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John Wayne as hero or bloody-minded slave-driver? In this case I side with John Ford over Howard Hawks and pick Stagecoach. It's fun, it's got great action sequences and comes to a definitive end, while Red River just sort of trickles to a close.
Yeah, Red River does sputter a bit towards the end. Just for that, Stagecoach wins.
Stagecoach is like watching John Wayne in the minors. Interesting to see with great potential - the future is bright but it can't compare to his later work.
Red River by a yard....
Wayne's performance in Red River is stronger, but the ending is so dumb and the female characters are so poorly handled ... I give it to Stagecoach for being a better overall package.
I'm going to switch over to Red River here, even though Stagecoach is an incredible film. I've learned to appreciate Red River's awesomeness.
Red River is superb even though Stagecoach is a break through film.