The Undefeated

1969

Action / Western

59
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten 17%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 66%
IMDb Rating 6.7 10 5044

Synopsis


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Cast

John Wayne as Colonel John Henry Thomas
Rock Hudson as Colonel James Langdon
Jan-Michael Vincent as Bubba Wilkes
Lee Meriwether as Margaret
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
866.58 MB
1280*720
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 59 min
P/S 1 / 1
1.84 GB
1920*1080
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 59 min
P/S 1 / 6

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Bill Slocum 5 / 10

Second-Tier Duke, But Pretty To Look At

If you want an easygoing movie that employs likable actors to pleasing effect, you may wind up accepting "The Undefeated" for what it is. But if you are like me and want a story that keeps your attention and moves you to a satisfying conclusion, this makes for a tough sell.

At the end of the American Civil War, a Union and Confederate colonel separately lead their people into Mexico. The Yank, John Henry Thomas (John Wayne), is bringing 3,000 horses to the Emperor Maximilian at $35 a head. The Rebel, James Langdon (Rock Hudson), is escaping the ignominy of surrender.

Mexico, alas, is in the throes of a bloody revolution. If they are to survive, they must set aside their differences and work together.

As John Henry explains it: "We got Maximilian on one hand and Juárez on the other, and bandits in between. And on top of that, we're Americans in Mexico taking a cavvy of horses to a very unpopular government. Why should we expect trouble?"

A product of that last great year for Westerns, 1969, "The Undefeated" has amazingly crisp and dynamic cinematography. William H. Clothier knew about shooting horses and horizons, and showcases both talents to majestic effect. The dialogue is often funny. But the film itself offers a hodge-podge of undernourished subplots, sweet talk, and sudden bursts of action that never gels.

Director Andrew V. McLaglen liked to cram his films with lots of different stories and people. Sometimes, like with his Wayne movie the next year, "Chisum," it worked. Here it doesn't.

There's a listless quality to the crux of the movie, John Henry and Langdon working together. Hudson's character is introduced as headstrong ("I got no taste losin' to a lot of Yankee rabble") but seems too easygoing with his former foe. Much time is wasted on a gormless romantic subplot involving Langdon's daughter and John Henry's adopted Cherokee son. Ben Johnson as John Henry's chief buddy has little to do but shrug and make wisecracks. The cast list includes John Agar and Richard Mulligan, but there's only a brief glimpse of the former and no sign of the latter in the finished film. McLaglen must have bit off more than he could chew in post- production.

Wayne is perfectly adequate, settling into the role of senior presence rather than a major player. McLaglen has fun setting up Duke's gruff charm and understated reactions, but as Oscar material, he hardly posed a threat to that year's winner, John Wayne in "True Grit."

Goofy subplots include surly cook Dub Taylor, whose main bit of business is telling everyone but his faithful tabby to go to hell; and a Rebel civilian no one will talk to because he didn't serve in the war. So why did he join them on this dangerous journey? It's never explained, but you hardly notice when nothing else is.

SPOILER ALERT - The ending is a strange one, where John Henry and Langdon turn on Maximilian after Juárez's people take the Southerners hostage. To spare their being massacred John Henry gives up the horses and rides home. Perhaps he realizes the Juáristas despite being ungentlemanly have a point, it being their land, but it's never explained: "You win one, you lose one," John Henry shrugs, and that's that. SPOILER END

There are fun scenes in the movie, and everything is beautiful to look at, so I won't carp too much at all the loose ends. My real beef is wishing McLaglen, a solid pro in other efforts, did more with his cast and opportunities here.

Reviewed by Benedito Dias Rodrigues 7 / 10

Two wrong Decisions!!!

I'd watched this movie for first time in 1978 on TV and more two times now on DVD colorful,widescreen and dubbed version of course l found it better than before,John Wayne and Rock Hudson did a good job indeed,together with a great supporting casting...the story is really unbelievable if you has a minimum brain,how a rich southern Colonel will move to Mexico after lost the war??...leaving behind a large property...such wrong decision...well the film was funny like others John Wayne's movies...like Dub Taylor and his Cat a priceless characters....the other plot Wayne leaving the Army to catch wild horses to sell isn't untrue,but to sell all 3.000 horses and delivery inside the Mexico having the possibility to make this on the safe border,it's another stupid thing....Undefeated just a pleasant movie and so!!!

Reviewed by Leofwine_draca 6 / 10

Solid enough south-of-the-border western with John Wayne

THE UNDEFEATED is another John Wayne western from assured director Andrew V. McLaglen, who could always be relied upon to deliver efficient, brisk, and occasionally workmanlike pictures for the star. Wayne teams up with an equally tall actor here, none other than Rock Hudson, and both actors are hidden beneath mounds of facial hair seemingly inspired by the late '60s hippy-long hair movement.

The story begins just as the American Civil War is ending. Wayne and Hudson are on opposite sides, but as both are good guys then you just know they'll end up teaming together by the end. The pair end up south of the border in an adventure that sees them fighting off Mexican revolutionaries and trying to protect their loved ones. This is a well shot movie, perhaps not the most exciting that Wayne ever made, but with solid action and larger-than-life performances. A big cast including Bruce Cabot, Jan-Michael Vincent, Ben Johnson and Paul Fix play in support.

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