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Broken Arrow (1950)

Approved | | Drama, Romance, Western | August 1950 (USA)
Tom Jeffords tries to make peace between settlers and Apaches in Arizona territory.

Director:

Delmer Daves

Writers:

Elliott Arnold (novel), Albert Maltz (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
James Stewart ... Tom Jeffords
Jeff Chandler ... Cochise
Debra Paget ... Sonseeahray
Basil Ruysdael ... Gen. Oliver Howard
Will Geer ... Ben Slade
Joyce Mackenzie ... Terry (as Joyce MacKenzie)
Arthur Hunnicutt ... Milt Duffield
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Storyline

By 1870, there has been 10 years of cruel war between settlers and Cochise's Apaches. Ex-soldier Tom Jeffords saves the life of an Apache boy and starts to wonder if Indians are human, after all; soon, he determines to use this chance to make himself an ambassador. Against all odds, his solitary mission into Cochise's stronghold opens a dialogue. Opportunely, the president sends General Howard with orders to conclude peace. But even with Jeffords's luck, the deep grievance and hatred on both sides make tragic failure all too likely. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Of this motion picture the screen can be proud... Today... Tomorrow... A generation from now...

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Release Date:

August 1950 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Blood Brothers See more »

Filming Locations:

Sonoran Desert, Arizona, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie's world premiere was held in the Nusho Theater in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. See more »

Goofs

At 17:30 as a renegade climbs a rope the safety rope is clearly visible. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[opening narration]
Tom Jeffords: This is the story of a land, of the people who lived on it in the year 1870, and of a man whose name was Cochise. He was an Indian - leader of the Chiricahua Apache tribe. I was involved in the story and what I have to tell happened exactly as you'll see it - the only change will be that when the Apaches speak, they will speak in our language. What took place is part of the history of Arizona and it began for me here where you see me riding.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Northern Exposure: Duets (1993) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Poetic,elegiac,wonderful.
1 July 2003 | by dbdumonteilSee all my reviews

The movie is in the past conditional,because we know the real end of the story and Delmer Daves who had been studying the Indians ways for a long time did not try to fool the audience:"broken arrow" is not a nice "peace and love" movie:there are plenty of death,violence and hatred here ,more than in the average western.As Cochise says,living in peace is more difficult than waging war.But Jeffords and him become legendary figures whom we can still meet today everywhere in the world,peace on earth and good will to men .Thus his story becomes universal.

There's a wistful,not to say very sad side:Delmer Daves is like John Lennon singing "imagine" or Neil Young singing "Pocahontas" (I wish I was a trapper/I would give a thousand pelts/To sleep with Pocahontas/And find out how she felt/In the morning in the fields of green/in the home land we've never seen):he does know that all these promises are illusive ,the two protagonists trust each other,but who else can they trust?The dice are loaded from the start.

That's why the love scenes are so important and among the most visually astounding we can see in a western.Thanks partly to Debra Paget's breathtaking beauty,the scenes between Jeffords and Sonseearhay climax the movie.They give the audience a taste of a lost paradise "the homeland we've never seen":Jefford's dream only really comes true in these sequences where the lovers are under the "big sky" in communion with nature.

Some will complain because everybody speaks English,but Tom's voice-over warns us from the very start.Kevin Costner,who makes his Oscar-winning "dance with wolves" in the early nineties ,owes a good deal to Delmer Daves.


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