She Wore a Yellow Ribbon


Action / Western

Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 94%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 81%
IMDb Rating 7.4 10 12880


Uploaded By: FREEMAN
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June 11, 2016 at 07:44 AM



John Wayne as Capt. Nathan Cutting Brittles
Ben Johnson as Sgt. Tyree
Paul Fix as Gunrunner
Harry Carey Jr. as Second Lt. Ross Pennell
720p 1080p
735.04 MB
23.976 fps
1hr 43 min
P/S 3 / 4
1.55 GB
23.976 fps
1hr 43 min
P/S 0 / 4

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by theowinthrop 9 / 10

Never Apologize

There is an ironic point about the production of SHE WORE A YELLOW RIBBON immediately after FORT APACHE. Most critics agree that Col. Owen Thursday, the martinet commander, is based on General George Armstrong Custer, and that the massacre of his command due to his own pig headedness is the battle of the Little Bighorn. But SHE WORE A YELLOW RIBBON begins with that moment in the summer of 1876 when the entire frontier was nervous after word came of the destruction of Custer forces. The historic continuity (which is amazingly consistent, despite minor anachronisms) is shown early when Captain Brittles, visiting his wife's grave, mentions to her the death of Captain Miles Keogh at the Little Bighorn. Historically this is correct. Keogh, a hero of the American Civil War, served with Custer's Seventh Cavalry and died with his commander and fellows. In fact, the only "survivor" of Custer's forces at that disaster was Keogh's horse, "Commanche".

Captain Brittles has served in the American cavalry for thirty years. He was one of those soldiers who held higher rank in the Civil War with a "Brevet", but in the cutbacks in the army following the war (Custer went from brevet major general to Lt. Col. in the regular army)Brittles had to be satisfied with the rank of Captain. His wife and children died (presumably of some epidemic illness at the post - they are buried nearby). His old orderly from the war, Quincannon (Victor McLaglen) is still serving him. But he is facing a crisis. His thirty years means retirement, unless the army decides to promote him to Colonel. Despite the debacle in Montana, it is not too likely that the politically unconnected Brittles will get the promotion his fine abilities deserve.

So we are watching an old soldier slowly fade away in this film. Brittles is aware he has days before he is to leave (unless a promotion turns up), and he has to try to keep the hot blooded Indian braves, impressed at what they just saw Crazy Horse and the Lakota forces accomplish, go on the warpath. He also has to keep his two most promising young officers (John Agar and Harry Carey Jr.) concentrating on their careers rather than fighting over Joanne Dru. He is worried too for Sgt. Quincannon, who is likewise going to be leaving the army a few days after Brittles. Will Quincannon's drunken, roistering ways ruin his chances to maintain his pension? And he has to keep an eye on the suspicious behavior of the local fort sutler (Paul Fix) is up to - can he be running guns? Whatever he faces, he faces unflinchingly, and his motto is never to apologize - it's a sign of weakness.

For all the anachronisms listed on this thread, such as the 48 star flag (in 1876?), Ford got the time and place perfect in what counts. Note the fascinating relationship of Brittles and Sgt. Tyree (Ben Johnson). 1876 was a crossroad year for the U.S. regarding the results of the Civil War. In the negative, a questionable Presidential election result was solidified when three southern states agreed to support the Republican (Rutherford Hayes) over the Democrat (Samuel Tilden) in return for the Federal troops being pulled out of the south and the official end of Reconstruction policies benefiting southern African-Americans. One can't deny that is still a stain in American history (despite Hayes excellent handling of the Presidency afterwords). But the former foes were finding less and less reason to dislike each other, and more and more to admire the grit both sides had shown. During the Civil War, Tyree was a Confederate Captain - he was Brittles' equal in rank. Once the war ended, after a few years, he joins the American Army and rises to the rank of Sergeant. Technically he is not as high a Sergeant as Quincannon, who is Brittles' aide. But Brittles constantly treats Tyree as a full equal, consulting him again and again on how to move next when going out of the fort to confront the Indian threat. The highpoint of this respect is when one of Tyree's "soldiers", "Trooper Smith" turns out to be a former Confederate cavalry leader named Rome Clay, and dies of wounds in an action against the Indians. Brittles and his men watch silently while Tyree and his fellow southern soldiers bury Clay properly with his flag, the Confederate one.

