9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Underated Western Masterpiece,
This review is from: The Alamo: Original Uncut Version [VHS] (VHS Tape)
This film had nothing at all to do with Vietnam. It was filmed in 1959 in Brackettville TX, and written/conceived a couple of years earlier (Batjac business venture). The film preaches patriotism, which is a direct result of the early 1950's anti-communism frenzy, very much a commentary on the Cold War, considering John Wayne's political alignment and previous box office endevours (Big Jim McClain). Wayne was a great American and patriot, and believed strongly in democracy and freedom for all individuals. This film brings his talents to bear both acting and directing. The more you view this film, the more apparent the professionalism of the cast and crew becomes. If you've never seen the magic of the cinema before, visit the "Alamo Ranch" north of Brackettville ... the sets are certainly not as large as life! The performances by Wayne, Harvey and Widmark are extrordinary. I also believe, as alluded to in the documentary, that John Ford lent his expertise as a mentor to Wayne during the production. If you don't interrogate the narrative too deeply, and dwell on the performances and historical perspective of the times, the film delivers in many ways. It's right up there with "Moses", "Cleopatra" and "Ben Hur" in terms of production value and the complicated production logistics required to complete the film. My teenage kids have seen it a few times, and enjoy it. I really hope they produce a wide screen version on DVD. Bottomline, not for every casual viewer, but very much part of the Ford/Wayne legacy...(i.e. "The Searchers", "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon"). Enjoy the film for what it is... a classic.