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The Alamo (1960)

Unrated | | Adventure, Drama, History | 24 October 1960 (USA)
In 1836, a small band of soldiers sacrifice their lives in hopeless combat against a massive army in order to prevent a tyrant from smashing the new Republic of Texas.

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Writer:

(original screenplay)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Flaca
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Carlos Arruza ...
Jester Hairston ...
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John Dierkes ...
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Storyline

In 1836, General Santa Anna and the Mexican Army is sweeping across Texas. To be able to stop him, General Sam Houston needs time to get his main force into shape. To buy that time he orders Colonel William Travis to defend a small mission on the Mexicans' route at all costs. Travis' small troop is swelled by groups accompanying Jim Bowie and Davy Crockett, but as the situation becomes ever more desperate Travis makes it clear there will be no shame if they leave while they can. Written by Jeremy Perkins <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

NOW! For Those Who Missed It! AGAIN! For Those Who Saw It...and Can't Forget It! (re-release) See more »


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

24 October 1960 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Alamo  »

Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$7,910,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut) (1993 video release) | (1967 re-release) | (roadshow)

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System) (5.0) (L-R)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.20 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Knowing John Wayne was strapped for cash in producing the movie, Richard Boone agreed to waive his fee if Wayne gave him the beautiful buckskin jacket he wore as Sam Houston. Wayne happily agreed. See more »

Goofs

The soldiers sing "Happy Birthday to You" to a little girl, 57 years before it was written. (This song is only heard in the longer "Director's Cut" version of the film on VHS or LaserDisc, not the generally available 160 minute DVD version.) See more »

Quotes

[the Alamo garrison is informed that no reinforcements are coming]
Jim Bowie: Well, that's it. I'm taking my men out of here now. Cutting through to the north. You coming?
Davy Crockett: Seems like the better part of valor.
See more »

Connections

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

Soundtracks

Here's to the Ladies
Lyrics by Paul Francis Webster
Music by Dimitri Tiomkin
Performed separately by Frankie Avalon and Chill Wills (uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
The Mt. Everest of all Westerns
19 October 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Majestic and poignant, a glorious and mighty epic that will last down through the ages. Mr. Wayne never intended to make a documentary, but rather as he said in many interviews at the time, that he considered it one of the greatest stories of heroic American "folklore". Of course it is based on one of the valiant battles ever fought on this planet, but of course all that remains of that horrible slaughter, are letters, accounts of survivors from both armies ( and yes, diaries that are very likely accurate, if not totally honest, by participants). The point is

  • anyone that makes a movie, book, article based on history - had


better have videotape or audio, to prove their accounts, or they will be torn to shreds by the nitpickers, that weren't there but love to complain, and not create. John Wayne wanted to preserve a moment of human dignity and ferocious battle action, between 2 forces that were destined to crash in this massacre. 1 side, the Alamo defenders, were the vanguard of democracy that was spreading across the West, first with mountain men and trappers, then the fighting pioneers that were determined to continue to the Pacific, in the spirit of Daniel Boone and Lewis and Clark. And the Mexican Army was defending it's land against what it came to think, were pirates and invaders. Santa Anna was a monstrous leader who lost so much that the young Mexican Republic, barely had a chance to start, after getting the Spanish out after hundreds of years. John Wayne bet everything on his values, American values - instilled in him on the prairies of Iowa, where he still heard cavalrymen and Union Army veterans, tell of a country they helped build, and passed it on to young Marion Morrison, before his family migrated to California, and his destiny to become one of the great symbols of America. By getting into the movie business, and studying at the elbow of the great rugged directors of the early years
  • Walsh, Wellman, Hathaway, Hawks and the great poet of the Western


movie - John Ford. Who passed onto Duke the great motto - When the legend becomes fact, film the legend. Which Wayne did in a gigantic fashion, with "The Alamo". By hiring the very best composer of huge western themes, mixed with stirring and heartfelt emotion -- Dimitri Tiomkin, he assured audiences of rousing background to his great cameraman, Bill Clothier's fabulous and stunning cinematography -- like dropping back into history at such a pivotal moment. And if John Wayne's effort was not flawless, step up and invest millions into your own version of that timeless story. To say he had a ton of courage, is an understatement, for those who can appreciate greatness, now luckily available to us in DVD and tape forms, to pass on to our ancestors, the work of a man dedicated, come hell or high water, to preserve his big, bold monumental vision, for all generations to come. And for Americans, and all freedom loving peoples - to respect and forever "REMEMBER THE ALAMO".


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