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 »
During the last winter of the Civil War, cavalry officer Amos Dundee leads a contentious troop of Army regulars, Confederate prisoners and scouts on an expedition into Mexico to destroy a ... See full summary »
A pair of grizzled frontiersmen fight indians, guzzle liquor, and steal squaws in their search for a legendary valley 'so full of beaver that they jump right into your traps' in this ... See full summary »
Set in Mexico, a nun called Sara is rescued from three cowboys by Hogan, who is on his way to do some reconnaissance, for a future mission to capture a French fort. The French are chasing ... See full summary »
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 commander. The secret plan for the mission is overheard by a southern belle who must be taken along to assure her silence. The Union officers each have different reasons for wanting to be on the mission. Written by
John Vogel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The quote at the Greenbriar dinner, "And yet your fair discourse hath been as sweet as sugar making the hard way sweet and delectable" is from "Richard II", Act II Scene 3 by William Shakespeare. See more »
Although the film takes place in 1863, Dr. Kendall is shown boiling surgical instruments to prevent them from infecting patients, a process that was not developed until 1879, by Dr. Louis Pasteur. See more »
The fields, woodlands and rivers of Tennassee drenched in summer sunlight are in stark contrast to the horrors of civil war as depicted in John Ford's "The Horse Soldiers". John Wayne's mission to lead a troop of Yankee soldiers behind Confederate lines to destroy a railway base vital to the South's supply lines is fraught with danger. Skirmishes inevitably result in injuries and death, the former often giving rise to amputations. Although made well before the time that the full appalingness of warfare come to be depicted in films such as "Saving Captain Ryan", from "Drums Along the Mohawk" onwards Ford never shirked the unpleasant. Incurable romantic that he was, he gave his work a hard edge whenever it was needed. Although the term "road movie" to categorise films based on journeys was not then in general usage, this fascinating work, with horses replacing cars, stands as one of the genres finest examples. And yet, judging from many of this site's user comments, it remains one of Ford's most under appreciated films. I find this rather strange as it contains most of the ingredients that are the hallmarks of those generally regarded as masterworks, westerns such as "The Searchers", "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance" and "My Darling Clementine", not forgetting his glorious Irish romp, "The Quiet Man". A shrew is tamed, there is a measure of drunken knockabout and the soundtrack pulsates with rousing cavalry tunes and bugle calls. I have no quarrel with the fact that it is episodic rather than tightly knit. This somehow makes it all the more compatible with its journeying structure. Each episode on the way is brought out in sharp relief, be it the Southern belle's false hospitality and attempted betrayal, the central climax at the railroad station or the delightful interlude of the attack by the boy soldiers from the Confederate military academy (one of my favourite sequences from any Ford film). John Wayne plays what is almost a variation on his Ethan role in "The Searchers", his anger here not vent on Indians but on the medical profession which he holds responsible for his wife's death. His embittered relationship with his company's medical officer played by William Holden gives this otherwise picaresque film a strong dramatic unity. I can only advise those who consider this one of Ford's minor works to see it several times. From my own experience I find it emerges stronger on each viewing.
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