In Search of History is a series that aired on the History channel in the late 1990's. These television programs featured topics on history, historical settings, historical dramas, historical subjects and historical individuals.
Runtime: 50 minutes
In Search of History - The Searchers - Netflix
The Searchers is a 1956 American Technicolor VistaVision Western film directed by John Ford, based on the 1954 novel by Alan Le May, set during the Texas–Indian Wars, and starring John Wayne as a middle-aged Civil War veteran who spends years looking for his abducted niece (Natalie Wood), accompanied by his adoptive nephew (Jeffrey Hunter). Critic Roger Ebert found Wayne's character, Ethan Edwards, “one of the most compelling characters Ford and Wayne ever created”. The film was a commercial success. Since its release it has come to be considered a masterpiece and one of the greatest and most influential films ever made. It was named the greatest American western by the American Film Institute in 2008, and it placed 12th on the same organization's 2007 list of the 100 greatest American movies of all time. Entertainment Weekly also named it the best western. The British Film Institute's Sight & Sound magazine ranked it as the seventh best film of all time based on a 2012 international survey of film critics and in 2008, the French magazine Cahiers du Cinéma ranked The Searchers number 10 in their list of the 100 best films ever made. In 1989, The Searchers was deemed “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” by the United States Library of Congress, and selected for preservation in its National Film Registry; it was in the first cohort of films selected for the registry. The Searchers was the first major film to have a purpose-filmed making-of, requested by John Ford. It deals with most aspects of making the movie, including preparation of the site, construction of props, and filming techniques.
In Search of History - Reception - Netflix
Upon the film's release, Bosley Crowther of The New York Times called it a “ripsnorting Western” (in spite of the “excessive language in its ads”); he credits Ford's “familiar corps of actors, writers, etc., [who help] to give the gusto to this film. From Frank S. Nugent, whose screenplay from the novel of Alan LeMay is a pungent thing, right on through the cast and technicians, it is the honest achievement of a well-knit team.” Crowther noted “two faults of minor moment”: "Episode is piled upon episode, climax upon climax, and corpse upon corpse...[t]he justification for it is that it certainly conveys the lengthiness of the hunt, but it leaves one a mite exhausted, especially with the speed at which it goes. “The director has permitted too many outdoor scenes to be set in the obviously synthetic surroundings of the studio stage...some of those campfire scenes could have been shot in a sporting-goods store window.” Variety called it “handsomely mounted and in the tradition of Shane”, yet “somewhat disappointing” due to its length and repetitiveness; “The John Ford directorial stamp is unmistakable. It concentrates on the characters and establishes a definite mood. It's not sufficient, however, to overcome many of the weaknesses of the story.” The New York Herald Tribune termed the movie “distinguished”; Newsweek deemed it “remarkable.” Look described The Searchers as a “Homeric odyssey.” The New York Times praised Wayne’s performance as “uncommonly commanding.” The Monthly Film Bulletin wrote, "Though it does not consistently achieve the highest Ford standards, The Searchers is surely the best Western since Shane. The film earned rentals of $4.8 million in the US and Canada during its first year of release.
In Search of History - References - Netflix