[8 September 2011]
PopMatters Features Editor
140. That’s how many movies are attributed to John Ford over his 50 years in Hollywood. It’s an absurd number, almost impossible to imagine. How does one compare a filmmaker who was prolific to this extreme to someone as stingily unproductive as Terrence Malick? Indeed, and this is the most amazing part, even though most of us has never seen even half of these films (many are lost), what we are left with are at least a few dozen unassailable masterpieces. For a man who was tireless, obviously overworked, tied to a studio system which had him churning out picture after picture at breakneck speed for decades, John Ford managed to compile an unparalleled list of unqualified successes.