Rio Bravo (1959)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

Set in Texas during the late 1860s, Rio Bravo is a story of men (and women) and a town under siege. Presidio County Sheriff John T. Chance (John Wayne) is holding Joe Burdette (Claude Akins), a worthless, drunken thug, for the murder of an unarmed man in a fight in a saloon -- the problem is that Joe is the brother of wealthy land baron Nathan Burdette (John Russell), who owns a big chunk of the county and can buy all the hired guns he doesn't already have working for him. Burdette's men cut the … More

Rating: R
Genre: Western, Action & Adventure, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: Jules Furthman, Leigh Brackett
In Theaters:
On DVD: May 8, 2001


as Sheriff John T. Chan...

as Dude ('Borachón')

as Colorado Ryan

as Pat Wheeler

as Nathan Burdette

as Joe Burdette

as Matt Harris

as Cowboy murdered in s...

as Burdette Henchman in...

as 1st Burdette man in ...

as 2nd Burdette man in ...

as Henchman

as Messenger

as Charlie the Bartende...

as Bart

as Burt, Funeral Direc...
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Rio Bravo

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Critic Reviews for Rio Bravo

All Critics (38) | Top Critics (8)

The movie is simultaneously an apogee of the classic Western style, with its principled violence in defense of just law, and an eccentrically hyperbolic work of modernism, which yokes both bumptious erotic comedy and soul-searing rawness to the mission.

Full Review… | April 23, 2013
New Yorker
Top Critic

To watch Rio Bravo is to see a master craftsman at work. The film is seamless. There is not a shot that is wrong. It is uncommonly absorbing, and the 141-minute running time flows past like running water.

Full Review… | April 23, 2013
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Wayne, of course, walks off with the show -- not by doing anything in particular, but simply by being what he is: at 51, still one of the most believable he-men in Hollywood.

Full Review… | April 27, 2009
TIME Magazine
Top Critic

Rio Bravo is a big, brawling western.

Full Review… | May 13, 2008
Top Critic

Howard Hawks's finest western (1959), and perhaps his finest film.

Full Review… | May 13, 2008
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Despite its slickness, virility, occasional humor and, if it may be repeated, authentic professional approach, it is well-made but awfully familiar fare.

Full Review… | March 25, 2006
New York Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Rio Bravo


A wonderful good old-fashioned Western that is compelling and amusing, blending humor and drama in a multi-layered story centered more on the complex characters than on the action - and it has a lot of memorable dialogue and a perfect pacing that is careful but never slow.

Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

One of the most entertaining and fun film experiences you'll ever have. Wayne, Martin & Brennan really shine in this one. Some of the best dialogue I've ever heard.

Graham Jones
Graham Jones

Super Reviewer

An entertaining classic. Sure, to an extent, it's a vehicle for Ricky Nelson - toward the end, we get some very anachronistic country music! - but overall, it's a simple film in which John Wayne does his usual thing (as the sherriff), Dean Martin shines as a drunk struggling to get it together, and luminous Angie Dickinson and her legs-right-up-to-her-neck win the seen-it-all-sherriff's heart. I liked the way in which everyone in town was trapped, in a sense, and the tension that comes from having the barbarians - Burdette's gang - at the gate all the while. The title wasn't the best one, but there's so much in this movie, I don't know what you'd call it: laughs, love, action and drama combine to make an enjoyable film. It doesn't "hit hard," but it's definitely a hit.

Daniel Perry

Super Reviewer

Rio Bravo Quotes

– Submitted by Jesse K (2 years ago)
– Submitted by Rita L (3 years ago)

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