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The Best Movies Directed by John Ford

Updated September 30, 2020 4.8k votes 374 voters 21.4k views

List of all movies directed by John Ford ranked from best to worst with photos. Films directed by John Ford are listed here and include movie posters and John Ford movie trailers whenever possible. This is a collection of the best movies directed by John Ford as voted on by film buffs. If you think the greatest John Ford movie isn't as high as it should be on this list, then make sure to vote so that your opinion of what the top John Ford film is can be factored into this list.

From John Ford's studio films to John Ford's independent films, this John Ford filmography keeps tabs on all John Ford movies, and lets the cream of the crop rise to the top.

The list you're viewing has a variety of movies, like The Searchers and Stagecoach, in it.

If you’re wondering “what movies did John Ford direct?” or “who is John Ford?” then this list will explain how most people know this director. This list also answers questions like “what are the all-time best movies directed by John Ford?” and “what's a good selection of good John Ford movies?”

If you're wanting to get into John Ford films, then this list is a great starting point for at least starting with the most decent John Ford works.

All John Ford director credits are included. This list of every movie that John Ford has directed can be sorted for specific information such as what genre the John Ford movie is and which actors starred in the John Ford film.

Make sure to re-rank this list so you can share it with your friends and measure how your social network would rank these movies. {#nodes}

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    The Searchers

    John Wayne, Natalie Wood

    Released1956

    Directed byJohn Ford

    The Searchers is a 1956 American Technicolor VistaVision Western film directed by John Ford, based on the 1954 novel by Alan Le May, and starring John Wayne as a middle-aged veteran who spends years...  more

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    #44 of 197 The Best Adventure Movies#13 of 451 The Best Movies For Guys

  • 2
    101
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    The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance

    John Wayne, James Stewart

    Released1962

    Directed byJohn Ford

    The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance is a 1962 American Western film directed by John Ford starring James Stewart and John Wayne. The black-and-white film was released by Paramount Pictures. The...  more

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    #6 of 401 The Best Western Movies Ever Made#28 of 175 The Best Movies Of The '60s

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    The Quiet Man

    John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara

    Released1952

    Directed byJohn Ford

    The Quiet Man is a 1952 American romantic comedy-drama film directed by John Ford. It stars John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Barry Fitzgerald, Ward Bond and Victor McLaglen. The screenplay by Frank S....  more

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    #25 of 50 The Best Movies Based on Short Stories#128 of 152 Movies That Should Never Be Remade

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    The Grapes of Wrath

    Henry Fonda, John Carradine

    Released1940

    Directed byJohn Ford

    The Grapes of Wrath is a 1940 drama film directed by John Ford. It was based on John Steinbeck's 1939 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name. The screenplay was written by Nunnally Johnson and...  more

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    #789 of 1,506 The Most Rewatchable Movies#67 of 174 The Most Utterly Depressing Movies Ever Made

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    Fort Apache

    Henry Fonda, Shirley Temple

    Released1948

    Directed byJohn Ford

    Fort Apache is a 1948 American Western film directed by John Ford and starring John Wayne and Henry Fonda. The film was the first of the director's "cavalry trilogy" and was followed by She Wore a...  more
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    She Wore a Yellow Ribbon

    John Wayne, Ben Johnson

    Released1949

    Directed byJohn Ford

    She Wore a Yellow Ribbon is a 1949 Technicolor Western film directed by John Ford and starring John Wayne. The academy award winning film was the second of Ford's Cavalry trilogy films. With a budget...  more

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    #933 of 1,195 Every Oscar Winning Film Ever#38 of 99 The Most Patriotic Movies of All Time

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    Stagecoach

    John Wayne, John Carradine

    Released1939

    Directed byJohn Ford

    Stagecoach is a 1939 American Western film directed by John Ford, starring Claire Trevor and John Wayne in his breakthrough role. The screenplay, written by Dudley Nichols, is an adaptation of "The...  more

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    #23 of 225 The Best Black and White Movies Ever Made#22 of 102 The 100+ Best Movies Streaming On The Criterion Channel

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    Rio Grande

    John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara

    Released1950

    Directed byJohn Ford

    Rio Grande is a 1950 Western film directed by John Ford and starring John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara. The picture is the third installment of Ford's "cavalry trilogy," following two RKO Pictures...  more

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    #20 of 63 The Best Western Movies of the 1950s#5 of 98 The Best John Wayne Movies Of All Time

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    Mister Roberts

    Henry Fonda, Jack Lemmon

    Released1955

    Directed byMervyn LeRoy, John Ford, Joshua Logan

    Mister Roberts is a 1955 American Warnercolor in CinemaScope comedy-drama film directed by John Ford and Mervyn LeRoy and features an all-star cast including Henry Fonda as Mister Roberts, James...  more

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    #129 of 136 The Best Movies Based On Plays#247 of 306 The Best Ensemble Movies

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    7 Women

    Anne Bancroft, Woody Strode

    Released1966

    Directed byJohn Ford

    7 Women, also known as Seven Women, is a 1966 film drama made by MGM. It was directed by John Ford, produced by Bernard Smith and John Ford, from a screenplay by Janet Green and John McCormick, based...  more
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    Wagon Master

