The Searchers | Chicago Reader

The Searchers

We may still be waiting for the Great American Novel, but John Ford gave us the Great American Film in 1956. The Searchers gathers the deepest concerns of American literature, distilling 200 years of tradition in a way available only to popular art, and with a beauty available only to a supreme visual poet like Ford. Through the central image of the frontier, the meeting point of wilderness and civilization, Ford explores the divisions of our national character, with its search for order and its need for violence, its spirit of community and its quest for independence.



  • John Ford


  • John Wayne
  • Jeffrey Hunter
  • Natalie Wood
  • Vera Miles
  • Ward Bond
  • John Qualen
  • Harry Carey Jr.
  • Olive Carey
  • Antonio Moreno
  • Henry Brandon
  • Hank Worden
  • Lana Wood
  • Dorothy Jordan
  • Pat Wayne


  • Alan Le May
  • Frank Nugent


  • Merian Cooper
  • C.V. Whitney

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