Sergeant Rutledge
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The first big budget Western to feature a black hero, this military courtroom drama from director John Ford starred his long-time stock player Woody Strode. When a cavalry commander and his daughter are discovered murdered, racism amidst the 9th Cavalry immediately leads to suspicions that Sergeant Braxton Rutledge (Strode), a black man, is responsible for the crime. Arrested by Lieutenant Tom Cantrell (Jeffrey Hunter), Rutledge escapes from captivity during an Indian raid but voluntarily returns to warn his fellow cavalrymen that they are about to face an ambush by hostiles, saving the… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Extraordinary Western works at all levels, as rousing story telling, visual beauty and Civil Rights drama."
‑ Michael E. Grost, Classic Film and Television
"Effective anti-racist western from Ford."
‑ Ken Hanke, Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
"Noted as the first major Hollywood western to feature an African-American hero."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"An astonishing film not only for its sheer visual and narrative excellence but also for its early acknowledgement of race relations in America."
‑ Jeffrey M. Anderson, Combustible Celluloid
More reviews for Sergeant Rutledge on Rotten Tomatoes