Quintessential John Wayne western, the Duke plays tough but principled cavalry scout Hondo Lane who ends up sparking the widow (Geraldine Page) of a blackguard whom he was forced to shoot. In the meantime, the Apache are on the warpath, the horse soldiers are being led by a callow Westpointer (Tom Irish), and Vittoro (Michael Pate), the renegade Indian war-chief, has taken a shine to the widow's young son. Fortunately, all of these problems can be solved by honesty, common sense, good horsemanship, and/or a Winchester. Wayne is as good as always playing his usual larger-than-life hero and Page, refreshingly lacking the 'starlet' good looks usually found in supporting female characters, is excellent as the abandoned pioneer mother. The rest of the cast are fine, Australian actor Michael Pate plays Vittoro (presumably a proxy for the actual Apache chief Victorio (1825-1880)) and Wayne's buddies Ward Bond and James Arness are along for the ride as a couple of colourful cavalry scouts. The film is a bit more nuanced than the usual oater and the Apache, while still implacable foes who take scalps and torture prisoners, are presented as a rightfully aggrieved party, having been lied to and betrayed by the 'whiteman'. The desert cinematography is excellent and although originally presented in 3D, there are few of the gimmicky 'coming at you' shots that were common in early 3D films (I recently watched a 'flat' version but still have my 3D 'Hondo glasses' from a previous viewing). The climactic battle, allegedly directed by John Ford, is excellent but the film ends on a sombre 'end of an era' note, a theme that was becoming more common in the genre. All in all, Hondo is an impressive oater starring one of the genre's greats at the top of his game - well worth watching.