Stagecoach

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Overview

Although there were Westerns before it, Stagecoach quickly became a template for all movie Westerns to come. Director John Ford combined action, drama, humor, and a set of well-drawn characters in the story of a stagecoach set to leave Tonto, New Mexico for a distant settlement in Lordsburg, with a diverse set of passengers on board. Dallas Claire Trevor is a woman with a scandalous past who has been driven out of town by the high-minded ladies of the community. Lucy Mallory Louise Platt is the wife of a cavalry ...
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Overview

Although there were Westerns before it, Stagecoach quickly became a template for all movie Westerns to come. Director John Ford combined action, drama, humor, and a set of well-drawn characters in the story of a stagecoach set to leave Tonto, New Mexico for a distant settlement in Lordsburg, with a diverse set of passengers on board. Dallas Claire Trevor is a woman with a scandalous past who has been driven out of town by the high-minded ladies of the community. Lucy Mallory Louise Platt is the wife of a cavalry officer stationed in Lordsburg, and she's determined to be with him. Hatfield John Carradine is a smooth-talking cardsharp who claims to be along to "protect" Lucy, although he seems to have romantic intentions. Dr. Boone Thomas Mitchell is a self-styled philosopher, a drunkard, and a physician who's been stripped of his license. Mr. Peacock Donald Meek is a slightly nervous whiskey salesman and, not surprisingly, Dr. Boone's new best friend. Gatewood Berton Churchill is a crooked banker who needs to get out of town. Buck Andy Devine is the hayseed stage driver, and Sheriff Wilcox George Bancroft is along to offer protection and keep an eye peeled for the Ringo Kid John Wayne, a well-known outlaw who has just broken out of jail. While Wilcox does find Ringo, a principled man who gives himself up without a fight, the real danger lies farther down the trail, where a band of Apaches, led by Geronimo, could attack at any time. Stagecoach offers plenty of cowboys, Indians, shootouts, and chases, aided by Yakima Canutt's remarkable stunt work and Bert Glennon's majestic photography of Ford's beloved Monument Valley. It also offers a strong screenplay by Dudley Nichols with plenty of room for the cast to show its stuff. John Wayne's performance made him a star after years as a B-Western leading man, and Thomas Mitchell won an Oscar for what could have been just another comic relief role. Thousands of films have followed Stagecoach's path, but no has ever improved on its formula.
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Special Features

Closed Caption; Commentary by Scott Eyman, author of Print the Legend: The Life and Times of John Ford; Theatrical trailer
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Lucia Bozzola
Relegated to B-movie status by the mid-1930s, the western was regenerated most prominently by John Ford's Stagecoach in 1939. Ford and screenwriter Dudley Nichols artfully balanced the genre's standard action with the character studies and quality production values of prestigious 1930s films. In the microcosm of the stagecoach, the confrontation between "civilization" and "savagery," Western future and Eastern past, is played out among characters journeying through hostile Apache territory, with honor-bound outlaw Ringo fighting valiantly for a society that shuns him. Though not the top-billed player, and then a B-movie actor, John Wayne as Ringo became the star hero from the moment that Ford introduces him with a rare kinetic flourish. Ford here introduced his signature Western setting of Monument Valley, lending Stagecoach a realism that set it apart from studio-bound films; and his deep focus interiors preceded Citizen Kane by two years. A critical and commercial hit, Stagecoach helped spearhead the revival of the Western as a viable A-feature, and it turned Wayne into an A-list star. When he made Citizen Kane, Orson Welles claimed that he learned everything about directing movies from watching Stagecoach more than 40 times.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/2/2007
  • UPC: 085391158660
  • Original Release: 1939
  • Rating:

