The Conqueror (1956)

Approved  |   |  Adventure, Biography, History  |  28 March 1956 (USA)
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Ratings: 3.3/10 from 2,408 users  
Reviews: 57 user | 26 critic

Mongol chief Temujin battles against Tartar armies and for the love of the Tartar princess Bortai. Temujin becomes the emperor Genghis Khan.



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Complete credited cast:
Jamuga (as Pedro Armendariz)
Wang Khan
Leslie Bradley ...
Peter Mamakos ...
Leo Gordon ...
Tartar Captain
Richard Loo ...
Captain of Wang's guard


In ancient times, the Mongolian warlord Temujin must do battle against the rival tribe that killed his father. The battles pale in comparison with Temujin's home life, as he attempts to woo the heart of the red-haired Tartar prisoner Bortai whom he has captured in a raid. He must also deal with various intrigues within his palace. Eventually, Bortai falls to his manly charms, Temujin defeats his enemies within and without, and is crowned Genghis Khan. Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


They conquered each other and then the world. See more »


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

28 March 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Conqueror of the Desert  »

Box Office


$6,000,000 (estimated)


$4,500,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Filmed between mid-May and August 5, 1954. It premiered in Los Angeles on February 22, 1956, then opened in Manhattan at the Criterion Theatre on March 30, 1956. See more »


When Temujin throws a spear at a man in a stream, the wire guiding it is visible. The spear's trajectory is also wobbly. See more »


Temujin: I feel this Tartar woman is for me, and my blood says, take her. There are moments for wisdom and moments when I listen to my blood; my blood says, take this Tartar woman.
See more »


Referenced in Farscape: Throne for a Loss (1999) See more »

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User Reviews

One of the great ones!
12 June 2001 | by (San Francisco Bay Area) – See all my reviews

I saw this film at age 9 when it was newly released, back in the sunset years of the Technicolor historical spectacular. I knew immediately that it was bad, GLORIOUSLY in-your-face bad! I eagerly taped it about fifteen years ago off a television broadcast and have gleefully lent the tape to friends and acquaintances many times since to spread the word.

The incomprehensible miscasting of John Wayne aside, THE CONQUEROR is bad in so many ways that's it's difficult to focus on the best (or worst) elements. Perhaps most delightfully awful is the dialogue:

"She is woman, Jamuga...much woman. Should her perfidy be less than that of other women?" (John Wayne to Pedro Armendariz)

"Kumlik's daughter! Spawn of the devil! Let your men make sport with her!" "No, mo-ther, I will keep this wo-man for my own plea-sure!" (Exchange between mom Agnes Moorehead and son John Wayne)

"You will love me, will love me of your own will before the sun rises!" "Before that day dawns, Mongol, the vultures will feast upon your heart!" (Love chat between Wayne and Hayward)

These are three of literally dozens of examples of prime dialogue kitsch with which THE CONQUEROR abounds. It is priceless...see it!

45 of 57 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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