John Wayne Film Collection [7 Discs] [Blu-ray]

This extensive release for fans of classic tough-guy actor John Wayne offers a wide collection of films, all starring "the Duke."
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John Wayne Film Collection [7 Discs] [Blu-ray]  1930 - Larger Front
  • John Wayne Film Collection [7 Discs] [Blu-ray] 1930
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Overview

Ratings & Reviews

Overall Customer Rating:
Rating 4.6 out of 5 stars.
4.6
95% of customers would recommend this product to a friend (76 out of 80)

Synopsis

The Big Trail
The first "epic" western of the talkie era, The Big Trail is motivated by a hero's search for the murderer of his father. Twenty-three-year-old John Wayne, hitherto limited to bit parts, was thrust into the difficult leading role, a young mountaineer put in charge of a huge California-bound wagon train. Over the next several months, Wayne and his fellow pioneers face every imaginable hazard and disaster, from blistering desert heat to blinding snowstorms, negotiating steep cliffs, treacherous rivers, uncharted forests and other such natural obstacles. Meanwhile, Wayne's tentative romance with heroine Ruth Cameron (Marguerite Churchill) is continually thwarted by a charming but duplicitous gambler (Ian Keith), and all-around villain Red Flack (Tyrone Power Sr.) and his henchman Lopez (Charlie Stevens) ceaselessly plot to double-cross the other wagon-trainers for their own financial gain. The Big Trail was a box-office disappointment, a fact which some have attributed its expensive production methods. Each scene was lensed twice, once in 35-millimeter and then in the 65-mm "Fox Grandeur" wide-screen process. And then, each dialogue scene was filmed in French and German, with totally different casts. Even if Big Trail has been a big hit, it would have lost money thanks to the time-consuming shooting and reshooting of virtually every scene. Whatever the case, it was John Wayne who suffered most from the film's failure; instantly demoted to "B"-westerns, it took him nearly a decade to rebuild his stardom. Long believed lost, The Big Trail was made available for exhibition again in the early 1970s -- and in the 1990s the original widescreen version was at last restored for public view. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

The Barbarian and the Geisha
John Wayne's only collaboration with director John Huston turned out to be a major career misstep for both men. Barbarian and the Geisha is the true story of Townsend Harris (Wayne), who in 1856 was appointed the first American consul to Japan. Headquartered in Shimoda, Harris discovers that the Japanese thoroughly mistrust the Americans (and, as it turned out, not without reason). It's an uphill climb, but Harris gradually earns the respect of the local power brokers-and in so doing, is permitted to enter the city of Tokyo. Geisha girl Eiko Ando, originally sent to thwart Harris' mission, falls in love with him and protects him from harm. Though running only 104 minutes, the film seems to drag on for eons. Filmed on location, The Barbarian and the Geisha is consistently good to look at, but the discomfort of both star Wayne and director Huston is painfully obvious in every frame. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

North to Alaska
Those familiar only with Johnny Horton's song hit North to Alaska might not be aware that the song came equipped with a movie. John Wayne and Stewart Granger star as a couple of lucky miners in Alaska Territory during the '98 gold rush. Since the Duke is the only man he can trust, Granger sends his pal to Seattle to fetch his fiance. Fabian appears in the cast (playing Granger's brother) primarily to attract teenage filmgoers; he gets to sing, of course, but he's better than usual. The film's centerpiece, an outsized brawl in the muddy streets of Nome, was repeated with several variations in Wayne's subsequent McLintock (1963). North to Alaska was based on a considerably more genteel stage play, Laszlo Fodor's Birthday Gift. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

The Longest Day
The Longest Day is a mammoth, all-star re-creation of the D-Day invasion, personally orchestrated by Darryl F. Zanuck. Whenever possible, the original locations were utilized, and an all-star international cast impersonates the people involved, from high-ranking officials to ordinary GIs. Each actor speaks in his or her native language with subtitles translating for the benefit of the audience (alternate "takes" were made of each scene with the foreign actors speaking English, but these were seen only during the first network telecast of the film in 1972). The stars are listed alphabetically, with the exception of John Wayne, who as Lt. Colonel Vandervoort gets separate billing. Others in the huge cast include Eddie Albert, Jean-Louis Barrault, Richard Burton, Red Buttons, Sean Connery, Henry Fonda, Gert Frobe, Curt Jurgens, Peter Lawford, Robert Mitchum, Kenneth More, Edmond O'Brien, Robert Ryan, Jean Servais, Rod Steiger and Robert Wagner. Paul Anka, who wrote the film's title song, shows up as an Army private. Scenes include the Allies parachuting into Ste. Mere Englise, where the paratroopers were mowed down by German bullets; a real-life sequence wherein the German and Allied troops unwittingly march side by side in the dark of night; and a spectacular three-minute overhead shot of the troops fighting and dying in the streets of Quistreham. The last major black-and-white road-show attraction, The Longest Day made millions, enough to recoup some of the cost of 20th Century Fox's concurrently produced Cleopatra. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

The Comancheros
The Undefeated
This routine western finds Union Colonel John Henry Thomas (John Wayne) and company attacking Confederate soldiers lead by Colonel James Langdon (Rock Hudson). After a crushing defeat, Langdon torches his plantation rather than have it fall into enemy hands. A group of Southerners accept the invitation of Emperor Maximilian to join them, and Langdon heads off with a wagon train of settlers to a new land. Thomas with his adopted Indian son Blue Boy (Roman Gabriel) bring a herd of 3,000 horses across the Rio Grand for sale. The two factions meet at a Fourth of July party and relive the war through a drunken brawl. When Mexican General Rojas (Tony Aguilar) holds the Southerners hostage, Thomas orders the herd to stampede into the General's camp as ransom payment for their former enemies. Merlin Olsen plays the blacksmith Little George. Both Gabriel and Olsen were pro-football all-stars for the Los Angeles Rams. Olsen continued his acting and sports announcing after his gridiron days were over. ~ Dan Pavlides, Rovi

The Horse Soldiers
Based on an actual Civil War mission, Colonel Marlowe (John Wayne) and Major Kendall (William Holden) are ordered by General Grant to take three regiments 300 miles into enemy territory. They must destroy the railroad line between Newton Station and Vicksburg in hopes of choking off supplies to the South. Marlowe encounters a Southern belle loyal to the enemy, and keeps her in sight throughout the journey so she can't warn the Confederates. Kendall, a Northern surgeon, and the crusty Marlowe have their differences along the way. Action, romance and gory battlefield surgery accompany the army as the mission is completed. John Ford directed this film based on a novel by Harold Sinclair. ~ Dan Pavlides, Rovi

Overall Customer Rating

95%of customers recommend this product.

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    • Brand Response

      Best Buy Customer Care

      July 1, 2014

      Sorry about that myassassins, always a good thing to know what you’re getting! Here’s the films included in the collection: The Big Trail The Barbarian and the Geisha The Horse Soldiers North to Alaska The Comancheros The Longest Day The Undefeated

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