Rio Grande actor John Wayne had a temper that would occasionally rear its ugly head. However, that isn’t to say that there weren’t people that could still speak through to him. Wayne had outbursts on Rio Grande that scared some of those on the set, but one of his female co-stars had the innate ability to control him and ensure that he was able to cool off.
Carolyn McGivern’s John Wayne: A Giant Shadow discussed Rio Grande and the other pursuits over the course of his career. The book pointed out that the actor was an “inept lover” because of his affairs but Hollywood saw a shift in his casting thanks to his on-screen romantic presence with his co-stars. Directors liked to cast him alongside women with “charm and spirit,’ and he ultimately developed his ability to portray passion, loneliness, and world-weariness.
Frequent Wayne collaborator John Ford admired how the actor expressed sadness in a way of loss rather than shedding tears as many other performers did. Rio Grande was an excellent opportunity for Wayne to show another side of himself on the silver screen while still maintaining the macho imagery that the actor stuck to throughout his career.
McGivern wrote that Rio Grande actor Maureen O’Hara was one of the only folks who could control Wayne’s undeniable temper. The Ford movie was the first time that the two actors co-starred in the same picture. Nevertheless, they had immediate and undeniable chemistry between them, both physically and emotionally.
“Maureen O’Hara is one of the most delightful, charming women that I have ever had the pleasure of meeting,” Wayne said. “I enjoy every minute of working with her. She is a professional, and she comes ready to work.”
Wayne treated O’Hara as his equal on the set of Rio Grande and loved the way that she spoke her mind in such a straightforward way. When Wayne lost his temper on the set, O’Hara “pointed an accusing finger in his direction, and shouted, ‘Go and sit down for a while until you cool off.’”
Rio Grande gave Wayne the opportunity to show his ability to display loneliness within the context of lost love. As a result, the actor further developed his acting ability. Wayne earned praises for his Rio Grande performance, although the critical and audience reception was mixed.
The movie earned a 71% approval critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes and 70% from audiences. Some reviewers suggested that it’s a “minor” motion picture for Ford, Wayne, and O’Hara, calling it non-essential viewing. Nevertheless, others call it “uncomplicated” entertainment that is familiar yet perfectly serviceable filmmaking.
proc. by MOVIES