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Sergeant Rutledge (1960)

Approved | | Western, Crime | 18 May 1960 (USA)
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Respected black cavalry Sergeant Brax Rutledge stands court-martial for raping and killing a white woman and murdering her father, his superior officer.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Lt. Tom Cantrell
...
Mary Beecher
...
Mrs. Cordelia Fosgate
...
Juano Hernandez ...
Sgt. Matthew Luke Skidmore
...
Col. Otis Fosgate
...
Capt. Shattuck
Judson Pratt ...
Lt. Mulqueen
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Storyline

Lieutenant Tom Cantrell is sent to defend Sergeant Braxton Rutledge, a black cavalry soldier, on a charge of rape and murder. The story begins in a courtroom and it is told through flashbacks. This is a story of how a black soldier in the face of danger from the Indians can be so easily mistaken as a criminal. Written by Christopher D. Ryan <cryan@direct.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

THERE'S NO TURNING BACK! (original print media ad - all caps) See more »

Genres:

Western | Crime

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

18 May 1960 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Captain Buffalo  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Lt. Cantrell supplies Mary Beecher with a somewhat sanitized albeit understandable explanation of the term "buffalo soldier," stating that plains Indians applied the term to African-American soldiers upon seeing them in buffalo-hide coats and hats. In reality the relationship between black troopers and the American bison was owing to the nature of the troopers' hair, whose appearance and consistency reminded them of the shaggy capes of the plains animals. No racism was conveyed in the term, as the Indians held the bison as sacred and the perceived kinship between black troopers and the bison caused the Indians to both respect and fear the troopers. See more »

Goofs

The character of 1st Sgt. Rutledge says the Apache are Mescalero. This story is set in Arizona and the Mescalero are and have always been a New Mexico people. See more »

Quotes

[On horseback, Lieutenant Cantrell and some of his officers are escorting Mary Beecher to her home. Rutledge, handcuffed and still wounded from gunfire in his side, rides in the front alongside Cantrell]
Lt. Tom Cantrell: How's the side holding up, Sergeant?
1st Sgt. Braxton Rutledge: [sardonically] You know what they say about us, sir. We heal fast.
Lt. Tom Cantrell: You give me your word you won't try to make an escape, I'll take those irons off you.
1st Sgt. Braxton Rutledge: [Rutledge refuses to look at Cantrell] I can't do that, sir. 'Cause I ain't going back to stand trial.
Lt. Tom Cantrell: Well,...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Featured in Big Guns Talk: The Story of the Western (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Captain Buffalo
Words and Music by Mack David and Jerry Livingston
See more »

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User Reviews

A great underrated film
23 September 1999 | by (Paddington, Brisbane, Australia) – See all my reviews

John Ford, ever the director of the under dog creates another masterpiece of forgotten American history.

Ford, who called himself a social democrat creates another film of nobility and personal convictions, both his and his characters. It is Fords great humanity and sense of justice which makes this film so appealing.

Some of the narrative is forced and the resolution is pat. What we do have is Fords beautiful colour camera in Monument Valley, ala "The Searchers ( 1956 )", broad humour, defined characterizations and attention to detail both individual and historical.

Jeffrey Hunter, always an underrated actor, is fine as the lead, but it is Woody Strode as the title character that is a stand out. His courtroom scene defending his beliefs and humanity is truly moving as is his scene as he rides back to save his troop. A " man mountain" he is ! Through his physical presence Ford coaxes out subtle nuances of character which give the role a ring of truth. Supporting him we have Fords usual wonderful stock players. Although not as poetic or thought out as some of Fords other films this is still miles ahead of other peoples efforts.


21 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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