  • Source: Warner Home Video
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Black & White
  • Sound: Dolby Digital Mono
  • Language: English
  • Time: 1:36:00
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Claire Trevor Dallas
John Wayne The Ringo Kid
Andy Devine Buck Rickabaugh
Thomas Mitchell Doc Boone
George Bancroft Sheriff Curly Wilcox
John Carradine Hatfield
Louise Platt Lucy Mallory
Donald Meek Samuel Peacock
Berton Churchill Henry Gatewood
Tim Holt Lt. Blanchard
Elvira Rios Yakima, Chris's Wife
Francis Ford Billy Pickett
Florence Lake Mrs. Nancy Whitney
Walter McGrail Capt. Sickle
Paul McVey Express Agent
Brenda Fowler Mrs. Gatewood
Yakima Canutt Cavalry Scout
Bryant Washburn Cavalry Captain
Duke Lee Sheriff of Lordsburg
Tom Tyler Luke Plummer
Dorothy Appleby Dancing Girl
Ted Billings
Fritzi Brunette
Steve Clemente
Patsy Doyle
Tex Driscoll
Helen Gibson
Louis Mason Sheriff
Margaret Smith
Patrick Wayne
Marga Ann Deighton Mrs. Pickett
Leonard Trainor
Chief John Big Tree Indian Scout
Ed Brady Owner of Saloon
Nora Cecil Landlady of Doc
Bill Cody Rancher
William Hopper Sergeant
Si Jenks Bartender
Cornelius Keefe Capt. Whitney
Theodore Lorch Express Agent in Lordsburg
Chris-Pin Martin Chris
Kent Odell Billy Pickett, Jr.
Artie Ortega Bar Patron in Lordsburg
Vester Pegg Hank Plummer
Jack Pennick Jerry the Bartender
Joe Rickson Ike Plummer
Buddy Roosevelt Rancher
Harry Tenbrook Telegraph Operator
Hank Worden Cavalryman
Franklin Farnum Deputy
Robert E. Homans Editor in Lordsburg
Jim Mason Jim
Merrill McCormick Ogler
Technical Credits
John Ford Director, Producer
R.O. Binger Special Effects
Yakima Canutt Stunts
Gerard Carbonara Score Composer
Bert Glennon Cinematographer
Louis Gruenberg Score Composer
Richard Hageman Score Composer
W. Franke Harling Score Composer
Wiard Ihnen Set Decoration/Design
John Leipold Score Composer
Otho Lovering Editor
Frank Maher Sound/Sound Designer
Boris Morros Musical Direction/Supervision
Dudley Nichols Screenwriter
Walter Plunkett Costumes/Costume Designer
Walter Reynolds Editor
Leo Shuken Score Composer
Wingate Smith Asst. Director
Dorothy Spencer Editor
Max Steiner Score Composer
Alexander Toluboff Art Director
Walter Wanger Producer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Stagecoach
1. Credits; Trouble Near Lordsburg [2:30]
2. Tonto [3:01]
3. Victims of Social Prejudice [3:16]
4. All Aboard - And Duly Warned [5:08]
5. Wide-Open Spaces [3:51]
6. Ringo Kid; Getting Acquainted [5:11]
7. Dry Fork; Opposite Ends [12:06]
8. Water For the Ladies; Cold Vigil [4:32]
9. Apache Wells: Into Labor [7:40]
10. The Baby Arrives [2:37]
11. Strays in the Night [3:40]
12. Recovering and Romancing [5:58]
13. Just Can't Run Away [2:33]
14. Options and Smoke Signals [3:39]
15. Crossing the River [3:11]
16. Watchful Apache Eyes [:28]
17. The Attack [2:36]
18. Surrounded [3:40]
19. Cavalry Charge [2:19]
20. Lordsburg: Dead Man's Hand [3:35]
21. Curley's Promise [8:42]
22. Bracing For a Showdown [1:21]
23. Gunfire [1:25]
24. Saved From Civilization's Blessings [2:05]
25. Cast List [:39]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Stagecoach
   Play Movie
   Scene Selections
   Special Features
      Commentary by Scott Eyman
      Theatrical Trailer
   Languages
      Spoken Languages: English
      Subtitles: English
      Subtitles: Español
      Subtitles: Français
      Subtitles: Off
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 20 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 20 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 22, 2011

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    Superb Restoration of A Classic Film

    Criterion's Blu-ray/DVD release of John Ford's classic western is by far the best transfer available, miles ahead of Warner's release of several years ago. The overall picture is sharper, contrast is excellent and the sound blows the previous releases out of the water. The restoration work done on this film is exemplary, and those who complain about imperfections and scratches found in this new transfer are missing the point: This edition has a great film-like texture and those who worked on this restoration decided to keep some imperfections in the new print as opposed to "cleaning it up", the result being that "Stagecoach" looks as it's supposed to look : a real film. As for the movie, 70 plus years has not dimmed this production's superb attributes: brilliant direction, great ensemble acting, an involving story, beautifully lit interiors , magnificent outdoor cinematography (highlighting Director Ford's beloved Monument Valley) and a stirring music score. Released in 1939, that golden year of Hollywood classics, "Stagecoach" deserves its landmark status as the first truly great sound western.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 22, 2012

    Me likeded ta wach tha hursey hippity ta me nort

    Me likeded ta wach tha hursey hippity ta me nort

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  • Posted June 10, 2011

    Simply one of the best films ever

    You probably already know that this is the film that made John Wayne a star. And John Wayne fans will love it. It's a seminal Western. But Stagecoach also offers drop-dead beautiful visuals, deftly drawn characters and a suspenseful conclusion. There's a reason director John Ford is known as one of cinema's greats!

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  • Posted November 10, 2010

    Great film

    Saw this over the weekend, was so captivated by it. The BD looks incredible, Looked better that what I was expecting.. Loved seeing John Wayne in his first Western. I birth of a Legend... This is defenitly a must own!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    John Ford and John Wayne from the beginning.

    What can I possibly say that hasn't been said a thousand times before about this film. It is historical. In its simplicity, the West and all of the diverse characters are brought to life as only Ford could do. The majestic backdrop of the grandeur of Monument Valley was the icing on the cake. The likes of this kind of cinematography is indeed the foundation for the success of all subsequent films. It has the Academy Awards to prove it.

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

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    Stagecoach - the DVD

    John Wayne, what more needs to be said?

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