John Wayne Collection, The: Volume 2
In this action-filled western, John Wayne stars as Big Jake McCandles, a husband who hasn't seen his wife (Maureen O'Hara) in over 18 years. But he returns home after his grandson is kidnapped by a vicious outlaw gang. While the law gives chase in rickety automobiles, Jake saddles up with an Indian scout (Bruce Cabot) and a box of money-even though paying a ransom isn't how Jake plans to exact good old frontier justice. Spiced with humor and first-class gunfights, this is a vivid depiction of the last days of the wild frontier.
Big Jake was a family affair for John Wayne. His oldest son produced it and two other sons, Patrick and John Ethan, appear in it. The film also marks the second time Richard Boone and John Wayne worked together and the fifth time Wayne worked with Maureen O'Hara.
Afflicted with a terminal illness, John Bernard Books (John Wayne), the last of the legendary gunfighters, quietly returns to Carson City for medical attention from his old friend Dr. Hostetler (James Stewart). Aware that his days are numbered, the troubled man seeks solace and peace in a boardinghouse run by a widow (Lauren Bacall) and her son (Ron Howard). However, it is not Books' fate to die in peace, as he becomes embroiled in one last valiant battle.
The Sons of Katie Elder
Katie Elder bore four sons. The day she is buried they all return home to Clearwater, Texas, to pay their last respects. John Wayne is the eldest and toughest son, the gunslinger. Tom (Dean Martin) is good with a deck of cards and good with a gun when he has to be. Matt (Earl Holliman) is the quiet one - nobody ever called him yellow... twice. Bud (Michael Anderson, Jr.) is the youngest. Any hope for respectability lies with him.
Directed by Henry Hathaway (True Grit), an acknowledged master of the western, the story has a dual theme: not only is this a he-man's story, but it is also a drama of the maternal influence of Katie Elder, movingly portrayed from beginning to conclusion.