Best John Wayne Movies

The Top Ten
1 The Searchers The Searchers Product Image

Wayne's performance as Ethan Edwards was dead on. A man obsessed with his mission. The scene where he describes finding his niece, Debbie, dead and burying her is raw emotion. The timbre in his voice when he says "don't ask me more. As long as you live don't ever ask me more." tells so much about this 'tough guy' that he was playing. Such a complex character and John Wayne nailed it. He should have been nominated for an Oscar for this role.

I was inspired to watch this movie because I listened to a band called The Searchers. The Searchers named themselves after the John Wayne movie. Also Buddy Holly wrote the song "That'll Be The Day" because of John Wayne's catch phrase in The Searchers

A rare combination of one of the finest actors of his time, playing a character of his own age, a great cast, great director, locales and story. One for the ages.

I agree this should be one of his top 10 movies, however I think The Shootist should be #1, based on what was going on in his personal life.

2 Red River Red River Product Image

Red river should have won him an Oscar, the acting was great montgomery Clift was great too. Walter Brennan was also a good supporting cast member.

Red River was my all time favorite. I was only a kid but I loved him in this movie. He was great.

This is not only my favorite John Wayne movie, but its in the top 10 of my all favorite movies.

Without a doubt his best performance was in Red River.

3 True Grit True Grit Product Image

True Grit, is a story where all the characters show true grit. So many characters in the story show grit the good guys, the bad guys, even John Wayne's horse. Then Maddie's horse little blackie shows true grit. One of the best.

This movie defines the meaning of a man with 'grit'. John Wayne shows many sides to his talents, grit, compassion and determination... a real treat. The Best in my humble opinion.

The movie shows probably the most colorful character john wayne ever played. Plus, I dig the eye patch.

His best, no doubt about it. At least higher than some of the others above it.

4 Big Jake Big Jake Product Image

The most humor in a John Wayne movie! Can watch this one over and over.

John Wayne deserved an Oscar for Big Jake, more than for True Grit.

One of the best most underrated John Wayne movies!

Big Jake = Best John Wayne movie ever!

5 The Cowboys The Cowboys Product Image

I always remember this movie when I was young. John Wayne at his best! This shows that young boys were true men and respectful.

I LOVE this movie! With all the little boys and john it's a perfect movie I think it should be #1!

Excellent Duke movie and the young boys were terrific.

The young boys added to the depth of this film.

6 The Shootist The Shootist Product Image

John Wayne played a dying man when he himself was dying. He played a gunslinger whose glory days had passed as America was at the cusp of a new century. He played the role in a very moving, heartfelt manner. It was if he knew this movie was a symbolic passing of the torch as western movies' glory days were also passing, but he wanted to go out on a high note. In my humble opinion, this silver screen giant gave the best performance of his legendary career. There will never be another like him.

A great movie to summorise a great movie career.. In a genre he excelled at, not the greatest natural actor but a man who was a natural in his acting... Many actors today could only wish for the same

One of John Wayne's best performances. He was quiet and reflective in this performance, but reached down to pull up some classic Duke when needed.

I cannot see this movie enough times. Lauren Bacall and Ron Howard also were great characters in the movie. A "must see" if you enjoy classics and John Wayne in particular.

7 Stagecoach Stagecoach Product Image

I love this movie because it shows John Wayne at his rawest. You know he hasn't had a lot of experience in movies, yet you still are able to catch glimpses of what is to come with him. It's like watching him sliding on his eventual star clothing. If you love John Wayne movies, you have to watch this. It is indeed the beginning.

8 The Sons of Katie Elder The Sons of Katie Elder Product Image

John Wayne did an exceptional acting job in this film. This was his first movie after having a lung removed. It was filmed in Mexico at high altitude and required Wayne to use oxygen between takes. He also insisted on performing his own stunts. Amazing when you consider he was only months out from major surgery. Also amazing because the filmgoers watching never realized how difficult the many actions scenes were for him.

Mr. Wayne was great in this movie. Cause All The Brother Likes All Brother FAUGHT With Him, But he Was The Elder And They Did What He said. To say I love all his movies. John Wayne is my hero. And always will be.
Trandy

The duke actually was not dying in 1976 when this movie was made, he died in 1979. He was not dying yet. Look it up.

9 The War Wagon The War Wagon Product Image

One of Wayne's best action efforts. Douglas was fantastic as well. A movie that will keep you in your seat. A little low on the rankings but certainly worth the watch if you are a western movie buff..

