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Rio Grande (1950)

Passed | | Romance, Western | 15 November 1950 (USA)
A cavalry officer posted on the Rio Grande must deal with murderous raiding Apaches, his son who's a risk-taking recruit and his wife from whom he has been separated for many years.

Director:

John Ford

Writers:

James Kevin McGuinness (screenplay), James Warner Bellah (Saturday Evening Post story)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Wayne ... Lt. Col. Kirby Yorke
Maureen O'Hara ... Mrs. Kathleen Yorke
Ben Johnson ... Trooper Travis Tyree
Claude Jarman Jr. ... Trooper Jefferson 'Jeff' Yorke
Harry Carey Jr. ... Trooper Daniel 'Sandy' Boone
Chill Wills ... Dr. Wilkins (regimental surgeon)
J. Carrol Naish ... Lt. Gen. Philip Sheridan
Victor McLaglen ... Sgt. Maj. Timothy Quincannon
Grant Withers ... U.S. Deputy Marshal
Sons of the Pioneers ... Regimental Musicians (as Sons Of The Pioneers)
Peter Ortiz Peter Ortiz ... Capt. St. Jacques
Steve Pendleton ... Capt. Prescott
Karolyn Grimes ... Margaret Mary
Alberto Morin ... Lieutenant
Stan Jones Stan Jones ... Sergeant
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Storyline

Rio Grande takes place after the Civil War when the Union turned their attention towards the Apaches. Union officer Kirby Yorke is in charge of an outpost on the Rio Grande in which he is in charge of training of new recruits one of which is his son whom he hasn't seen in 15 years. He whips him into shape to take on the Apaches but not before his mother shows up to take him out of there.The decision to leave is left up to Trooper Yorke who decides to stay and fight. Through it all Kirby and Kathleen though separated for years fall back into love and decide that it's time to give it another try. But Yorke faces his toughest battle when his unorthodox plan to outwit the elusive Apaches leads to possible court- martial. Locked in a bloody Indian war, he must fight to redeem his honor and save the love and lives of his broken family Written by Christopher D. Ryan <cryan@direct.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

John Ford's Most Powerful Drama. The Breathtaking Saga of the United States Cavalry! See more »

Genres:

Romance | Western

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 November 1950 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

John Ford and Merian C. Cooper's Rio Grande See more »

Filming Locations:

Kayenta, Arizona, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,214,899 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Often described as John Ford's last cavalry Western, as The Horse Soldiers (1959) was a Civil War drama. See more »

Goofs

When Recall is sounded after the children are rescued you hear the call blown, then it stops. The horn is still being blown after the call stops. See more »

Quotes

Lt. Col. Kirby York: Any liquor in this village?
Trooper Travis Tyree: Mucho tequila. They were slugging it down copious like when I left.
Lt. Col. Kirby York: Drums? Singing?
Trooper Travis Tyree: Yes, sir.
Lt. Col. Kirby York: Vengeance dance. They'll dance until dawn.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Also available in a computer colorized version. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: Sons and Daughters (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Low Bridge (Fifteen Miles On the Erie Canal)
(uncredited)
Written by Thomas S. Allen
Performed by the Sons of the Pioneers
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
"Trooper Yorke brought the word, we came as soon as we could."
17 August 2005 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

According to a trailer on my Quiet Man VHS and Maureen O'Hara's memoirs Rio Grande was a negotiating chip that Republic Pictures studio president Herbert J. Yates used in order to get John Ford to work for his studio. John Ford had wanted to make The Quiet Man for years and the major studios turned him down. Republic was the last stop he made. Yates agreed to let him shoot The Quiet Man at Republic, but first he wanted a guaranteed moneymaker.

Fort Apache and She Wore A Yellow Ribbon were both done at RKO and made money. So Yates said give me another cavalry picture with John Wayne and you can shoot The Quiet Man afterwards.

James Warner Bellah who had written the short stories that the other two were based on fortunately had a third one published. And that boys and girls is how Rio Grande came into being.

Good thing too because of studio politics we got ourselves a western classic. And a family classic as well. John Wayne who is once again playing a character named Kirby Yorke has two families, the United States Cavalry to which he's devoted and a wife and son from whom he's been estranged. How he repairs the relationships between wife Maureen O'Hara and son Claude Jarman, Jr. is the key to the whole story.

As Maureen toasts at a dinner scene with J. Carrol Naish as General Philip H. Sheridan, "to my one rival, the United States Cavalry."

Young Jefferson Yorke has flunked out of West Point and has joined the army as an enlisted man. Through none of his own doing he's assigned to the frontier post commanded by his father. Mom then comes west to try and spring him from the army, but young Jeff doesn't want to be sprung.

In fact to his father's surprise the young man proves himself to be an able cavalryman without any assistance from Dad. And when Maureen comes west, old love rekindles between Wayne and O'Hara.

All this is against the background of some Apache hit and run raids across the Rio Grande. Topped off by them attacking a party escorting dependent women and children away from the post. Young Trooper Yorke rides for help there, hence the title quote.

A lot of John Ford's stock company fills out the cast to give it that familiar look of Ford films. Some bits from previous films were used like the training Roman style of the new recruits. They prove a more able bunch than the ones from Fort Apache.

Some traditional melodies were used as they are in John Ford period pieces, but unusual for a Ford film, several new songs were written for the film, done by the Sons of the Pioneers. One of them written by Dale Evans entitled Aha San Antone. She was employed at Republic studios also.

A fine classic western with a nice story about family relationships and responsibilities one incurs in life.


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