Fort Apache Overview:

Fort Apache (1948) was a Western - Black-and-white Film directed by John Ford and produced by John Ford and Merian C. Cooper.

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Fort Apache (1948)

By 4 Star Film Fan on May 9, 2019 From 4 Star Films

Fort Apache gives me the opportunity to consider one of John Ford’s most unlikely long-term collaborations with film critic turned screenwriter Frank S. Nugent. As with all Ford partnerships, it was oftentimes prickly but there’s no repudiating the impact. However, even the writer realiz... Read full article


Fort Apache (1948)

By Beatrice on Apr 5, 2015 From Flickers in Time

Fort Apache Directed by John Ford Written by Frank S. Nugent; suggested by the story “Massacre” by James Warner Bellah 1948/USA Argosy Pictures Repeat viewing/Netflix rental Such a classic Ford mixture of the heroic and the cynical in the Great American West. After the Civil War, Lt. ... Read full article


Classic Films in Focus: FORT APACHE (1948)

By Jennifer Garlen on Feb 10, 2013 From Virtual Virago

The classic Western has many moods, but the tone of John Ford's Fort Apache (1948) is decidedly dark. Its clouds gather slowly, relieved sometimes by deceptive moments of gaiety and light, but still the storm comes on. Loosely based on the events of Custer's Last Stand, Fort Apache is technically a ... Read full article


Classic Films in Focus: FORT APACHE (1948)

By Jennifer Garlen on Feb 10, 2013 From Virtual Virago

The classic Western has many moods, but the tone of John Ford's Fort Apache (1948) is decidedly dark. Its clouds gather slowly, relieved sometimes by deceptive moments of gaiety and light, but still the storm comes on. Loosely based on the events of Custer's Last Stand, Fort Apache is technically a ... Read full article


Classic Films in Focus: FORT APACHE (1948)

By Jennifer Garlen on Feb 10, 2013 From Virtual Virago

The classic Western has many moods, but the tone of John Ford's Fort Apache (1948) is decidedly dark. Its clouds gather slowly, relieved sometimes by deceptive moments of gaiety and light, but still the storm comes on. Loosely based on the events of Custer's Last Stand, Fort Apache is technically a ... Read full article


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Quotes from

[Col. Thursday is addressing the officers]
Lt. Col. Thursday: Gentlemen, I did not seek this command, but since it's been assigned me, I intend to make this regiment the finest on the frontier. I fully realize that prolonged duty in a small outpost can lead to carelessness... and inefficiency and laxity in dress and deportment. I call it to your attention that only one of you has reported here this morning properly dressed. The uniform, gentlemen, is not a subject for individual, whimsical expression. We're not cowboys at this post... or freighters with a load of alfalfa.


Ft. Apache sentry: Halt! Who goes there?
Sgt. Johnny Beaufort: The new commanding officer.
Ft. Apache sentry: Holy Moses!
Sgt. Johnny Beaufort: No, the new commanding officer.


[after telling the soldiers to destroy the whiskey in Meacham's storeroom, Col. Thursday starts to leave]
Silas Meacham: I'll protest. I'll write Washington, I'll have you busted!
Lt. Col. Thursday: Mr. Meacham, you're a blackguard, a liar, a hypocrite and a stench in the nostrils of honest men. If it were in my power I'd hang you from the nearest tree, leave your carcass for the buzzards. But, as you are a representative of the United States government, I pledge you the protection and cooperation of my command. Good day, sir.


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Facts about

Shirley Temple and John Agar were married at the time the movie was made, but went through a highly publicized divorce complete with allegations of spousal abuse, infidelity and alcoholism a couple of years later.
Cinematographer Archie Stout and John Ford used infrared black-and-white film stock, developed originally for medical and scientific researches and which doesn't sense the blue and records that color as black, in many exterior scenes shot in the Monument Valley to enhance the clouds and the rock formations. Ford learned that technique from Mexican cinematographer Gabriel Figueroa that he worked with for The Fugitive.
In 1953, RKO theatrically reissued this film on a double bill with another western, Blood on the Moon starring Robert Mitchum, Barbara Bel Geddes and Robert Preston, with the tag line "Two Rip-Roaring Action Hits!"
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