I like John Wayne just fine, including his views on America, I just don’t delude myself in thinking of him as a great actor to be mentioned in the panoply of the likes of Tracy, Bogart, etc. His films were entertaining for the most part but there were some stinkers in there, too.
Perhaps “secular goal” was stretching the point. Maybe “peace of mind” and “fire insurance” might have better communicated my point.
Bogart, Tracy and Wayne were great actors - all in very different ways. Usually, the “bad acting” problems with these actors had to do with miscasting forced by the studio system: Wayne as Genghis Khan, Tracy in “Tortilla Flat” and “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde,” and Bogie in “Racket Busters”.
Think of Katharine Hepburn - a truly brilliant film actress who ended up being listed as “box office poison” because of the bad roles she took.
I’ve always felt that there were no brilliant actors - only brilliant performances.
And as someone who has twice watched Wayne’s performance as Ethan in “The Searchers” this weekend - that is one brilliant performance.