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Rio Grande [Blu-ray]

John Wayne , Maureen O'Hara , John Ford    Unrated   Blu-ray
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 29.95
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Rio Grande [Blu-ray] + Rio Lobo (Blu Ray) [Blu-ray] (Bilingual) + Fort Apache [Blu-ray]
Price For All Three: CDN$ 65.97



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The last and least memorable of John Ford's famous cavalry trilogy (following Fort Apache and She Wore a Yellow Ribbon), Rio Grande nonetheless has an interesting continuity about the gentlemanly rules of military conduct. Here the focus is on the family. While creating a heated controversy over his handling of the Apache war, John Wayne must also contend with disgruntled wife Maureen O'Hara and estranged son Claude Jarman Jr., a new recruit trying to earn his father's love and respect. Ford seems to suggest that there are two conflicting codes of honor in every cavalry officer's life, the personal as well as the professional, and that it takes an act of heroism to maintain both. It's fascinating to observe Wayne's progression throughout the trilogy, as his personal stakes intensify. Also, this is the first of five onscreen appearances between the Duke and O'Hara, each filled with a competitive spirit and stormy sexuality. --Bill Desowitz

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Trilogy Completed Sept. 5 2003
By Robert Morris HALL OF FAME TOP 10 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
This is the third of Ford's films which focus on the U.S. Cavalry and its violent encounters with the Apache. Wayne's role in each is quite different. He is a subordinate officer in Fort Apache, a commanding officer about to retire in She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, and again a commanding officer in this film but estranged from his wife Kathleen (Maureen O'Hara), and son Jeff (Claude Jarman, Jr.) among the men he commands. Lieutenant Kirby Yorke (Wayne) resembles Woodrow F. Call in Lonesome Dove (played by Tommy Lee Jones) who refuses to show any favoritism or even affection whatsoever to his son. (In fact, Call denies his fatherhood.) Of course, Ford ensures that husband and wife are reunited by the end of the film; also, that father and son become close after Trooper Yorke plays a key role in helping to rescue children captured by the Apache and thereby earns his commanding officer's (and father's) respect. A similar relationship exists in Red River except that the conflict is resolved without a brawl. Personally, I would have preferred less reliance on Irish ballads, the focus on Yorke's marital conflicts, and what I view as the macho element of which Ford was so fond. Nonetheless, Wayne's performance is outstanding and the sequence by which the children is rescued is brilliantly portrayed. In additional to much improved sound and image, this DVD version also offers several excellent supplementary features which include a scene-specific commentary with Maureen O'Hara, a mini-documentary "Along the Rio Grande with Maureen O'Hara," and "The Making of Rio Grande" hosted by Leonard Maltin.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
'Rio Grande', the last of director John Ford's 'unofficial' Cavalry Trilogy, has often been unfairly judged the 'weakest' of the three westerns. Certainly, it lacks the poetic quality of 'She Wore a Yellow Ribbon', or the revisionist view of a thinly-disguised reworking of the events surrounding the death of George Armstrong Custer ('Fort Apache'), but for richness of detail, a sense of the camaraderie of cavalrymen, an 'adult' (in the best sense of the word) love story, and a symbolic 'rejoining' of North and South conclusion that may have you tapping your toe, 'Rio Grande' is hard to beat!
It is remarkable that 'Rio Grande' ever got to the screen; Ford hadn't planned to make it, but in order to get Republic Pictures to agree to his demands for 'The Quiet Man' (he wanted the film to be shot on location in Ireland, and in color), he had to agree to do a 'quickie' western that would turn a quick profit for the usually cash-strapped studio. This is, perhaps, a reason why the film is held in less esteem than it deserves. 'Rio Grande' may have not been born with high expectations, but with John Ford in the director's chair, and John Wayne and the Ford 'family' in the cast and crew, the potential for something 'special' was ALWAYS present!
A few bits of trivia to enhance your viewing pleasure: Yes, that IS Ken Curtis, singing with The Sons of the Pioneers, in the film...while uncredited, he made a favorable impression with Ford, and soon became a part of his 'family'...
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5.0 out of 5 stars "Rio Grande" April 22 2001
Format:DVD
This film marks the first of five films that John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara made together. Once John Ford got a somewhat reluctant Republic mogul Herbert Yates to agree to produce his long-time dream "The Quiet Man" - Yates added a "condition." That condition was that the same team, Maureen O'Hara, Duke Wayne, do a western film first, to make up for the money he anticipated 'losing' on "The Quiet Man."
