Broken Arrow Reviews

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June 22, 2015
good western and no relation to the 1990 pic of the same name
May 14, 2015
Decent historical drama, just a bit patronising.

The true story of Tom Jeffords (played by James Stewart), who, in the early-1870s, negotiated a peace treaty between the Apache tribe, lead by Coshise (played by Jeff Chandler) and the US government.

Interesting from an historical perspective, and also from a purely dramatical perspective. Moreover, and rare for a 1950s movie, the Indians are portrayed in a positive light. Well, no worse a light than the white people.

However, some of the story appears dramatised, and some stuff is plain unnecessary. Moreover, it all feels a bit patronising towards Indians. Small steps, I guess, after how Indians were usually portrayed in Westerns.

Hard to fault any James Stewart performance and he does a good job here. However, his good-guy image and delivery goes a long way to create the patronising feel of the movie.
March 9, 2015
A weak western film. Predictable and boring.
September 11, 2014
wow....brilliant...amazing......fantastic.....i have just seen this movie 4 the 1st time n think that this is a great movie 2 watch....its got a good cast of actors/actressess throughout this movie.....i think that james stewart (.R.I.P.), jeff chandler (.R.I.P.), debra paget, basil ruysdael (.R.I.P.), will geer (.R.I.P.), play good roles/parts throughout this movie......i think that the director of this western/drama/action/adventure/classics/romance movie had done a great job of directing this movie because you never know what 2 expect throughout this movie....its got good fight scenes thorughout this movie.....

Filming started on 6 June 1949. It was primarily shot on location in northern Arizona, approximately 30 miles south of Flagstaff. Apaches from the Whiteriver agency on the Fort Apache Indian Reservation played themselves. Debra Paget was only 15 when she played the love interest to 41-year-old James Stewart.

The movie was based on the 558-page novel Blood Brother (1947) by Elliott Arnold, which told the story of the peace agreement between the Apache leader Cochise and the U.S. Army, 1855-1874. The studio employed nearly 240 Indians from Arizona's Fort Apache Indian Reservation; all location scenes were shot in Sedona, Arizona. (The story of Cochise actually occurred in what is now the Chiricahua National Monument in southeastern Arizona.) The studio attempted to portray Apache customs in the film, like the Social Dance and the Girl's Puberty Rite. For the character of Cochise, director Daves eliminated the traditional style of broken English and replaced it with conventional English so that whites and Indians would sound alike

i think that this is such a great westerns movie 2 watch, it is such a thrilling movie 2 watch, its got a great cast throughout this movie.....i think that this is such a great movie 2 watch, its got good fight scenes throughout this is such a thrilling movie 2 watch, i think that james stewart was fantastic throughout this movie.....its such a brilliant movie 2 watch, with a great cast throughout this movie.....

Broken Arrow was dramatized as an hour-long radio play on January 22, 1951, starring Burt Lancaster and Debra Paget. It was also presented as a half-hour broadcast of Screen Director's Playhouse on September 7, 1951, with James Stewart and Jeff Chandler in their original film roles. The film and novel also provided the basis for a television series of the same name that ran from 1956 through 1960, starring Michael Ansara as Cochise and John Lupton as Jeffords

The movie's world premiere was at the Nusho Theater in downtown Broken Arrow, Oklahoma.
The Blackfoot Indians would use a broken arrow to signal that they would cease fighting

it is such a fantastic movie 2 watch, with a great cast throughout this movie......
½ June 27, 2014
One of my favorite westerns, right up there with Dances With Wolves, even though few Native Americans were cast. Fox was being very daring making a film where the Indians were treated fairly, as honorable people. It was too much to ask that they give Native Americans the staring roles. At least Jay Silverheels got to play a supporting role. It would take several decades before they would get to play leads, as in Little Big Man. But it was a start.
July 2, 2014
Delmer Daves offers an important major role to an Indian character, treating him with quality and esteem as human being--Solid Western with a More Balanced Viewpoint!!
May 14, 2014
Jeff Chandler, as Cochise, is magnificent in this movie.
December 19, 2013
Decent western with James Stewart doing a good job as an inadvertent peace broker.
December 12, 2013
Intelligent Western ahead of its time in calling for racial tolerance while managing to avoid being preachy.
July 14, 2013
Very well done and thought out western featuring Jimmy Stewart growing tired of the turmoil between the Apaches and the white man, so he decides to do something about it. His progress starts to take hold, and soon he falls in love with a woman from the Apache tribe.. but wait, what effect will this have on the negotiations? I was expecting.. well, I had no idea what to expect, but what I didn't expect is a well-rounded, entertaining story headed by Jimmy Stewart.
½ April 2, 2013
3.5: Daves and Stewart make a good team. This is a race film in sheep's (or rather western clothing). Basically, you couldn't make a film about the relationship between whites and blacks in this era, but you could do a period peace about whites and reds. At least that's my take on the situation. It is essentially all about the need for peace and understanding, which is not exactly standard for the genre. Stewart is the right man for the job and Daves seems to be the right director. Refreshing in its revisionist tendencies and highly recommended for any fan of the genre.
February 22, 2013
Paying a High Price for Peace!
September 8, 2012
Broken Arrow is a western Technicolor film directed by Delmer Daves. Starring James Stewart, Jeff Chandler and Debra Paget. Film is adapted from the book Blood Brother by Elliott Arnold. It received three nominations at Academy Awards for Best Supporting Actor (Jeff Chandler), Best Cinematography (Technicolor), and Best Adapted Screenplay, it won Best Film Promoting International Understanding award at Golden Globes. It portrays two historical figures Chochise (1805-1874) and Tom Jeffords (1832-1914), the two would become fast-friends.

