Red River (1948) - Action, Adventure, Drama

Hohum Score



Dunson leads a cattle drive, the culmination of over 14 years of work, to its destination in Missouri. But his tyrannical behavior along the way causes a mutiny, led by his adopted son.

IMDB: 7.8
Director: Howard Hawks
Stars: John Wayne, Montgomery Clift
Length: 133 Minutes
PG Rating: N/A
Reviews: 14 out of 181 found boring (7.73%)

One-line Reviews (88)

And the film eventually ends in a cliche fight scene where the thick-headed combatants lie in a comic heap while the woman provides the voice of reason.

Dimitri Tiomkin's thunderous score sets the tone for this rousing story of cowboy ranchers in nineteenth century Texas headed north, with a thunderous herd of cattle in tow.

I really enjoyed this the first time I saw it but it got a little slow on the second viewing.

But pat psychology aside the film is chiefly enjoyable for its sheer physicality.

And the superlative performances by all players create characters that are new, exciting and unforgettable.

A beautifully filmed motion picture that tells an action packed story and includes top notch support from veteran Walter Brennan and Noah Beery Jr.

I know of movies which are more highly regarded which seem slow and dull in comparison; Red River got off to a quick start and caught my interest, and held it through the whole movie.

Many slow and clich'e scenes but the ending was very intense and displays the thin line between love and hate in humans wonderfully.

Reasonably entertaining film doesn't really have anyone in particular to root for, since both men had valid points, and the showdown at the end is anti-climatic.

And so "River" is all about confusion, repression, the discomfort with male weakness, guilt and the inability to act.

(Further confusing the matter is that if this was Clift's first acting gig, how were his politics and sexuality known quantities to the other stars?

If the Duke was merely winged his adrenaline would have taken over due to his self-proclaimed hatred for clift and he would have beaten the living bejesus out of him.

The film additionally has some pacing issues, but overall, it is engaging and stands up very well to repeat viewings with a tangible human drama element constantly elevating it above genre clichés.

Also the ending seems a bit trivial considering how intense and rough most of the rest of the production is.

An extended 360-degree shot on the cattle, a religious silence, John Wayne addresses Montgomery Clift with the legendary "Take'em to the Missouri, Matt" and then all the cowboys wave their hats in the air, yelling "hee-haw" in a thrilling close-up montage.

The film is only minimally dated, and is very enjoyable.

And how that trouble unfolds and plays out presents viewers with engaging human drama, and humor, centered on these three main characters.

The cinematography, in living black-and-white, is nevertheless stunning.

With such a notable cast of western characters to back up John Wayne like Walter Brennan, Harry Carey, Harry Carey Jr., Noah Beery, Paul Fix and the always entertaining Hank Wordan you are guaranteed to have a movie you will never be disappointed with.

Disliked narrative intrusions and disjointed feel of scenes hurried or missing.

Of course, there are some historical glitches, but it is mainly very enjoyable with a nice performance from Montgomery Clift as Matthew 'Matt' Garth, and John Wayne (pre-figuring his "The Shootist" performance by couple of decades) plays a pretty mean buzzard.

Where the movie is brilliant in showing Dunson's psychological decline and the collapse of the family, the redemption at the end is completely contrived.

From the conservative point of view, this is a coming of age story about family values.

An enjoyable western .

A simple, compelling, detailed account of a cattle drive that gets out of hand when the men are pushed to exhaustion and mutiny, it has an abundance of memorable scenes along the trail.

The film is immensely exciting, helped in no small part by Dmitri Tiomkin's rousing score.

The stampede scene and the river crossing are exciting actions scenes in their own right.

Rather than bore you with the plot, which you've probably read, I will say that you simply shouldn't miss seeing this powerful picture.

Very well made, amazing scenery, some great acting, though all a bit formulaic .

It's an interesting western, but I thought the ending involving Dru was a bit contrived and not entirely true to the characterizations of Wayne and Clift that went before.

Even if you have no cattle, "Red River" is still a wonderfully entertaining cinematic experience.

It didn't help matters much that Red River's big-name star was, none other than, John Wayne who, not only had a less-than-impressive screen-presence, but, he always struck me as someone who's thoroughly bored with what they are doing.

The cinematography is truly breathtaking and Dimitri Tiomkin's beautiful score is among his best works.

A fascinating assembly of support players includes the Careys, father and son (though the two never meet), Tom Tyler (briefly glimpsed), Paul Fix as a whinger saved from a hanging and Chief Yowlachie surprisingly amusing as a comic relief assistant cook and bottlewasher!

All she does is to slow down the pace and dissipate most of the tension.

Mainly I feel that Dunson's executive management style is fascinating.

Montgomery Cliff was wonderful and Walter Brennan as enjoyable as always.

Breathtaking scenery and action make you believe that you are on that dusty cattle run yourself.

A fascinating psychological game ensues, with old hand Wayne pursuing young, determined Clift across the states.

It has several well-mounted, exciting sequences; an early Indian attack at night, a horrifying stampede, a great river-fording scene with some amazing shots from the back of Brennan's wagon, an incredibly sensuous foggy love scene with Clift and Dru.