    James Arness, Ben Johnson

    Released1950

    Directed byJohn Ford

    Wagon Master is a 1950 Western film about a Mormon pioneer wagon train to the San Juan River in Utah. The film was conceived, produced, and directed by John Ford, who is often listed among the...  more
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    The Long Gray Line

    Maureen O'Hara, Tyrone Power

    Released1955

    Directed byJohn Ford

    The Long Gray Line is a 1955 American Technicolor drama film in CinemaScope directed by John Ford based on the life of Marty Maher. Tyrone Power stars as the scrappy Irish immigrant whose 50-year...  more
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    My Darling Clementine

    Henry Fonda, Walter Brennan

    Released1946

    Directed byJohn Ford

    My Darling Clementine, a 1946 film, regarded as one of the best Western movies made by Director John Ford, stars Henry Fonda as Wyatt Earp during the period leading up to Gunfight at the OK Corral....  more

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    #139 of 205 The Best Movies of 1940#22 of 25 The Top 25 Must-See Quintessential Western Movies

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    Two Rode Together

    James Stewart, Shirley Jones

    Released1961

    Directed byJohn Ford

    Two Rode Together is a western film directed by John Ford, and starring James Stewart, Richard Widmark, and Shirley Jones. The supporting cast includes Linda Cristal, Andy Devine, and John McIntire....  more
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    How Green Was My Valley

    Maureen O'Hara, Roddy McDowall

    Released1941

    Directed byJohn Ford

    How Green Was My Valley is a 1941 drama film directed by John Ford. The film, based on the 1939 Richard Llewellyn novel, was produced by Darryl F. Zanuck and scripted by Philip Dunne. The film...  more

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    #7 of 96 Great Period Movies Set in the 19th Century#69 of 93 The Very Best Oscar-Winning Movies For Best Picture

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    The Iron Horse

    George O'Brien, J. Farrell MacDonald

    Released1924

    Directed byJohn Ford

    The Iron Horse is a 1924 American Western silent film directed by John Ford and produced by Fox Film. In 2011, this film was deemed "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" by the...  more
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    They Were Expendable

    John Wayne, Donna Reed

    Released1945

    Directed byRobert Montgomery, John Ford

    They Were Expendable is a 1945 American film directed by John Ford and starring Robert Montgomery and John Wayne and featuring Donna Reed. The film is based on the book by William L. White, relating...  more

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    #100 of 376 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked#41 of 55 The Best Memorial Day Movies

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    3 Godfathers

    John Wayne, Ward Bond

    Released1948

    Directed byJohn Ford

    3 Godfathers is a 1948 American Western film directed by John Ford and filmed primarily in Death Valley, California. The screenplay, written by Frank S. Nugent and Laurence Stallings, is based on the...  more
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    Sergeant Rutledge

    Woody Strode, Jeffrey Hunter

    Released1960

    Directed byJohn Ford

    Sergeant Rutledge is a 1960 Western and military courtroom drama starring Woody Strode and Jeffrey Hunter. It was directed by John Ford and shot on location in Monument Valley, Utah. The film starred...  more
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    Mogambo

    Grace Kelly, Clark Gable

    Released1953

    Directed byJohn Ford

    Mogambo is a 1953 American adventure/romantic drama film directed by John Ford and starring Clark Gable, Ava Gardner and Grace Kelly and featuring Donald Sinden. The film was adapted by John Lee...  more
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    How the West Was Won

    John Wayne, James Stewart

    Released1962

    Directed byHenry Hathaway, George Marshall, John Ford, Richard Thorpe

    How the West Was Won is a 1962 western film written by James R. Webb and John Gay and directed by John Ford, Henry Hathaway, George Marshall and Richard Thorpe....  more

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    #131 of 549 The Greatest Epic Movies Ever Made#58 of 306 The Greatest Movie Themes

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    Donovan's Reef

    John Wayne, Lee Marvin

    Released1963

    Directed byJohn Ford

    Donovan's Reef is a 1963 American film starring John Wayne. It was directed by John Ford and filmed on location on Kauai, Hawaii. The cast included Elizabeth Allen, Lee Marvin, Jack Warden, Dorothy...  more
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    Steamboat Round the Bend

    Will Rogers, Eugene Pallette

    Released1935

    Directed byJohn Ford

    Steamboat Round the Bend is a 1935 American comedy film directed by John Ford. The film stars Will Rogers and was released a few weeks after his death in an airplane crash....  more
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    The Long Voyage Home

    John Wayne, Barry Fitzgerald

    Released1940

    Directed byJohn Ford

    The Long Voyage Home is a 1940 American drama film directed by John Ford. It features John Wayne, Thomas Mitchell, Ian Hunter, Barry Fitzgerald, Wilfrid Lawson, John Qualen, Mildred Natwick, and Ward...  more
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    The Hurricane

    Dorothy Lamour, Mary Astor

    Released1937

    Directed byStuart Heisler, John Ford

    The Hurricane is a 1937 film set in the South Seas, directed by John Ford and produced by Samuel Goldwyn Productions, about a Polynesian who is unjustly imprisoned. The climax features a special...  more