Yates must have had to eat a lot of crow because not only was "Rio Grande" a box office success, but "The Quiet Man" went on to become an all-time classic masterpiece. "Rio Grande" is an exceptionally wonderful film, and I feel is equal to "The Quiet Man" in it's own genre (Calvalry/western). It is romantic, sensitive, full of action, and everything you would expect from hero John Wayne...and his lovely lady, Maureen O'Hara - plus a happy ending.
This is a subject close to my heart because I maintain a website on Ms. O'Hara and have interviewed her, as well as many of her peers, including Harry Carey, Jr., Anna Lee and John Agar. The chemistry of O'Hara and Wayne in itself is an interesting study and long underrated by Hollywood historians....
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5.0 out of 5 stars Ford at his best Dec 10 2000
John Ford's treatment of the American Army is without peer. He looks at the role of the cavalry and presents an exceptional portrayal of life in this branch of the service in the 1870s. Rio Grande, the last of three pictures dealing with the cavalry made in the 1940s, is the high point of this series.
John Ford has a cast of charecters that is hard to beat, starting with John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara and moving on to the standard issue cast of supporting charecters. Ford also examines the issues of why the Cavalry is where it is and does an excellent job there too.
This is the Army not on the edge of civilization, but beyond it as was known in the 1870s. Even on the best of days, privation was there at these small posts. You also see family life to a degree not seen in other films. I mean the family life of the soldiers, not the hero. The opening scenes with the troop coming back into the post and the wives gathered by the gate to see if their husband is returning upright or not, and then those who find thier husbnads on stretchers walking along with them. This to me, sets the tone of the movie. One of the most moving scenes I felt was of a corporal saying goodbye to his wife as the families are evacuated and making sure she has enough money and later this same man wants to be with his wife when her body is found. He asks permission to go to her but Wayne denies it and explains why. The emotion is palpable and heartfelt. It is a scene that Ford works to perfection without being overly emotional and exploiting the moment.
The outdoor scenes are excellent and in keeping with Ford's love of vistas.
This under rated film is actually a classic in it's treatment of the whole fabric of Army life in the west, the privation, the boredom and terror, the dangers and simple pleasures. This film hs it all and is the better for it.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Movie
Love John Wayne. All his movies are great. This is a true classic. Watched it many times on VHS mike
Published 4 months ago by michael eaton
3.0 out of 5 stars Read the listing more carefully !
I,ve never heard of a Blu-ray in black & white format !! Although the movie itself was great I returned it for credit and will purchase a colour version .
Published 5 months ago by Gerhard J Rosenow
5.0 out of 5 stars The last of the three
If you enjoy the early westerns produced by John Ford and starring John Wayne then you will want to purchase this. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Ladybird
4.0 out of 5 stars THE TRILOGY'S SUNSET RIDE
RIO GRANDE nicely finishes off the John Ford Cavalry Trilogy. While not as intense as FORT APACHE, or touching as SHE WORE A YELLOW RIBBON, RIO GRANDE earns its stripes with the... Read more
Published on July 17 2004 by Gregory Saffady
5.0 out of 5 stars Great film!
Maureen O'Hara and John Wayne definitly have great chemistry in this film, and are a very romantic couple. It's well worth seeing, adventure, romance, and drama.
Published on Feb. 14 2003 by Rosella Ann Myles
2.0 out of 5 stars Sorely disappointed
After reading all of the glorious reviews of this movie, which led to my getting it, I feel bad about panning it but thumbs down on this one. Read more
Published on Jan. 29 2003 by Puff Kitty
5.0 out of 5 stars New 50th Anniversary Edition "Rio Grande" O'Hara commentary
...Producer/Director Michael Gillis is to be applauded for finally gave us a special of edition of these films with Maureen O'Hara given free reign in detailed commentary. Read more
Published on Oct. 27 2002 by June Beck
5.0 out of 5 stars Rio Grandé - More than "interesting"
"Rio Grande," although it fell into the "trilogy" label, it was made to satisfy Herbert Yates, the head of Republic Studios. Read more
Published on Oct. 5 2002 by June Beck
4.0 out of 5 stars First in the Trilogy
This has been the hardest to find of John Ford's cavalry trilogy, but that's because it is the first, not the last as identified in the Amazon review. Read more
Published on Aug. 9 2002 by Hank Ford
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best of The Trilogy
To me this is the most enjoyable of the Ford-Wayne western trilogy. It has a more human story & great chemistry between Wayne & O'Hara. Read more
Published on March 28 2002
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