Tom (James Stewart) heals a wounded Apache boy of 14-years on an Indian Territory, for this generous act he is released by the Apache. Tom befriends Cochise (Jeff Chandler), and takes him into confidence to allow stagecoaches, mail to pass-through, with mutual coexistence. However, not all on White-side believe in such truce.

This is an average classic western film, but it's pure in its struggle to define three sought-after words in proper western movies 'tolerance', 'harmony' and 'equality. I loved watching Jeff Chandler and Jimmy Stewart together. While, John Ford and John Wayne and many in their footsteps realized very late about portraying Native-Americans negatively, James Stewart did it quite early in his times. It is first post World-War-II film to depict Native-Americans in positive way, showing their courage of tolerance, and intention to live in harmony, while coping with loss of loved ones. Movies do play major role in brainwashing immature audience, and since the silent movies, there were many of such movies, which would often preach words like 'Barbarians' or 'Savages' for Native-Americans, forgetting to be noticed that at the end of the film "white community triumphs". But I always get excited when former foes make truce to be friends and work shoulder-by-shoulder. Some of us are bad some of us are good, and thus we must always endure pain to make all good.
½ July 27, 2012
I was named after the Apache girl lol. Great movie :)
July 24, 2012
A fine western that shows the constant struggles between the Whites and the Apaches. James Stewart plays the in-betweener, a man who is supposed to bring peace to the two rivaling races. While it seems that the 'treaty' might finally be signed, as it always happens, the human element intervenes and a new fight embarks setting the deadly hunting game. A classic western, but somehow not as engaging as other similar titles.
½ April 19, 2012
A great western that was the first to promote peace between Indians and the whites after WWII
January 22, 2012
Un western de los buenos, entretenido y convincente, y con mensaje antiyanki, que es lo mejor.
February 3, 2010
Engrossing western, this one earned the late Jeff Chandler an Oscar for his white man's portrayl of Cochise.. A drama about a scout and his personal relationship with the American Indian. Debra Pagent is quite good as an indian maiden whom Stewart marries.

Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 2 nominations.

Regretably, it was typical back in the 50 and 60's and beyond, as white people played many of the parts as American native indians, especially Italians who seemed to corner the market on the roles in television.

Very recommended, as is most anything with James Stewart, in my very humble opinion.

NOTEs about the film:

1 At 41, James Stewart was 25 years older than Debra Paget, who was barely 16 at the time of filming.

2 Screenwriter Albert Maltz did not receive a credit when the film was released because he was blacklisted. Instead, the script was credited to Michael Blankfort.

3 The film was considered groundbreaking at the time because it portrayed the native American Indians in a humane light, something that had scarcely happened since silent days. However, years later the film was heavily criticized because the Indians were still played by white actors.

4 The movie's world premiere was held in the Nusho Theater in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma.

5 The broken arrow, which signals an end to fighting, is in fact a Blackfoot Indian symbol, not an Apache symbol. The Blackfoot are native to Montana and Alberta, Canada.


James Stewart ... Tom Jeffords
Jeff Chandler ... Cochise
Debra Paget ... Sonseeahray ('Morningstar')
Basil Ruysdael ... Gen. Oliver 'The Christian General' Howard
Will Geer ... Ben Slade, Rancher
Joyce Mackenzie ... Terry, Scatfly Proprietress (as Joyce MacKenzie)
Arthur Hunnicutt ... Milt Duffield, Mail Superintendent

Director: Delmer Daves
Writers: Elliott Arnold (novel), Albert Maltz (screenplay)

Runtime:93 min

Sound Mix:Mono (Western Electric Recording)
Color: (Technicolor)

½ August 2, 2010
A great western that was the first to promote peace between Indians and the whites after WWII
½ January 30, 2011
Great flick! And it has some real history about Tucson and the old west. If you want to see the true story that Dances With Wolves is based on - this is the one.
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