John Wayne film recommendations?

Mitty

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He made close to 200 films, so your list may be long, but my personal favourites, and a good place to start, are:
Stagecoach - the film that made him a star
Red River
The Searchers
Rio Bravo
The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
 

Brad_W

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I'm not a John Wayne fan, but I think there is a box set or two on DVD that you could pick up and enjoy. I know there are Clint Eastwood box sets. Just an idea.
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Rain

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All of the previous films mentioned are great. I would also personally recommend They Were Expendable (not a Western).
Some others that I have not personally seen, but that have a good reputation among film lovers:
The Shootist
True Grit
The Longest Day
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Rich Malloy

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If you haven't seen it yet, then you need to see THE SEARCHERS. It's one of Wayne's greatest roles and one of Ford's greatest films.
 

Marty M

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A couple of more Westerns to consider are McLintock and North to Alaska. For WW II movies I recommend The Sands of Iwa Jima amd They Were Expendable
 

Peter M Fitzgerald

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I'd recommend (many of these already mentioned)...
Directed by John Ford:
THE QUIET MAN
THE SEARCHERS
THE MAN WHO SHOT LIBERTY VALANCE
STAGECOACH
THREE GODFATHERS ('48)
FORT APACHE
SHE WORE A YELLOW RIBBON
RIO GRANDE
THEY WERE EXPENDABLE
DONOVAN'S REEF
Directed by Howard Hawks:
RED RIVER
RIO BRAVO
HATARI!
Miscellaneous highlights:
THE ANGEL & THE BADMAN
LADY TAKES A CHANCE
TRUE GRIT
THE SONS OF KATIE ELDER
THE LONGEST DAY
NORTH TO ALASKA
MCCLINTOCK!
THE SHOOTIST
HONDO (not currently available, due to restoration/legal issues)
THE HIGH & THE MIGHTY (ditto)
 

george kaplan

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It depends a lot on your tastes. I love a lot of westerns (Butch Cassidy, Magnificent Seven, Good Bad Ugly, etc.), but for some reason don't like John Wayne westerns (I've seen a lot, but not all of his westerns, but haven't really liked any).
The only film of his I have liked is Hatari. So that's my recommendation.
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Tom-G

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I recommend True Grit. I'm not a big John Wayne fan, but that movie is terrific. One that I'm sure you will enjoy.
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Dome Vongvises

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I've seen quite a number of John Wayne films, and I'll even take up the recommendations here as well. But for yourself, I'd like to add some plot synopsis' so you can get the basic gist of what all these movies are all about.
Stagecoach
- It's about the journey of a stagecoach through Apache territory. Lots of characters, the degree of suspense is excellent, and the action sequences are pretty good for its time.
The Searchers
- It's supposedly the greatest western ever made. The title pretty much says it all about the plot. The movie is beautifully shot, and it's one of the few times that John Wayne isn't portrayed as the perfect hero. I liked it, but I'm not quite sure if it is indeed the greatest western ever made (I've liked others better, and I still have yet to see My Darling Clementine).
True Grit
- Girl hires a sheriff to hunt down bad guys. That may sound simple, but the greatest appeal about this movie is that this movie proves that John Wayne is a badass.
The Alamo
- Title is pretty self-explanatory. This is my favorite one of the bunch.
The Cowboys
- It's about cattle-herding and trekking across the great wide open plains. John Wayne teaches a bunch of kids (hence cowboys) to herd cattle.
Rio Bravo
- As cheesy as many Gen-Xer's would like you to believe this movie is, it's still pretty good. It's about a sheriff holding a man prisoner until a marshall can arrive. Dean Martin was a surprise in this.
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Larry Schneider

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John Wayne made a bunch of really cheapo westerns before his first big hit, Stagecoach. Skip those. Any of his later films are worth a look.
Of course, in these fervidly patriotic times you definitely should check out The Green Berets.
 

Ken_McAlinden

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I could go on and on, but my five favorites are:
  • The Quiet Man
  • The Searchers
  • Rio Bravo
  • She Wore a Yellow Ribbon
  • Red River
All of these but She Wore a Yellow Ribbon are on DVD in Region 1. I also like The Long Voyage Home a whole lot, but it is more of an ensemble piece than a John Wayne Vehicle.
Aside from these, you really can't go wrong with any of his films directed by John Ford or Howard Hawks with the possible exception of Rio Lobo, which I have yet to see, but have heard was not too good.
The Cowboys is probably my least favorite of his films for reasons that I can't go into without divulging spoilers, but it certainly has its fans and features good performances.
Regards,
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Livonia, MI USA
[Edited last by Ken_McAlinden on September 27, 2001 at 04:07 PM]
 

Eric Howell

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Not a John Wayne or Western fan, but The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance is one of my favorite movies of all time.
 

alan halvorson

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One of John Wayne's early westerns, The Big Trail, was one of the few widescreen films (1930!) released in the thirties. It's a pretty decent film but far from top drawer Wayne. It shows up once in a very great while on AMC, letterboxed.
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KevinW

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A couple of people mentioned The Quiet Man, which is my favorite John Wayne movie, and one of my all-time favs, regardless of cast or genre. However, it might not be the type of role your looking for in a John Wayne movie, but definately check it out!
If you really want the tough as nails, take no shit John Wayne, then I also second The Searchers. Beautifully shot and directed. IMO and many others it is Ford and Wayne's best.
 

Ernest Aguayo

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Guys, this is really fantastic. Thanks for all these great recommendations!!
I'll check 'em out.
Ernest
 

Duncan Jones

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Westerns. The Sons of Katie Elder, True Grit-Wayne won a Oscar with this film, El Dorado-good sequal to Rio Brave,The War Waggon, Chisum, Fort Apache, She Wore a Yellow Ribon, Rio Grande, Rio Lobo, How The West Was Won, Hondo.
Action. Brannigan, McQ, Cahill US Marshall.
War films.Flying Tigers, The Fighting SeaBees, Operation Pacific, Flying Leathernecks,
Avoid like the plague The Barbarian and the Geisha and The Greatest Story Ever Told John Wayne was misscast in these films.
 

alan halvorson

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So, did everyone watch The Big Trail (1930!) in widescreen on TCM on Tuesday evening?
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They're coming to take me away, ha-haaa!!
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Phil Florian

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Glad someone mentioned El Dorado. This is my personal fave of the Duke. I have memories of enjoying The Green Berets, too, but I am scared to watch it again. I just remember "hey, Mr. Sulu is in it!" and thought it must be good. Didn't know that El Dorado is sequel to Rio Bravo! Thanks, Pilgrim.
Phil
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