Wagon Master As Mormon settlers head to the promised land at the San Juan river in Utah, they hire horse traders Travis Blue and Sandy as wagon masters. They have to forge a trail across unknown territory and face many hardships along the way. They quickly come across some stranded travelers, a medicine show run by Dr. A. Locksley Hall which includes the attractive Denver. Along the way however, they are also joined by Shiloh Clegg and his murderous clan of robbers and thieves. An encounter with the Navajo leads to an invitation to their camp but after one of the Clegg boys gets a whipping for attacking one of the Navajo women, Uncle Shiloh plans his revenge. It’s left to Sandy and Travis to protect the travelers and get them to their destination.
Another Great Western of John Ford
Wagon Master In Crystal City, a group of Mormons hire the horse traders Travis (Ben Johnson) and Sandy (Harry Carey Jr.) as wagon masters to lead their caravan to San Juan River. Along the journey, they meet first the broken wagon without water of the quack Dr. A. Locksley Hall (Alan Mowbray) and the prostitutes Denver (Joanne Dru) and Fleuretty Phyffe (Ruth Clifford). Then the sadistic outlaws Clegg boys decide to join the Mormon caravan to disguise the patrol leaded by the Sheriff of Crystal City that is chasing them. When the Navajos cross their path, they are invited to visit their hamlet for a dancing party. When the wagon train is near to their destination, the Clegg boys threaten the settlers, forcing Sandy and Travis to take an attitude.
“Wagon Master” is another great western of John Ford. The sequences with the wagon train crossing the desert and the hills are impressive. The adventure of the group of Mormons is funny and very entertaining and the songs fit well to the plot despite being dated. My vote is eight.