John Ford

John Ford

  • Highest Rated: 100% The Long Gray Line (1955)
  • Lowest Rated: 40% The Wings of Eagles (1957)
  • Birthday: Feb 1, 1894
  • Birthplace: Cape Elizabeth, Maine, USA
  • Maine-born John Ford (born Sean Aloysius O'Fearna) originally went to Hollywood in the shadow of his older brother, Francis, an actor/writer/director who had worked on Broadway. Originally a laborer, propman's assistant, and occasional stuntman for his brother, he rose to became an assistant director and supporting actor before turning to directing in 1917. Ford became best known for his Westerns, of which he made dozens through the 1920s, but he didn't achieve status as a major director until the mid-'30s, when his films for RKO (The Lost Patrol [1934], The Informer [1935]), 20th Century Fox (Young Mr. Lincoln [1939], The Grapes of Wrath [1940]), and Walter Wanger (Stagecoach [1939]), won over the public, the critics, and earned various Oscars and Academy nominations. His 1940s films included one military-produced documentary co-directed by Ford and cinematographer Gregg Toland, December 7th (1943), which creaks badly today (especially compared with Frank Capra's Why We Fight series); a major war film (They Were Expendable [1945]); the historically-based drama My Darling Clementine (1946); and the "cavalry trilogy" of Fort Apache (1948), She Wore a Yellow Ribbon (1949), and Rio Grande (1950), each of which starred John Wayne. My Darling Clementine and the cavalry trilogy contain some of the most powerful images of the American West ever shot, and are considered definitive examples of the Western. Ford also had a weakness for Irish and Gaelic subject matter, in which a great degree of sentimentality was evident, most notably How Green Was My Valley (1941) and The Quiet Man (1952), which was his most personal film, and one of his most popular. It also earned more Oscars and nominations than any other movie ever produced at Republic Pictures. Poor health dogged Ford's career during the 1950s, but he still managed to create The Sun Shines Bright (1953) -- one of his favorite films, dealing with politics and race relations in the 19th century South -- Mogambo (1953), and The Searchers (1956), which is considered one of the most powerful Western dramas ever made. The Horse Soldiers (1959) showed some of Ford's flair, but was marred by production problems, and Ford later directed the John Wayne/Harry Morgan section of How the West Was Won (1963). His concern with social justice, which manifested itself in The Sun Shines Bright also became more evident during the early '60s, in films such as Sergeant Rutledge (1960), Donovan's Reef (1963), and Cheyenne Autumn (1964), all of which sought to address problems of racial prejudice. Ford was the recipient of the first Life Achievement Award bestowed by the American Film Institute, and was the subject of Peter Bogdanovich's documentary, Directed by John Ford (1971). He died in 1973.

Highest Rated Movies








67% Never Apologize: A Personal Visit With Lindsay Anderson Actor 2007
No Score Yet The Great American West of John Ford Actor 1973
No Score Yet 7 Women Director 1966
62% Cheyenne Autumn Director 1964
86% How the West Was Won Director 1963
55% Donovan's Reef Director Producer 1963
93% The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance Director 1962
80% Two Rode Together Director 1961
86% Sergeant Rutledge Director 1960
90% The Horse Soldiers Director 1959
92% The Last Hurrah Director Producer 1958
No Score Yet Slippery When Wet Actor 1958
No Score Yet The Rising of the Moon Director 1957
40% The Wings of Eagles Director 1957
98% The Searchers Director 1956
92% Mister Roberts Director 1955
100% The Long Gray Line Director 1955
85% Mogambo Director 1953
No Score Yet The Sun Shines Bright Director Producer 1953
90% The Quiet Man Producer 1952
57% What Price Glory? Director 1952
75% Rio Grande Producer Director 1950
100% Wagon Master Director Producer 1950
95% She Wore a Yellow Ribbon Producer Director 1949
95% Mighty Joe Young Producer 1949
82% Three Godfathers Producer Director 1948
100% Fort Apache Producer 1948
86% The Fugitive Producer Director 1947
100% My Darling Clementine Director 1946
90% They Were Expendable Director Producer 1945
No Score Yet December 7th Director Producer 1942
No Score Yet The Battle of Midway Screenwriter Director Commentary 1942
91% How Green Was My Valley Director 1941
No Score Yet Tobacco Road Director 1941
100% The Long Voyage Home Director 1940
100% The Grapes of Wrath Director 1940
82% Drums Along the Mohawk Director 1939
No Score Yet Frontier Marshal Director 1939
100% Young Mr. Lincoln Director 1939
100% Stagecoach Director Producer 1939
40% Four Men and a Prayer Director 1938
No Score Yet Submarine Patrol Director 1938
No Score Yet Wee Willie Winkie Director 1937
No Score Yet The Hurricane Director 1937
No Score Yet The Plough and the Stars Director 1936
No Score Yet Mary of Scotland Director 1936
No Score Yet The Prisoner of Shark Island Director 1936
No Score Yet Steamboat Round The Bend Director 1935
93% The Informer Director 1935
100% The Whole Town's Talking Director 1935
No Score Yet The World Moves On Director 1934
100% The Lost Patrol Director 1934
80% Judge Priest Director 1934
No Score Yet Doctor Bull Director 1933
80% Pilgrimage Director 1933
No Score Yet Flesh Director Producer 1932
No Score Yet Air Mail Director 1932
88% Arrowsmith Director 1931
No Score Yet Up the River Director 1930
No Score Yet Born Reckless Director 1930
No Score Yet Seas Beneath Producer Director 1930
No Score Yet Men Without Women Producer Director 1930
No Score Yet Salute Producer Director 1929
No Score Yet The Black Watch Director 1929
No Score Yet Mother Machree Director 1928
No Score Yet Hangman's House Director Producer 1928
No Score Yet Four Sons Producer Director 1928
No Score Yet The Blue Eagle Director Producer 1926
No Score Yet Three Bad Men Producer 1926
78% The Iron Horse Director Producer 1924
No Score Yet Just Pals Director 1920
No Score Yet Bucking Broadway Director 1917
No Score Yet Straight Shooting Director 1917


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