Tag Archives: The Searchers

Review of ‘The Searchers’

The war is over. The Americans have won. After three years, they have re-established the political machinery and defeated an insurgency. Awakening Councils of Concerned Local Citizens (financed by the Americans) keep the peace. Except for the odd SpecOps raid, the American military is nowhere to be seen.

The insurgent is home from the war. He fought the Americans, fled when the choice was surrender, and after the end of major combat operations took to irregular fighting. What remains of the insurgency, however, has degenerated into banditry and thievery. The insurgent is suspiciously wealthy, but has no use for his ribbons and medals. There is nothing left to fight for. The war is over.

Then intercommunal violence flares up. A cycle of kidnaping, rape, murder, corpse desecration, human trafficking, and honor killings begins.

It’s Texas, 1868.

The Searchers is a family-friendly movie in a sense that has disappeared from cinema. The story is incredibly dark, but most of the action happens off-screen. The attention of children watching the movie would be drawn to the colorful characters, interesting locations, and strange accents, while teenagers would be drawn to a love story involving the heartthrobs of yesteryear and some classic cowboy-and-indian fighting. But adults will see a post-war that’s shockingly nihilistic and lonely.

The Searchers with John Wayne is available from Amazon, Greencine, and Netflix.