Sunday, June 13, 2004

Last night I watched John Ford's Fort Apache starring Henry Fonda, John Wayne, Shirley Temple, and John Agar. Temple was cute and adequete in another of her teenager roles. Wayne was quite likeable. But the best performance here was definitly Fonda's as the disciplined but overconfident U.S. colonel. It's a role where you could have very easily ended up despising the man but Fonda makes him more complicated than that. Really, the whole movie hinges more on Fonda's performance than anyone else's.

I taped the film off TCM and there was an introduction by TCM's film historian Robert Osborne, who usually has interesting things to say. he mentioned that Fort Apache, made in the late 40s, had the skewed morality regarding Native Americans common to westerns at the time. After watching the movie, I found it odd Osborne would have mentioned this because the film portrayed the Apaches in a surprisingly good light. There were even scenes of Captain York (John Wayne) defending the Chief's honour when the colonel suggested that all Indians, including the Chief, were mindless savages. In fact, the Indians hardly seem villainous at all, especially after the Chief's speech about how war is bad, but living in a state where women and children are dying because the U.S. government is neglecting them is even worse.


I had a minor triumph with HTML this morning, working on my new web site. Little did I know that for hours I was merely one, small tag away from having the tables I wanted . . .

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