Zinemateka: John Ford 2nd part


Zinemateka: John Ford 2nd part

AlhóndigaBilbao's Zinemateka opened its doors projecting a retrospective of John Ford, one of the best and and popular film directors of all times, and which scheduled outstanding films of his early days. A year later, Zinemateka is back again with John Ford, focusing this time on films belonging to the last stage of the great American director. Among the films filmed in the 50s and 60s, Ford made treasures such as "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance," "Two Rode Together" and "The Searchers". Although not all were films of the old West. He also turned to other genres such as drama ("The Wings of eagles"), comedy ("Donnovan's Reef") or adventure films ("Mogambo"), scheduled in this season.

Following the retrospective of John Ford, AlhóndigaBilbao's Zinemateka will pay tribute to Jorge Semprun on the first anniversary of his death. The intellectual from Madrid but settled in France signed the stories of directors such as Joseph Losey ("Les routes du Sud"), Costa-Gavras ("Z"), and Pierre Granière Deferre ("Une femme a sa fenêtre") and directed other such as as "Les deux Mémoires" on the Spanish exiles in France. 

In the early 1950s John Ford was already very popular, but not as much as he was to become. As the most awarded director in Hollywood, his fortune faded with the critics and conventional critics considered his films in the last twenty years, a pale reflection of what his films of the thirties and forties had been. It is true that those twenty years were irregular, with two abandoned films and others made in a language seemingly more carefree and less aware of the obvious beauty, although exquisitely composed planes never ceased to appear, backlighting, light and dark and the surrounding sunset light. In this period, Ford directed two of his greatest masterpieces and a select handful of superb works. A new review and a new generation of American filmmakers ended up getting things into perspective and drove "The Searchers" and "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance" to success with its dense, lucid and disturbing drama, and the use of classical language for the most expressive power to the highest consideration of the history of cinema. It would therefore be in the Western, which had already contributed so much, where finally, Ford's expertise would mostly remain. The fluctuations of this period not only reach his narrative pulse, but his controversial ideological positions, which would be complex and contradictory. His nostalgia of an impossible or uncontaminated paradise -Ireland, remoted islands- reaches its greatest heights, as well as his passion for uniforms, hymns and military marches. His positive machism or anti-feminism, has several treasures difficult to hide. But alongside these uncomfortable territory, its painful and front inquiry of racism, the denounce of Indian genocide, his dismal reflection on American history and his final exaltation of female heroism, will extraordinary enrich his thinking, contradicting his earlier and more dubious proposals.

Text: Javier Viar*
Director of the Bilbao Fine Arts Museum

Check the whole programme  (pdf, 3260.8k)


  • More info on '3 Godfathers' (1948), JOHN FORD

    '3 GODFATHERS' (1948), JOHN FORD - 29/02/2012 17:30

  • More info on "Río Grande" (1950), JOHN FORD

    "RÍO GRANDE" (1950), JOHN FORD - 07/03/2012 17:30

  • More info on "Mogambo" (1953), JOHN FORD

    "MOGAMBO" (1953), JOHN FORD - 07/03/2012 17:30

  • More info on "The long gray line" (1955), JOHN FORD

    "THE LONG GRAY LINE" (1955), JOHN FORD - 14/03/2012 17:30

  • More info on "The rising of the moon" (1957) JOHN FORD

    "THE RISING OF THE MOON" (1957) JOHN FORD - 14/03/2012 20:15

  • More info on "Wagon Master" (1950), JOHN FORD

    "WAGON MASTER" (1950), JOHN FORD - 20/03/2012 17:30

  • More info on "Gideon of Scotland Yard" (1950), JOHN FORD

    "GIDEON OF SCOTLAND YARD" (1950), JOHN FORD - 21/03/2012 18:00

  • More info on "The horse soliders" (1959), JOHN FORD

    "THE HORSE SOLIDERS" (1959), JOHN FORD - 21/03/2012 20:00

  • More info on "Sergeant rutledge" (1960), JOHN FORD

    "SERGEANT RUTLEDGE" (1960), JOHN FORD - 28/03/2012 17:30

  • More info on "The sun shines bright" (1953), JOHN FORD

    "THE SUN SHINES BRIGHT" (1953), JOHN FORD - 28/03/2012 20:00

  • More info on "The quiet man" (1952), JOHN FORD

    "THE QUIET MAN" (1952), JOHN FORD - 11/04/2012 17:30

  • More info on "The searchers" (1956), JOHN FORD

    "THE SEARCHERS" (1956), JOHN FORD - 11/04/2012 20:00

  • More info on "The wings of eagles" (1957), JOHN FORD

    "THE WINGS OF EAGLES" (1957), JOHN FORD - 18/04/2012 17:30

  • More info on "Mister Roberts" (1955). JOHN FORD

    "MISTER ROBERTS" (1955). JOHN FORD - 18/04/2012 20:00

  • More info on "The man who shot Liberty Valance" (1962), JOHN FORD

    "THE MAN WHO SHOT LIBERTY VALANCE" (1962), JOHN FORD - 25/04/2012 17:30

  • More info on "The last hurrah" (1958), JOHN FORD

    "THE LAST HURRAH" (1958), JOHN FORD - 25/04/2012 20:00

  • More info on "Two rode together" (1961), JOHN FORD

    "TWO RODE TOGETHER" (1961), JOHN FORD - 02/05/2012 17:30

  • More info on "Donovan's reef" (1963), JOHN FORD

    "DONOVAN'S REEF" (1963), JOHN FORD - 02/05/2012 20:00

  • More info on "Cheyenne autumn" (1964), JOHN FORD

    "CHEYENNE AUTUMN" (1964), JOHN FORD - 09/05/2012 17:00

  • More info on "Seven women" (1966), JOHN FORD

    "SEVEN WOMEN" (1966), JOHN FORD - 09/05/2012 20:00

  • More info on "How the West was won" (1962), JOHN FORD

    "HOW THE WEST WAS WON" (1962), JOHN FORD - 16/05/2012 19:00