7.2/10
3,720
51 user 28 critic

Wagon Master (1950)

Approved | | Adventure, Western | 22 April 1950 (USA)
Two young drifters guide a Mormon wagon train to the San Juan Valley and encounter cutthroats, Indians, geography, and moral challenges on the journey.

Director:

John Ford

Writers:

Frank S. Nugent (as Frank Nugent), Patrick Ford
Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Prime Video

ON DISC

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

3 Godfathers (1948)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Three outlaws on the run find a dying woman in the desert who gives birth to a baby. The mother entrusts the care of the child to the three men.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Pedro Armendáriz, Harry Carey Jr.
Comedy | Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

John Ford weaves three "Judge Priest" stories together to form a good- natured exploration of honour and small-town politics in the South around the turn of the century. Judge William ... See full summary »

Director: John Ford
Stars: Charles Winninger, Arleen Whelan, John Russell
Certificate: Passed Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Captain Nathan Brittles, on the eve of retirement, takes out a last patrol to stop an impending massive Indian attack. Encumbered by women who must be evacuated, Brittles finds his mission imperiled.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Joanne Dru, John Agar
Fort Apache (1948)
Action | Adventure | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

At Fort Apache, an honorable and veteran war captain finds conflict when his regime is placed under the command of a young, glory hungry lieutenant colonel with no respect for the local Indian tribe.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Henry Fonda, Shirley Temple
Crime | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Respected black cavalry Sergeant Brax Rutledge stands court-martial for raping and killing a white woman and murdering her father, his superior officer.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Jeffrey Hunter, Woody Strode, Constance Towers
Rio Grande (1950)
Certificate: Passed Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A cavalry officer posted on the Rio Grande must deal with murderous raiding Apaches, his son who's a risk-taking recruit and his wife from whom he has been separated for many years.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Ben Johnson
Tobacco Road (1941)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Hillbilly family life in 1941 rural Georgia.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Charley Grapewin, Gene Tierney, Marjorie Rambeau
Drama | History | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

The Cheyenne, tired of broken U.S. government promises, head for their ancestral lands but a sympathetic cavalry officer is tasked to bring them back to their reservation.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Richard Widmark, Carroll Baker, Karl Malden
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

In 1898, Irish immigrant Martin Maher is hired as a civilian employee at West Point where, during a 50-year career, he rises to the rank of NCO and instructor.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Tyrone Power, Maureen O'Hara, Robert Francis
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The PT boat unit Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron Three defends the Philippines from Japanese invasion during World War II.

Directors: John Ford, Robert Montgomery
Stars: Robert Montgomery, John Wayne, Donna Reed
Adventure | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

In 1863, a Union outfit is sent behind Confederate lines in Mississippi to destroy enemy railroads but a captive southern belle and the unit's doctor cause frictions within ranks.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, William Holden, Constance Towers
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A corrupt marshal is pressured by his army friend into negotiating the release of white captives of the Comanches, but finds that their reintegration into society has its consequences.

Director: John Ford
Stars: James Stewart, Richard Widmark, Shirley Jones
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ben Johnson ... Travis Blue
Joanne Dru ... Denver
Harry Carey Jr. ... Sandy
Ward Bond ... Elder Wiggs
Charles Kemper ... Uncle Shiloh Clegg
Alan Mowbray ... Dr. A. Locksley Hall
Jane Darwell ... Sister Ledyard
Ruth Clifford ... Fleuretty Phyffe
Russell Simpson ... Adam Perkins
Kathleen O'Malley ... Prudence Perkins
James Arness ... Floyd Clegg
Francis Ford ... Mr. Peachtree
Fred Libby Fred Libby ... Reese Clegg
Jim Thorpe ... Navajo Indian
Mickey Simpson ... Jesse Clegg
Edit

Storyline

As Mormon settlers head to the promised land at the San Juan river in Utah, they hire horse traders Travis Blue and Sandy as wagon masters. They have to forge a trail across unknown territory and face many hardships along the way. They quickly come across some stranded travelers, a medicine show run by Dr. A. Locksley Hall which includes the attractive Denver. Along the way however, they are also joined by Shiloh Clegg and his murderous clan of robbers and thieves. An encounter with the Navajo leads to an invitation to their camp but after one of the Clegg boys gets a whipping for attacking one of the Navajo women, Uncle Shiloh plans his revenge. It's left to Sandy and Travis to protect the travelers and get them to their destination. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

John Ford's lusty successor to "Fort Apache" and "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon"

Genres:

Adventure | Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Navajo | Spanish

Release Date:

22 April 1950 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Wagonmaster See more »

Filming Locations:

Monument Valley, Arizona, USA See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$999,370 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Argosy Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In the scene where Travis (Ben Johnson) gets bucked off his horse after Denver (Joanne Dru) throws water on it, Ben Johnson did his own stunts. They used a genuine rodeo bucking horse and John Ford promised Johnson if he rode the horse, he would not have to do any dialogue for the day, which apparently pleased Johnson. He lasted four bucks and came off so hard, he was almost knocked out. Unfortunately, the shot was ruined by one of the wranglers running out to him and asking if he was all right as he lay on the ground. Johnson had to get up and ride the horse again. This time he lasted ten bucks before he bailed off, and Ford got his shot. See more »

Goofs

During the dance, when done going around in a circle, Travis has his hand on Denver's waist, in the next shot it is on her shoulder. See more »

Quotes

Travis Blue: Sure hope that I see you again, Miss Denver.
Denver: Thanks, but don't plan on it, We move around. The medicine show has to, to stay healthy.
Travis Blue: We move around a lot trading horses. Good thing about it, though, you get to see a lot of pretty country, like the valley I got in mind. A man can make an awfully nice little cattle ranch in that valley. If he doesn't mind being lonesome.
Denver: [pauses] Good luck, fellow.
[She runs away, blinded by tears]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Cult of the Cobra (1955) See more »

Soundtracks

CHUCKAWALLA SWING
Words and Music by Stan Jones
Recorded by Sons of the Pioneers (as The Sons of the Pioneers)
Sung by the Sons of the Pioneers (uncredited)
Called by Russell Simpson
Danced by cast
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

My brief review of the film
17 April 2006 | by sol-See all my reviews

Although Ford's movie only really starts halfway through, once the traveling folk and the outlaws meet, the second half of the film is strong enough that the lengthy roundabout beginning is almost forgotten. The outlaws are plain stereotypes, painted very similar to the Clantons in 'My Darling Clementine', but the intense interactions between them and the traveling folk are worth watching for. Oddly enough, the depth of the film does not lie in the happenings between them but rather in the singing and dancing featured. Song and dance is shown as a uniting force between very different cultures, and the songs of the film are very well suited to the Old West atmosphere. The film is a mix of different things: there is a typical predictable love interest, awkward bits of humour, and of course men slinging guns. Then there is the plot of outlaws against the good guys and the almost non-related deeper ideas about bonding between different people. The overall product is rather strange and certainly not one of John Ford's strongest efforts. That said, it is good viewing once it gets going, and Ford captures the vast western landscape as well as one would expect.


7 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 51 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed