If you have spent any time watching old time westerns, you have seen this scene many times before, probably in black and white. It is the quintessential landscape that defines the wild west. The point from which I took this shot is known as John Ford Point, where he shot a scene from the 1939 movie, "The Searchers" where an American Indian village is attacked.
Haven't seen any of the old westerns? Here are some other times that Monument Valley has been in the media:
- The rock band Eagles used Monument Valley on the cover of their 1985 UK Best of album.
- The 2003 Led Zeppelin DVD features the West Mitten of Monument Valley on the cover.
- The film 2001: A Space Odyssey features footage of Monument Valley.
- In the movie Forrest Gump, Forrest ends his cross-country run here.
- The film Thelma & Louise features some shots of Monument Valley,
- The video for "I Disappear" by Metallica was partially shot in Monument Valley.
- The opening shots of Mission: Impossible II feature Monument Valley.
- The film National Lampoon's Vacation features footage of Monument Valley.
- In Back to the Future Part III Marty McFly drives from 1955 to 1885 from a drive-in theatre set at the Valley's base.
There are plenty of other famous films (Easy Rider, Once Upon a Time in the West, Electra Glide in Blue, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, The Lone Ranger, A Million Ways to Die in the West); TV commercials; television shows; video games; music videos; and album art that feature Monument Valley.
So it is very likely that everyone has seen Monument Valley even though they haven't been there. Take my advice, no matter where you have seen it, nothing does it justice that seeing it with your own eyes.