The action sequences were exciting (including a flaming arrow that flys right at you like the bullets in "Apocalypse Now")!

Nevertheless, it's great seeing Wayne when he was lean & mean at 40; and the tensions that slowly build leading to the gripping confrontation are well done.

(The dialogue is Hawksian patter, screwball-timed and stunning ["Can I see it?

Though Chase would be annoyed at the changes Hawks made to the story, he surely would have marvelled at the finished product, with Harlan's photography in and around the Arizona's locales capturing a cowboys terrain expertly, while Dimitri Tiomkin's score stirs the blood and pumps the viewer with Cowboy adrenaline.

It takes a fascinating look at the cattle drive during the Wild West.

i thought his movie was well worth watching,all though it does seems a bit drawn out on occasion.

Towering acting from main cast playing larger-than-life characters as John Wayne as obsessed Tom who owns a sprawling cattle empire , and Montgomery Clift giving one of his most enjoyable and least complicated acting .

There isn't a lot of action, and the directing makes this seem even slower in pace.

Containing every predictably stale Western-movie cliché in the book (and then some), Red River's story of (guess what?

RED RIVER is a western drama revolving around the intense bitterness between two men, and comes to a climax when MONTGOMERY CLIFT (in his first role) is pitted against his guardian JOHN WAYNE, after a cattle drive during which the two have various disagreements over Wayne's ruthless handling of life and death matters.

Deep Cast, Compelling Story Albeit A Bit Long .


Overall just a slow, dated, overlong and boring old racist western with the racist McCarthyite Republicans Wayne and Walter Brennan doing their usual bad "acting".

Also, a Rousing Score, some good Dialog, and its all so Professionally Made.

Its story is simple, direct, exciting, and well told, with complex characters, interesting and sympathetic because they show weakness as well as strength.

Compelling, until the last 2 minutes .

Taken as it is, it is a thrilling and authentic depiction of a cattle drive just after the Civil War.

) This sort of tiresome nonsense went on for 2 solid hours.

Ultimately, "Red River" is a fascinating father-and-son relationship study that confronts two views on life, a stubborn old-school rancher and a romantic opportunistic go-getter, it's also a confrontation between two generations, the no no-sense and the tormented actor.

If there's anything MORE diabolically tedious than reading a printed book, it's struggling to decode a volume scribbled out in cursive.

The only real problem with the film is that it's somewhat predictable.

It feels forced, contrived, even silly.

It's still a compelling story.

The epic scale of the cattle drive being attempted by Dunson is fantastically portrayed by the director Howard Hawks and as you follow the drive on its journey you begin to become immersed and feel you are actually part of what is happening.

Director Howard Hawks examines capitalism and dueling masculinities in the rousing context of a Western cattle drive.

For a movie that is being called spectacular it's a surprisingly slow and dull one.

Musical composer Dimitri Tiomkin's rousing soundtrack , the theme song, "Settle Down" was later adapted by the score's author, Dimitri Tiomkin, and sung by Dean Martin and Ricky Nelson under the title "My Rifle, My Pony and Me" in Río Bravo, another John Wayne western directed by Howard Hawks .

Tremendously Exciting Western with a "Gotcha!

" Ireland's character is fascinating and could have been developed a bit more (Hawks claims that Ireland was smoking weed and drinking and he had to cut the dialog).

The romantic sub plot looks more than a little contrived as does Wayne's last minute change of attitude towards Clift's character.

) a cattle-drive (ho-hum!

Yet the film is still weirdly compelling.

The music by the ever reliable Dmitri Tiomkin is outstanding and enhances the drama, while the script is strong and the story and characters rich and compelling.

Beautifully filmed and the Duke is excellent in this action packed dust rustler.

When he kills the wranglers who want to leave the drive, he is the one who draws first.

Not so much for his acting, which is very good, but more for the curiously compelling image he portrays on screen, in all his roles; somehow you can't take your eyes off him.

Red River is extremely entertaining while giving a true to life glimpse of what it was like in Texas in the middle 1800's.

Evocative cinematography by Russell Harlan , though Hawks originally wanted Gregg Toland as his director of photography , when Toland proved unavailable, he had to go with Harlan instead.

Overlong, boring and racist .

A really interesting and enjoyable western .

But, as of the last few years - I'm now finding movies of this particular genre are actually boring me to distraction with their ludicrous depictions of affected masculinity set in the Old West.

The magnificent cinematography shows the breathtaking immensity of western landscapes, giving a sense of true epic to the work of cowboys.

The picture gets thrills , action Western , shootouts , a love story , a violent battle of wits between father and adopted son ; being quite entertaining .

Dull story of good versus evil .

One other note: you're likely to look at several scenes and think about how stunning they would have looked in color (though I wouldn't advocate "colorizing" the movie).

As a visual experience, it makes full use of the wide and empty landscapes and looks beautiful (although not in the colorised version occasionally seen).

) was fascinating, scenes where he admires Clift's beautiful gun and eventually dies defending him.

This film has pretty much become history for many people and while the film, at times, goes on way too long I think there's enough here to where you can easily call it a classic.