“‘Directed by John Ford’: what do those words really mean, anyway?”
Peter Bogdanovich analyzes John Ford’s rich cinematic oeuvre.
Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:
- Movie Directors
- Peter Bogdanovich Films
Peter Bogdanovich’s adulatory look at iconic American director John Ford features movie clips from many of Ford’s most well-known films, a resonant voiceover narration by Ford-fan Orson Welles, and fascinating interviews with several of Ford’s key actors (including Jimmy Stewart, John Wayne, and Henry Fonda). While Bogdanovich’s interview with Ford himself is less informative (he didn’t have much to say), it provides both unintentional comic relief and a revealing glimpse of Ford’s notoriously “difficult” personality. The original version of this documentary has been unavailable for viewing since its release in 1971, so Bogdanovich’s updated iteration is especially welcome; but the original footage ultimately remains much more interesting than the later additions.
Redeeming Qualities and Moments:
- Bogdanovich’s interview with the laconic Ford in Monument Valley
- Fascinating interview clips with Jimmy Stewart, Henry Fonda, and John Wayne
Yes. This documentary is indispensable viewing for any true film fanatic.