The Searchers

The Searchers

John Ford (1956)

U Certificate


Our Score
Like Monument Valley, where it was filmed, this masterpiece western of revenge and reconciliation from director John Ford is massive and unmissable. It touches the heart of racist darkness and cleanses itself in the process. As John Wayne's Ethan Edwards sets out to kill both the Comanche butcher of his brother's family and the abducted niece who, in his eyes, has turned native, his five-year quest becomes a search for his own soul. Jeffrey Hunter is the conscience along for the ride, but it's the complexity of Wayne's antihero that reveals him as a rootless pioneer, forever framed in the doorways of family homesteads of which he can never become part. Ford's great allegory is of a people lost and found. Arguably, it's John Ford's finest western and he made some great ones.


An embittered American Civil War veteran sets out to find his niece, who has been abducted by a renegade Comanche tribe. His search takes him many years, and during the long quest his travelling companion starts to wonder if he intends to rescue her or kill her. John Ford's Western, starring John Wayne, Natalie Wood, Jeffrey Hunter and Vera Miles.

Cast & Crew

Ethan Edwards John Wayne
Martin Pawley Jeffrey Hunter
Laurie Jorgensen Vera Miles
Sam Clayton Ward Bond
Debbie Edwards Natalie Wood
Lars Jorgensen John Qualen
Mrs Jorgensen Olive Carey
Chief Scar Henry Brandon
Charlie McCorry Ken Curtis
Brad Jorgensen Harry Carey Jr
Mose Harper Hank Worden
Look Beulah Archuletta
Lt Greenhill Patrick Wayne
Debbie Edwards as a girl Lana Wood
Director John Ford
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Warner Bros Pictures LtdAvailable on: video, DVD and Blu-ray