British Film Institute
John Ford's masterpiece The Searchers
(1956) was voted the seventh greatest film of all time in Sight & Sound
's most recent poll of critics. Its influence on many of America's most distinguished contemporary filmmakers, among them Martin Scorsese, Paul Schrader, and John Milius, is enormous. John Wayne's portrait of the vengeful Confederate Ethan Edwards gives the film a truly epic dimension, as does his long and lonely journey into the dark heart of America. Edward Buscombe's insightful study provides a detailed commentary on all aspects of the film, drawing on material in the John Ford archive at Indiana University, including Ford's own memos and the original script, which differs in vital respects from the film he made, to offer new insights into the film's production history.