(aka 'Fort Bravo')

Directed by John Sturges
USA 1953

 

Escape from Fort Bravo (1953) is a classic western, shot in Death Valley and New Mexico, and set during the Civil War. William Holden plays a Union captain guarding a group of Confederate prisoners. The prisoners escape, Holden goes after them, and all of them face a climactic Indian attack.

After seven years as a director and four years at MGM, John Sturges had built a career "of solid and prolific mediocrity," according to DuPre Jones, in his study of Sturges' work (1974, Films and Filming). With Escape from Fort Bravo, Sturges broke out of that rut, and found his niche as "a very good action director with a near-genius for staging gunfights." In Escape from Fort Bravo, Sturges meticulously builds the tension towards one of those long, complex and exciting climaxes which would become a trademark of Sturges hits like Gunfight at the OK Corral (1957), The Magnificent Seven (1960), and The Great Escape (1963).

Excerpt from TCM located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: December 9th, 1953

Reviews       More Reviews       DVD Reviews

DVD Review: Warner - Region 1, 3 - NTSC

DVD Box Cover

   

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Also available in Warner's Home Video Western Classics Collection with Escape from Fort Bravo / Many Rivers to Cross / Cimarron 1960 / The Law and Jake Wade / Saddle the Wind and The Stalking Moon.

         

Distribution Warner Home Video - Region 1, 3 - NTSC
Runtime 1:38:24 
Video 1.85:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.6 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s 

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate:

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0) 
Subtitles English, French, None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Warner

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio 1.85:1

Edition Details:

• Trailer (3:24)

DVD Release Date: August 26th, 200
8
Keep Case
Chapters: 10

 

Comments:

Single-layered and sourced from a terribly filthy print this image quality doesn't look very strong at all. Detail may be better than The Law and Jake Wade - also from the Warner's Home Video Western Classics Collection but this really needed an extensive cleaning before being put to digital. Colors and contrast are acceptable but noise and artifacts abound - so between that and the dirt it makes for an under-achieving transfer. It's progressive and anamorphic, coded for regions 1 + 3.

Only a 2.0 channel audio option but dialogue is consistent and clear - supported by English or French subtitles. the only extras is a 3.5 minute trailer.

Escape From Fort Bravo is an above-average cavalry-western fighting with Indians and each other while on the entitled journey. Love interest Parker makes for an interesting conflict and suspenseful ending sequence with curmudgeon William Demarest. It's obvious that Sturges is one of the masters of the genre. Yes, I enjoyed the film despite the weak transfer and you can't really complain about the price. The film value though gives it positive encouragement for the entire Warner's Home Video Western Classics Collection which, at this point, we surely recommend!

NOTE: We've covered Escape from Fort Bravo , Cimarron 1960, The Law and Jake Wade and The Stalking Moon so far  

Gary W. Tooze

 



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DVD Box Cover

   

CLICK to order from:

Also available in Warner's Home Video Western Classics Collection with Escape from Fort Bravo / Many Rivers to Cross / Cimarron 1960 / The Law and Jake Wade / Saddle the Wind and The Stalking Moon.

         

Distribution Warner Home Video - Region 1, 3 - NTSC




 

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