TFAC continues Film Series with The Searchers

Published 9:58 am Monday, November 8, 2021

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Continuing its “Back to the Big Screen” series, the 1956 Technicolor, VistaVision epic The Searchers, will be shown at Tryon Fine Arts Center on Tuesday, November 9 at 7 p.m.


Named by the American Film Institute as “The Greatest American Western”, The Searchers was also deemed “culturally, historically and aesthetically significant” by the U.S. Library of Congress and was one of the first films to be selected for preservation in the Library’s National Film Registry.  

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox


Directed by John Ford, the story, based on the novel by Alan La May, is set during the Texas-Indian conflicts that took place not long after the American Civil War.  It stars John Wayne as Ethan Edwards, a Confederate veteran who returns to his home in Texas.  Shortly after his return, tragedy strikes the family that eventually propels Ethan into a desperate search for his abducted niece Debby, played by eight-year-old Natalie Wood.   


In 2013, author Glenn Frankel wrote prior to a special showing of the film in Washington, “The Searchers,” . . . is set in the waning days of the 40-year struggle between Texans and Comanches — the longest war ever fought on American soil — and it unflinchingly depicts the terrible price that each side inflicted on the other. But the 1956 movie is anything but a museum piece. It explores themes of gender, race and sexual violence that are stunningly modern.”


While it received few awards when first released, over the years it has received numerous accolades including being cited by the British Film Institute as “one of the greatest films of all time” and in 2001 critic Roger Ebert gave the film an updated review, saying:  “John Ford’s “The Searchers” contains scenes of magnificence, and one of John Wayne‘s best performances. There are shots that are astonishingly beautiful.”


TFAC’s doors and the lobby bar will open thirty minutes before the movie begins.  For information on the Film Series and other events at TFAC, call 828-859-8322 or visit


Submitted by Marianne Carruth