming for the first time. I fell in love with her immediately and wanted to marry her when I grew up. When I watch this movie today, I still think it was a good idea.

Despite its overall low ratings, I cannot help but like "Pony Express". It has amiable characters, snappy dialogue (which emphasizes just how much modern screenwriters have lost their sense of humor) and a plot that moves briskly to its predictable conclusion. If the movie hearkens back to simpler, more clear-cut times, it is at least nice to see heroes who genuinely like each other and who can get the job done while having some fun doing it, rather than today's friendless, dour-faced loners with chips on their shoulders who spend every waking minute searching for "the truth."


25 of 26 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss Pony Express (1953) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?