In terms of relations between the whites of the North and South, SHE WORE A YELLOW RIBBON is miles away from the confrontations of, say THE PRISONER OF SHARK ISLAND. There John Carridine's northern officer has nothing but fanatical contempt for Dr. Mudd, whom he considers evil for helping John Wilkes Booth. Until the end of that film, Carridine takes a sadistic interest in making Warner Baxter regret his every move. The events of THE PRISONER was from 1865 - 1869 (when Mudd finally returned to Maryland). This is seven years afterwords.

There are other little historical pointers. The rivalry of immigrant groups is shown when Quincannon is facing rival Sergeant Hochbauer, who openly dislikes the former as an overbearing Irishman (Hochbauer being a German). There is the civilian clothes that are meant for Brittles (complete with "Muller cut-down hat") that Quincannon ends sampling (which leads to his hysterically funny fight with Hochbauer and the other soldiers meant to take him to the guardhouse). Quincannon insists he is not out of uniform (technically he is) but is simply dressed as a retired gentleman should be. Yes, in 1876, that would be the dress of a retired gentleman.

I like this film. The characterizations of the all the actors are strong, and Ford had great set pieces in it. Perhaps not as great a film as THE SEARCHERS (which is more meaty and dark), but a top notch Western all the same.

Reviewed by Righty-Sock ([email protected]) 9 / 10

Exciting, highly enjoyable, and beautiful!

'She Wore a Yellow Ribbon' remains for many viewers their favorite Ford film, and it is certainly the most striking visually... Winton C. Hoch won an Oscar for his Technicolor photography...

The compositions and photography around Ford's new stamping ground of Monument valley are great to look at as always... The Monument Valley goes from bright sunlight to hail and sleet...

There is a melancholy mixed together in those incredible vistas, with a certain sense of dreamlike contemplation... A backdrop so complex but so significant as the human characters...

Ford has superbly achieved a huge and composite demonstration of all the legends of the frontier cavalryman... Never have the legendary troops been through the silent 'Indian country' and across the magnificent Western plains so brilliant, vivid, exciting and romantic...

Ford has surely done better himself, unquestionably with 'My Darling Clementine,' and 'The Searchers,' yet one has to admit the undisputed merits of 'She Wore a Yellow Ribbon.' Even the usual criticism launched against it-that it is a Western influenced by feeling rather by reason—can be dismissed at the start... Certainly Ford can be sentimental but only when the springs of honest feeling run dry and lose their inspiration, and this never really happens in 'She Wore a Yellow Ribbon.'

The story is that of an older cavalry officer (John Wayne) who is six days from retirement at Fort Stark when he's sent out, in a last mission, to escort the Major's wife (Mildred Natwick) and her niece, an attractive single lady (Joanne Dru) out of the danger area... Wayne tries to fulfill his military role protecting his female charges against the uprising of the Sioux, Cheyenne, Kiowa, Comanche and Apaches...

Wayne possibly more than any other Western star has re-created and heightened the mythology of the West-one has only to watch again his absolute and ideal image in 'She Wore a Yellow Ribbon,' or his avenging Ethan in 'The Searchers,' to be reminded of how irresistible the Duke has been on the cinema screen...

'She Wore a Yellow Ribbon' is above all a sentimental movie, with irresistible scenes, full of Ford's best touches:

- The cavalry engaged in its everyday work... Wayne simply can't picture himself in a world far from the army...

- The comic interaction between Wayne and Victor McLaglen, two hardcore professional officers...

