What are John Wayne's Top 5 Movies?

John Wayne starred in over 200 movies, most of which were westerns.  While the western was his specialty, he did play in war movies, police dramas and others.  Whether he played a rancher, sheriff or gunfighter, he was generally the good guy in the movie.  His job was usually to clean the town of the local ruffians.  Below is a list of his five best movies.

5:  “Sands of Iwo Jima” (1949).  Wayne plays a tough Sergeant Stryker.  He must take a raw, untrained squad of marines and get them ready for battle.  The film follows this squad from boot camp all the way to Iwo Jima.  This is one of the few films in which John Wayne’s character dies.

4:  “Rio Bravo” (1959).  Wayne stars as Sheriff John Chance.  Chance is holding a man in jail for committing a murder.   Unfortunate for Chance, the man he is holding is the brother of a powerful local.  The rancher hires many gunmen to break him out of jail.  Chance and his 3 deputies must fight off the gang of gunfighters and maintain peace in the small border town.

3: “The Longest Day” (1962).  Wayne stars as Colonel Vandervoort who in command of a regiment of American paratroopers.  He lands behind enemy lines immediately prior to the Normandy invasion.  This film portrays the events surrounding the D-Day invasion.  It consists of a montage of true stories about individual heroism and achievement on the day of the invasion.

2:  “Rio Lobo” (1970).  Wayne portrays Colonel Cord McNally.  McNally is in the Union army during the end of the American Civil War.  He has a traitor in his command.  After the war ends, he is assigned the task of finding this traitor and bringing him to justice.  Along the way, he travels to Texas where he rids the town of the local bad guys who rule the town with an iron fist.

1: “The Searchers” (1956).  John Wayne stars as a Texas Ranger.  His niece has just been kidnapped by renegade Indians.  Wayne and a small group of Rangers spend the next ten years searching for the missing girl.  Wayne plays Ranger Ethan Edwards and is torn between his love for his niece and his anger at her transformation into a member of the Indian tribe.

Other excellent movies include “They Were Expendable”, “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance”, “Green Berets”, “The Cowboys” among countless others.  John Wayne, who along with Clint Eastwood, epitomizes the classic cowboy in the western movie.