The Searchers (film)

The Searchers is a 1956 American Technicolor VistaVision Western film directed by John Ford, based on the 1954 novel by Alan Le May, set during the TexasIndian Wars, and starring John Wayne as a middleaged Civil War veteran who spends years looking for his abducted niece Natalie Wood, accompanied by his adoptive nephew Jeffrey Hunter. Critic Roger Ebert found Waynes character, Ethan Edwards, one of the most compelling characters Ford and Wayne ever created.

It is 1868. Ethan Edwards Wayne returns after an eightyear absence to the home of his brother Aaron Walter Coy in the wilderness of West Texas. Ethan fought in the Civil War on the side of the Confederacy, and in the three years since that war ended he apparently fought in the Mexican revolutionary war as well. He has a large quantity of gold coins of uncertain origin in his possession, and a medal from the Mexican campaign that he gives to his eightyearold niece, Debbie played as a child by Lana Wood. As a former Confederate soldier, he is asked to take an oath of allegiance to the Texas Rangers he refuses. As Rev. Captain Samuel Clayton Ward Bond remarks, Ethan fits a lot of descriptions.Shortly after Ethans arrival, cattle belonging to his neighbor Lars Jorgensen John Qualen are stolen, and when Captain Clayton leads Ethan and a group of Rangers to recover them, they discover that the theft was a Comanche ploy to draw the men away from their families. When they return they find the Edwards homestead in flames. Aaron, his wife Martha Dorothy Jordan, and their son Ben Robert Lyden are dead, and Debbie and her older sister Lucy Pippa Scott have been abducted. ........

Source: Wikipedia