- The bravery of Sgt. Tyree (Ben Johnson), chased by hostile Indians, who must finish his mission by reporting to the captain what he saw...

- The rivalry of two young cavalry lieutenants (John Agar and Harry Carey Jr.) in love with the same woman, each competing to have her wear a yellow ribbon as a token of his love...

- The 'beloved brute,' the tough-soft cavalry sergeant sharing his saddle with a little orphan rescued from a devastated stage station...

- Ford celebrating McLaglen's lachrymose in self-indulgent fisticuffs in an epic saloon fight...

- The last inspection of the C. troops almost bringing tears to Wayne's and the audience's eyes, as he reads the inscription that means so much to him...

- Wayne riding into the war camp of the Indians to stop a war...

- The U. S. cavalry at full gallop descending upon the encampment, firing wildly and stampeding hundred of Indian ponies...

- The evocative use of music, notably the gay and spirited theme song of the yellow ribbon, played countless times...

'She Wore a Yellow Ribbon ' is an exciting story with strong characters and sentiment, highly enjoyable, and beautiful...

Reviewed by bkoganbing 9 / 10

"...wherever they rode, whatever they fought for, that place became the United States."

The second of John Ford's cavalry trilogy that deals with the life of the professional soldier is the only one that was photographed in color. Lucky are we, the cinema fans two generations away.

She Wore A Yellow Ribbon has John Wayne the embodiment of the thirty year army man. The year of the action of the film which is 1876 has Wayne mentioning in passing that he was at the Battle of Chapultepec in the Mexican War which started in 1846. Wayne's Nathan Brittles was by his account a dirty shirt tailed runaway from his father's Ohio farm when he joined the army. And now he's reached mandatory retirement. He's married and has had a family who he's lost for reasons John Ford doesn't explain in the film. But Wayne dutifully, "makes his report" at their gravesides every night he's at the post.

Wayne's seen a lot of military history and a lot of tragedy. With no family left, the United States Cavalry is his home and family. He doesn't like the idea of retiring at all. In a later Ford film, The Long Gray Line, Martin Maher says that all he knows and holds dear is at West Point. Wayne could have said that line himself here.

Even though George O'Brien is the commanding officer at Fort Stark, Wayne is the father figure for the whole post. And not like some of the others don't behave like children. The whole romantic rivalry between John Agar and Harry Carey, Jr. over Joanne Dru seems pretty childish. Cute while in the safety of the post, but when out on a mission downright dangerous and Wayne like the good father scolds his kiddies.

With some makeup to grey his hair and wrinkle him a might, Wayne turns in one of his finest performances on the screen. Harry Carey, Jr. wrote what is probably the most evenly balanced portrayal of the Duke in his memoirs In the Company of Heroes. They didn't always get along, but Carey says Wayne was an inspiration to him and the other younger cast members. In fact during the scene with the gunrunners Paul Fix and Grant Withers being killed in the Indian camp while Wayne, Carey, and Agar watch on the ridge, the whole idea for the chaw of tobacco bit came from Carey himself, but that Wayne encouraged the improvisation as he was wont to do.

Other than the Duke, my favorite portrayal in the film is that of Ben Johnson as Sergeant Tyree. Wayne recognizes in him a younger version of himself. In fact Tyree is a former Confederate Army captain, a fact brought out in the death scene of "Trooper Smith" another former Confederate who in fact was a general in that army. Ben Johnson was a real cowboy, a horse wrangler who John Ford gave a chance to act. He graced many a film with his presence and won himself an Oscar to cap his career in The Last Picture Show.

Like in Fort Apache and Rio Grande, She Wore a Yellow Ribbon is the story of the professional soldier and the sacrifices he makes when he gives up his civilian status to serve his country. It's a universal theme, not just confined to the USA. No one embodied that theme better than did John Wayne as Nathan Brittles in She Wore a Yellow Ribbon.

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