The Undefeated (1969 film)
1969 Theatrical Poster
|Directed by||Andrew V. McLaglen
John Wayne (uncredited)
|Produced by||Robert L. Jacks|
|Written by||James Lee Barrett|
|Music by||Hugo Montenegro|
|Cinematography||William H. Clothier|
|Edited by||Robert L. Simpson|
|Distributed by||20th Century Fox|
The Undefeated is a 1969 American Western film directed by Andrew V. McLaglen and John Wayne (uncredited) and starring John Wayne and Rock Hudson. The film portrays events surrounding the French Intervention in Mexico and is also loosely based on General J. O. Shelby's escape to Mexico after the Civil War and his attempt to join with Maximilian's forces.
After the American Civil War, Union Colonel John Henry Thomas (John Wayne) and company attack a group of Confederate soldiers, only to be informed after defeating them that the war had ended days ago. Another group of Confederate soldiers, led by Colonel James Langdon (Rock Hudson) prepare to join Emperor Maximilian of Mexico. Langdon torches his plantation before he departs rather than have it fall into the hands of carpetbaggers. At the same time, Thomas, with his adopted Indian son Blue Boy (Roman Gabriel) and his surviving command, brings a herd of 3,000 horses across the Rio Grande for sale in Durango, Mexico.
Halfway there, Blue Boy notices that the tracks of a group of bandits indicate that they are planning an ambush on a group of travelers. Blue Boy and Thomas go to warn the travelers, who turn out to be the Confederates. Together the Americans repel a group of Mexican bandits who attack the Confederate wagon train.
The two factions meet at a Fourth of July party and relive the war through a drunken brawl. They then split and go their separate ways. Meanwhile, Langdon's daughter and Blue Boy have fallen in love.
When Langdon's company reaches Mexican Republican General Rojas (Antonio Aguilar), he holds the Southerners hostage for Thomas' horses. Thomas orders the herd to stampede into the General's camp as ransom payment for their former enemies. As the crowd ride out of the camp the people finally have common ground as they all listen to Yankee Doodle Dandy.
- John Wayne as John Henry Thomas
- Rock Hudson as James Langdon
- Roman Gabriel as Blue Boy
- Antonio Aguilar as Rojas
- Lee Meriwether as Margaret Langdon
- Melissa S. Newman as Charlotte Langdon
- Marian McCargo as Ann Langdon
- Merlin Olsen as Little George
- Bruce Cabot as Jeff Newby
- Jan-Michael Vincent as Bubba Wilkes
- Ben Johnson as Short Grub
- Edward Faulkner as Capt. Anderson
- Harry Carey, Jr. as Soloman Webster
- Paul Fix as Joe Masters
- Royal Dano as the one-armed Confederate major
- Richard Mulligan as Dan Morse
- John Agar as Christian
- Dub Taylor as McCartney
Merlin Olsen plays the blacksmith Little George. Both Gabriel and Olsen were pro-football all-stars for the Los Angeles Rams. Olsen continued his acting and sports announcing after his gridiron days were over.
The stunt co-ordinator was Hal Needham, later a film director.
The film earned $4.5 million in rentals in North America.
- Solomon, Aubrey. Twentieth Century Fox: A Corporate and Financial History (The Scarecrow Filmmakers Series). Lanham, Maryland: Scarecrow Press, 1989. ISBN 978-0-8108-4244-1. p255
- "The Undefeated, Box Office Information". The Numbers. Retrieved May 26, 2012.
- The New York Times http://movies.nytimes.com/movie/51706/The-Undefeated/overview. Missing or empty
- "Big Rental Films of 1969", Variety, 7 January 1970 p 15
- O'Flaherty, Daniel C. General Jo Shelby: Undefeated Rebel, University of North Carolina Press, 1954; ISBN 0-8078-4878-6; republished, 2000.
- The Undefeated at the Internet Movie Database
- The Undefeated at the TCM Movie Database
- The Undefeated at AllMovie