10 El Dorado El Dorado Product Image

Add this to your"must see"John Wayne movies. This should be in the top five. Also had great performances by Robert Mitchum and a young up and comer named James Caan.

The Best, First movie I saw at a theater.

How could this movie not be in the top 5.

Best JW movie because of Dean and Walter.

The Newcomers

? The Longest Day The Longest Day Product Image
The Contenders
11 The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance Product Image

Just a great story and two solid performances from Wayne and Stewart!

My favorite western period.!

Two greats together

The best of the best

12 The Quiet Man The Quiet Man Product Image

John Wayne's performance was stellar - his voice, facial expressions and acting style were magnificent - and Maureen O'Hara was perfection - and the supporting actors were stars in their own right. One of the all-time great movies.

Another fine performance by John Wayne. The chemistry between Wayne and Maureen O'Hara is perfect and the story is touching and showcases the Irish locations perfectly.

I have always loved this movie. Nearly wore it out watching it on my VHS! It has its' serious moments and its' wonderful comedy and a special warmth.

This might be one of the best movies about Ireland ever made. It has a little of everything and is great fun.

13 The Alamo The Alamo Product Image

Good movie but wasn't sure about the raccoon hat though

14 Rio Bravo Rio Bravo Product Image

Howard Hawks directed another terrific movie with pacing, humor, action and character.John Wayne, Dean Martin, and Walter Brennan gave some of their best work in this.Angie Dickinson was a beautiful woman only in her twenties, but was an integral part, not just an obligatory female.Ricky Nelson did well in a role in a John Wayne movie every kid would have loved to do. The script moved pretty fast, but there were no holes; every scene was a natural successor to the previous one. The bad guys, John Russell and the excellent Claude Akins, were mean, but not over the top. This was a great ensemble of actors with an excellent story and action.It was a fun movie in the late fifties that still holds up quite well. I watch it when it is on T.V. and it never bores. This was remade in Rio Lobo and El Dorado, but the magic was just not there as in the original.

A great movie with a great cast & still can't beat the singing of Dean Martin & Ricky Nelson. One of the best.

A wonderful script and a great cast make this movie one of his all time best.

A overlooked movie, was very enjoyable to watch.

15 McLintock!

My all time favorite! Was surprised it wasn't in the top ten!

Another favorite of mine and should be in the top 10.

Just an all around great movie

All time favorite of mine.

16 Hatari! Hatari! Product Image

My dad and I after so many times of watching this classic over the years, still make time to sit down and watch it together. Just a really nice film.

Since I remember it from having seen it only once some 50 years ago...it must have been one of the best.

Great Movie for everyone.

My dad's favorite movie

17 She Wore a Yellow Ribbon She Wore a Yellow Ribbon Product Image

I miss TheTopTens as it was once upon a time. Nothing happens whenever I vote anymore and I find that sad, because it's certainly not right not to count votes, just because people want their lists to remain unchanged. That is bigotry, though. Anyway, if you don't want us to vote, then what's the purpose of voting? I hope this time you will publish my complaint, because it really comes from my heart and I hope that you will think a little on that.

Yellow Ribbon is a great movie, indeed Hal! I also agree with you as it comes to The Searchers and Rio Bravo. Both are movies with a poor script that ranked so high because of the beautiful cinematography and direction.

Should be in the top
Five.

18 Hondo Hondo Product Image
19 Tall in the Saddle Tall in the Saddle Product Image

Great script skillfully brought to life. One of Dukes very best!

This is a top 10 for sure

20 Hellfighters Hellfighters Product Image

One of the best movies I have seen it is based on a real live oilfield fire fighter Paul N Red Adair. I worked with Red

21 Rio Lobo Rio Lobo Product Image

I can't belive this isn't in top 10

22 Rio Grande Rio Grande Product Image

Great film. Another John Ford classic job of directing. A top ten. First time for greats together. John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara and Harry Carry Jr. and Ben Johnson and Ken Curtis who sang and was a regular with Sons of the Pioneers who were also in it along with Chill Wills. Yes--A great film.

Classic, Wayne, Ford and O'Hara with a supporting cast of Ford's Usual Suspects.

23 In Harm's Way In Harm's Way Product Image

One of the best Navy films. John Wayne at his best.

24 Fort Apache Fort Apache Product Image
25 The Sands of Iwo Jima The Sands of Iwo Jima Product Image
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