Broken Arrow (1950)

Approved   |    |  Drama, Romance, Western


Broken Arrow (1950) Poster

Tom Jeffords tries to make peace between settlers and Apaches in Arizona territory.

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7.2/10
6,703

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  • James Stewart and Debra Paget in Broken Arrow (1950)
  • James Stewart and Debra Paget in Broken Arrow (1950)
  • Jeff Chandler in Broken Arrow (1950)
  • Debra Paget in Broken Arrow (1950)
  • James Stewart and Jeff Chandler in Broken Arrow (1950)
  • James Stewart in Broken Arrow (1950)

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17 April 2005 | Nazi_Fighter_David
8
| Delmer Daves offers an important major role to an Indian character, treating him with quality and esteem as human being...
Delmer Daves offers an important major role to an Indian character, treating him with quality and esteem as human being...

Stewart plays a scout who seeks to heal the divisions between the Apaches and white men… But while "Broken Arrow" is a perfectly acceptable depiction of frontier struggles, it does not display Stewart to the best advantages… Delmer Daves was competent enough, but he lacked the ultimate virility and intensity of Anthony Mann…

"Broken Arrow" examines, rather intensely and directly, the mistreatment and flagrant exploitation of the Indians by whites in the early West…

The strength of this often lyrically photographed picture which will a1ways have an honorable place among Westerns lies particularly in the touching dignity of Stewart's love and marriage to an Indian girl (Debra Paget). Indian haters, of course, stir up the usual sort of trouble and Stewart's bride becomes a victim with all the consequent poignancy for which the film is best remembered…

The over-wise Chandler counsels him that he must learn to live with his whiteness just as his new friends must contend with their own place in the cosmic scheme of things… Cochise has words of stark consolation for Stewart: "As I bear the murder of my people, so you will bear the murder of your wife."

The most interesting aspect of " Broken Arrow" is not the interracial romance between Stewart and Paget, but Stewart's relationship with Chandler's Cochise… There is intra-character complexity here, as Chandler struggles to overcome his disturb of all whites, and Stewart attempts to comprehend the different philosophy and cultural of the Indians…

Jeff Chandler was quite apt and professional… He was so believable in the role of the Apache chief Cochise that he was to essay it again in George Sherman's "The Battle at Apache Pass" in 1952… Chandler's facial bone structure lent itself to noble, incisive Indian profiles, and unlike other Caucasian actors he did not look out of place… He was even nominated for Best Supporting Actor at that year's Oscars…

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