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Western Techniques In The Searchers

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Foreword: It should be noted that while this written piece compares and contrasts The Searchers to the concept of ‘the stereotypical Western film’, the film would most certainly have shaped the mould for what the stereotypical western was to become. Being one of the largest early Western films to release, the film’s once relatively unique storyline and thematic content have become subject to being replicated in more recent Western films. Therefore, when comparing the film to the now conventional Western, it should serve moreso as a critique of the unoriginality of those that contributed to the genre following The Searchers release.
Introduction
For what is arguably the most successful film to emerge from his long spanning career, film director John Ford’s The Searchers has certainly earned its place as ‘one of the greatest western films of all time’. However, while the film is certainly a staple among other classic 1950s productions, the genre of Western film does not carry nearly as much weight as it once did over half a century ago. In recent decades, the genre has grown stale among audiences due to more recent additions, composing of tedious storylines, repetitive run-of-the-mill characters, and as a whole becoming incongruous with the evolved social climate which pursues racial equality in the United States. Being grouped with this genre, The Searchers is often overlooked by
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Set in 1868 - three years after Civil War ended, the film introduced a complex narrative entailing mystery, tragedy, adventure, conflict, action and romance. The film’s inclusion of numerous themes catered to audiences of all types and allowed for a more accessible story, leading to its successful performance in the box office both domestically and internationally. However, the themes and events of the story are not all that unheard of within the broader spectrum of Western
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