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The Searchers (1956)

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NOTE: This commentary is available as part of the 50th Anniversary Edition as well as the Ultimate Collector's Edition.

Commentaries on this disc:

Commentary 1: Filmmaker/John Ford biographer Peter Bogdanovich Rating:8.2/10 (4 votes) [graph]Login to vote or review
Reviewed by zombking on January 20th, 2008:Find all reviews by zombking
The Searchers was not my favorite film by any means, so I probably should not be writing this review, but it is for the commentary, not the film itself.

Peter knows a lot about John Ford. Perhaps too much. He has quite a bit of information and personal anecdotes that will keep the Ford fan entertained, especially when retelling Ford's almost laid-back philosophy regarding some of the action sequences and comic relief. Still, PB can drag on about certain events that matter little in relation to what we're seeing and his voice is already so monotone that it makes me wonder whether I'm listening to a commentary by HAL 9000 (a great idea! HAL on 2001! "It was a pleasure working with Gary in this scene, but I found it necessary to eliminate...")
Reviewed by Uniblab on August 6th, 2013:Find all reviews by Uniblab
Unlike To Catch a Thief, an inspired commentary by Bogdanovich. On this one he chooses to set the tone around his longtime personal admiration of John Ford and his cinema, which on one hand gives the track a kind of sponteniety not found on the average "Film Historian" commentary, but on the other makes room to some degree of pretentiousness on his part. For example, he goes out of his way to refer to the character of Wayne's sister in law as "the woman he's in love with", of course in reference to the movie's famous romantic subtext that, as such, certainly doesn't need to be pointed out in this fashion. Bogdanovich certainly succeeds in giving the movie the comprehensive view it deserves, even to the extent of challenging some of the politically correct nonsensical interpretations it frequently gets, but I couldn't
help thinking that other Ford scholars like Scott Eyman or Joseph McBride wouldn't have done a better job.
Reviewed by Station51 on February 17th, 2016:Find all reviews by Station51
I wanted to see this movie after seeing it cited many times as one of the greatest American films ever made. For the direction by Ford alone it certainly is.
It's very easy to tell how much Bogdonavich admires and worships Ford on here. He likes to talk about the directors he looked up to and had the opportunity to meet, befriend and hopefully gain some insight from. He also likes to imitate them too which at times is almost the next best thing to Ford giving commentary himself. Bogdonavich is always informative and fun to listen to. I'll look for more commentaries from him. He's open and generous with info and he's got the goods on stuff.
This movie holds up extremely well aside from maybe the soundtrack which as good as it could have been at one time makes it sound, at some points, dated.