365 Days of Oscar: Day I’m Just Going to Fill This in When It’s All Said and Done
Release Year: 1953
Best Supporting Actress
Best Writing (Motion Picture Story)
THE PLOT THUS FAR
Army despatch rider Hondo Lane discovers a woman and her son living in the midst of warring Apaches, and he becomes their protector.
WHAT WE THOUGHT
Army scout Hondo Lane coming upon an isolated ranch where he meets Mrs. Lowe and her young son Johnny. They have apparently been deserted by the husband and father, the brutish Ed Lowe. Hondo befriends the pair and stays around helping with the long neglected chores. An attraction develops between him and Mrs. Lowe, but Hondo leaves for the army post. Shortly thereafter, Mrs. Lowe and Johnny are visited by a warring Apache chief, Vittorio and his warriors. While the familial Lowes are left to deal with Indians, Hondo ends up in a confrontation with Mr. Lowe back at the army post. The result is a strange parallel that doesn’t pay off like it should.
Originally shot in 3-D, mostly to convey a sense of spatial depth, there are very few 3-D gimmicks. Color cinematography is credible, and uses a good mix of close-ups and wide-angle long shots. Colors might be a tad overdone, with too many bright hues, but that’s the way many outdoor films were shot in the 1950s.
The Blu-Ray comes with an introduction, commentaries, photo gallery and featurettes. What kills me about this movie is that it’s under 90 minutes long and it has an INTERMISSION! Hell, if we’re going to stay that over-the-top, why didn’t Paramount include the 3D version? The whole movie is this giant pile of excess that was meant to rip on “Shane”. The end result is a movie that comes to Blu-Ray in proper widescreen format with a stunning 1080p transfer and TrueHD 5.1 track. A lot of fans have been moaning about the widescreen presentation, but it’s accurate. “Hondo” was filming right when the cinematic push to Widescreen began, so they did frame the shots for a flat ratio of 1.85:1 and not the academy style. In the end, I’d recommend a purchase.
RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW!