7.3/10
1,647
28 user 36 critic

The Iron Horse (1924)

Passed | | History, Romance, Western | 4 October 1925 (USA)
After witnessing the murder of his father by a renegade as a boy, the grown-up Brandon helps to realize his father's dream of a transcontinental railway.

Director:

John Ford (uncredited)

Writers:

Charles Kenyon (story), John Russell (story) | 2 more credits »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

1 win. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

3 Bad Men (1926)
Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Three outlaws come to the aid of a young girl after her father is killed.

Director: John Ford
Stars: George O'Brien, Olive Borden, Lou Tellegen
Tobacco Road (1941)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Hillbilly family life in 1941 rural Georgia.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Charley Grapewin, Gene Tierney, Marjorie Rambeau
Four Sons (1928)
Certificate: Passed Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A family saga in which three of a Bavarian widow's sons go to war for Germany and the fourth goes to America, Germany's eventual opponent.

Director: John Ford
Stars: James Hall, Margaret Mann, Charles Morton
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The story of Dr. Samuel Mudd, who was imprisoned after innocently treating President Lincoln's assassin in 1865.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Warner Baxter, Gloria Stuart, Claude Gillingwater
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A Louisiana con man enters his steamboat into a winner-take-all race with a rival while trying to find a witness to free his nephew, about to be hung for murder.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Will Rogers, Anne Shirley, Irvin S. Cobb
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Newlyweds Gil and Lana Martin try to establish a farm in the Mohawk Valley but are menaced by Indians and Tories as the Revolutionary War begins.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Claudette Colbert, Henry Fonda, Edna May Oliver
Adventure | Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Two wagon caravans converge at what is now Kansas City, and combine for the westward push to Oregon. On their quest the pilgrims will experience desert heat, mountain snow, hunger, and ... See full summary »

Director: James Cruze
Stars: J. Warren Kerrigan, Lois Wilson, Alan Hale
Just Pals (1920)
Comedy | Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Small-town tramp befriends runaway boy.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Buck Jones, Helen Ferguson, Georgie Stone
Wagon Master (1950)
Adventure | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Two young drifters guide a Mormon wagon train to the San Juan Valley and encounter cutthroats, Indians, geography, and moral challenges on the journey.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Ben Johnson, Joanne Dru, Harry Carey Jr.
The Informer (1935)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In 1922, an Irish rebel informs on his friend, then feels doom closing in.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Victor McLaglen, Heather Angel, Preston Foster
Judge Priest (1934)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Judge Priest, a proud Confederate veteran, uses common sense and considerable humanity to dispense justice in a small town in the Post-Bellum Kentucky.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Will Rogers, Tom Brown, Anita Louise
Certificate: Passed Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A fictionalized account of the early life of the American president as a young lawyer facing his greatest court case.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Henry Fonda, Alice Brady, Marjorie Weaver
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
George O'Brien ... Dave Brandon
Madge Bellamy ... Miriam Marsh
Charles Edward Bull Charles Edward Bull ... Lincoln
Cyril Chadwick Cyril Chadwick ... Jesson
Will Walling ... Thomas Marsh
Francis Powers Francis Powers ... Sgt. Slattery
J. Farrell MacDonald ... Cpl. Casey (as J. Farrell Macdonald)
Jim Welch Jim Welch ... Pvt. Schultz / Pvt. Mackay (as James Welch)
George Waggner George Waggner ... Buffalo Bill (as George Wagner)
Fred Kohler ... Deroux
James A. Marcus ... Judge Haller (as James Marcus)
Gladys Hulette ... Ruby
Edit

Storyline

Springfield, Illinois. Brandon, a surveyor, dreams of building a railway to the west, but Marsh, a contractor, is sceptical. Abraham Lincoln looks on as their children, Davy Brandon and Miriam Marsh, play together. Brandon sets off with Davy to survey a route. They discover a new pass which will shave 200 miles off the expected distance, but they are set upon by a party of Cheyenne. One of them, a white renegade with only two fingers on his right hand, kills Brandon and scalps him. Davy buries his father... Years pass. It is 1862 and Lincoln signs the bill authorizing construction of the Union Pacific and Central Pacific railways. Marsh is principal contractor and Miriam is engaged to Jesson, the chief engineer... Crews of Chinese, Italians, and Irish work to build the railway while resisting Indian attack. When the pay train is delayed by Indian ambush, the Italians go on strike. Miriam persuades them to return to work... Marsh needs to find a shortcut through the Black Hills. To ... Written by David Steele

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

THE WEDDING OF THE RAILS! ONE OF AMERICA'S MOST THRILLING HISTORICAL DEEDS--THE DRIVING OF THE LAST SPIKE FOR THE TRANSCONTINENTAL RAILROAD (original ad - all caps) See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 October 1925 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Iron Trail See more »

Filming Locations:

Santa Clarita, California, USA See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$280,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$942,889, 31 December 1925
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Fox Film Corporation See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TCM print)

Sound Mix:

Silent

Color:

Black and White (tinted)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The production had its own bootlegger. While doing a run one night, the bootlegger in question allegedly hit and killed someone with his car. See more »

Goofs

In some scenes at least one of the workers can be seen hitting next to the railroad spike instead of actually driving the spike into the railroad tie. See more »

Quotes

Judge Haller: Boys, this bar of justice and likker will still function when we get to Cheyenne - Let 'er go!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Making of 'The Quiet Man' (1992) See more »

Soundtracks

Blow the Man Down
(uncredited)
Traditional 19th Century Sea Chanty (1860s)
[Integrated into restoration score into divorce and going back to work scenes]
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Patriotic Early western
12 June 2005 | by Teebs2See all my reviews

Very early John Ford western, don't bother looking for John Wayne here! "The Iron Horse" tells the story of the building of the railroad across America from the East to West coasts. Of course this is a movie so we also get a romance plot, a vengeance plot, hostile Indians, corrupt officials, jovial Irishmen, nasty Indians and so forth.

Although the tone of the film is mostly pretty patriotic and upbeat, there are several darker moments that hint at the corruption and greed in business as landowners attempt to influence the route of the railroad with bribes of women and money. Sergio Leone's "Once Upon a Time in the West" amongst many other later Westerns takes this theme further. Much of the work is done by Chinese immigrants, but they all seem pretty cheerful here!

In many areas the film is inevitably dated, particularly it's comic scenes and the aforementioned treatment of racial stereotypes. There are a few landscape shots and action scenes, but none as stunning or exciting as in Ford's slightly later "Stagecoach". The 2 hour plus running time is also a little too much. However, the film does succeed in creating an overwhelming sense of achievement in the creation of the railroad, although the sense that 'Civilisation' may actually be a threat, developed in later Westerns, is already apparent with the saloon that doubles as a court of law, and a drunken judge.


7 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 28 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed