Friday, July 15, 2011

John Ford/John Wayne: The Filmmaker and the Legend

Director John Ford and actor John Wayne were two titans of the film industry and their complicated partnership led to a rich body of work that encompassed much of who we are as Americans. Ford was an up and coming director in the 1920s when he discovered a striking B-movie actor named Marion Morrison, whom he asked to be in his pictures. Morrison changed his name to John Wayne and that was the start of their working relationship which over the years would see differences regarding work, politics, and stances on World War II. They would also craft some of the finest American films including Stagecoach, Fort Apache, The Searchers, and The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance. John Ford/John Wayne: The Filmmaker and the Legend is a wonderful documentary which includes interviews family, friends, and collaborators of both men, as well as experts including Martin Scorsese, Peter Bogdanovich, and Richard Schickel. From an honest and personal portrait, we learn about the lives of both men and their wonderful contributions to the world of cinema.