The Searchers (1956)

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  • I know this might sound like a strange connection but I often wonder if George Lucas didn't borrow some from this film for Star Wars. Why? Because that scene where Luke comes back home on Tatooine to see the carnage of his home smoldering plays and is staged very similar to how Ethan comes back to see the carnage of their home burning. It has the same emotional trigger and looks shot with the same panning shot from afar. I was watching it the other night and I just sat back at that moment and said to myself, "Wait a minute..."

  • I know this might sound like a strange connection but I often wonder if George Lucas didn't borrow some from this film for Star Wars. Why? Because that scene where Luke comes back home on Tatooine to see the carnage of his home smoldering plays and is staged very similar to how Ethan comes back to see the carnage of their home burning. It has the same emotional trigger and looks shot with the same panning shot from afar. I was watching it the other night and I just sat back at that moment and said to myself, "Wait a minute..."

    That wouldn't surprise me at all. "The Searchers" is considered to be one of the greatest movies of all time. Many modern directors have acknowledged getting inspiration from it, including Steven Spielberg and other directing giants.

  • I can never get enough of the Searchers. Hank Worden has some of the funniest lines in that film which really help counter balance the dark tone of the story. It's one of the great classics of all time.

  • In the opening scene Ethan is wearing his Confederate coat. The strips on it are of a Sargent. They are red which would have been for the Confederacy artillery. Yellow would have been Calvary. You would have thought he would have been in the Calvary. Was this a studio oversight? only Confederate coat in wardrobe?

  • Hello and welcome to the forum, greenego. I never noticed the stripes before. As they never revealed Ethan's rank or what he did during the war (that I remember), I don't have a answer for you. Maybe someone else can reply who knows. Good eye, though!


    Mark

    "I couldn't go to sleep at night if the director didn't call 'cut'. "

  • I have seen this before, but only after someone pointed it out. Otherwise, I know I would have never caught that. Someone out there was unknowingly in one of the greatest westerns of all time.


    Mark

    "I couldn't go to sleep at night if the director didn't call 'cut'. "

  • I knew Natalie Wood (Debbie) had passed years ago, so I was curious whether Robert Lyden (Ben Edwards), was still alive. Sadly, he passed away in 1986. That makes Pippa Scott the last Edwards child actor to be still with us. Bless her heart.


    Mark

    "I couldn't go to sleep at night if the director didn't call 'cut'. "

  • Oops, I stand corrected. I forgot about the younger Debbie (Lana Wood). She is still with us. She is 72 years young.


    Mark

    "I couldn't go to sleep at night if the director didn't call 'cut'. "

  • It's interesting. (To me at least). I didn't like The Searchers when I first saw it. And not because Wayne's character was such a rabid racist. I followed along with the story and really got into it. But the ending where Ethan seems to have a previously unexpected change of heart really got to me. No, I would not have been happier if he had actually shot Debbie. But I thought it was a cop out ending.


    I have since watched it several times more, and I actually have come to like it. I can actually see hints of the potential for change of heart, and it is an excellent movie.


    There is a theater chain called Alamo Drafthouse that ran this movie a few years back. Unfortunately for me it was at a time when I had no car. I would have liked to seen it on a big screen. You just can't get the scope of the vistas on a 12 inch computer screen. But I wasn't ambitious enough to pedal a bicycle 25 miles to see it. Hopefully it will get another return sometime soon.

  • The Searchers is my favorite John Wayne movie and it's heads and shoulders above all others! It's a story of redemption in that Ethan turns from his original goal of killing, to end with grace. I really think what we didn't see (because the movie ended) was a changed Ethan, I choose to believe he lived the rest of his life a changed man.

  • A number of years ago, I read the book, The Searchers by Alan LeMay. In the book, Ethan dies during the attack on the Comanche village. I guess they wanted a happier ending for the movie version.

  • Any idea what motivated John Wayne to name his son after the character?


    Maybe it was that turning from bad to good.

    Tbone



    "I have tried to live my life so that my family would love me and my friends respect me. The others can do whatever the hell they please."