Watched Rio Bravo again, John Wayne’s reaction to High Noon.
Just entertainment but with a beautiful score from Tiomkin. Would Morricone be influenced by hid Deguello? If not, directors might have point it out to him that they would like a similar piece.
Watched Rio Bravo again, John Wayne’s reaction to High Noon.
That can be frustrating to watch - I’m not multi-lingual, but I do understand some French, Spanish & Italian … enough at least it seems to spot when the subs aren’t translations of what’s actually being said … it’s also a big annoyance when it’s an older film and or set in an earlier time period, and what you’re reading is North American 21st century speak, “Dude!”, “Awesome!” … “She’s so hot!” etc “OMG, Like that ‘dude’ was truly the son of God!” … Awesome, man!
I have the basics down for Italian and French too, I’m a bit better with Italian cause I’ve watched so many Italian language films for about 10 or more years, and I’ve found certain Italian words correspond somewhat to the English alphabet, so it makes watching the German editions without English subs a lot easier. The only Italian I’ve never been able to get is the slang terms, they just go over my head.
French I got good with cause when I was first into DVDs I used to turn on the French subtitles to see what the French called a bunch of varied items (including the swears as a teenager )
Finally watched La Taglia e Tua… l’Uomo l’Ammazzo Io! aka El Puro, not a bad little SW. While more focused on character in story and character rather than action, the story and characters are rich and interesting enough to keep the viewer curious and entertained. It’s definitely slow in spots, but not so slow that it feels like it drags. Robert Woods’ acting chops are on fine display here, making this and Black Jack his top 2 roles. as to the final 2 or 3 minutes, well… I didn’t hate it and it totally fits Woods character’s outlook, but at the same time felt it was kind of tacked on and made a certain character look a little more cowardly and snake like than his partners.
One of the better “drunk gunfighter” movies in the genre but needed more Rosalba Neri to be truly great in my opinion.
Directed magnificently by Martin Ritt (‘Hud’), in 1967, and starring Paul Newman, Richard Boone, Martin Balsam, Diane Cilento, and Fredric March, this has always been one of my favourite Westerns.
Based on a highly-readable novel by Elmore Leonard, (‘Valdez is Coming’), ‘Hombre’ is eminently watchable, and boasts a script that is as cool as the main character.
As with all good Westerns, a sneering bad-assed villain is a must, and the legendary Richard Boone more than caters for this.
As a bonus, it’s nice to see TV’s ‘The High Chaparral’ regulars, Cameron Mitchell, and Frank Silvera making much welcome appearances as members of the gang.
It’s interesting, also, to note that another cast member, Margaret (Maggie) Blye, went on two years later to appear alongside Michael Caine in the iconic ‘The Italian Job’ (1969)
All in all, ‘Hombre’, IMHO, is one of the most ‘intelligent’ Westerns ever made, and touches empathetically upon the prejudice existing between the native Indians and the Whites.
Yep, excellent western, and totally underrated nowadays compared to the usual classics. Probably it is only cause Ritt is a forgotten name?
Yeah, its a good one for sure
Followed on from ‘Hombre’ with another memorable adaption of a superb Elmore Leonard story… 1971’s ‘Valdez is Coming’.
Directed by Edwin Sherin, and filmed in some instantly recognisable beautiful Almeria desert locations, Burt Lancaster stars as a Mexican sheriff, Bob Valdez, who is forced to kill a black man wrongly accused by land-owner Frank Tanner of being a murderer.
Valdez asks Tanner for monetary help for the man’s wife, but he is ridiculed and almost killed by Tanner’s henchmen. However, they have picked on the wrong Mexican, and what follows is a Western vaguely reminiscent of ‘First Blood’.
As with ‘Hombre’, ‘Valdez’ yet again ably deals with the issues of prejudice, but this time aimed against ‘inferior’ Mexicans. It is rather gratifying when the aggressors comprehend that their main target is anything but inferior…He is more a one-man army who hates injustice against individuals, or a people.
Burt Lancaster, as watchable as ever, is accompanied by familiar faces which include Frank Silvera (‘Hombre’), Susan Clark, Richard Jordan, and Jon Cypher.
All in all, this is a first-class ‘Oater’, and would make a wonderful double-bill with either the aforementioned ‘Hombre’, or even Lancaster’s equally bloody ‘Lawman’ (1971).
Directed in 1972 by Mark Rydell (‘On Golden Pond’), I regard ‘The Cowboys’ as one of John Wayne’s finest Westerns.
When his ranch-hands desert him, Wil Anderson (Wayne), is reluctantly forced to hire on schoolboys to move his cattle herd.
Thus, the film provides plenty of opportunity for the ageing Wayne to ‘bond’ with his new-found ‘sons’.
A stellar cast also includes Roscoe Lee Brown, as the black cook (and voice of mediation) between the eager, but inexperienced boys, and the tough-as-nails Wayne character.
An added bonus comes in the forms of the ever-reliable Slim Pickens (‘Dr. Strangelove’); and a particularly reprehensible rustler out to steal the herd - played with professional expertise by Bruce Dern, at his most delightful nasty best.
One scene, in particular, between Wayne and Dern, would go down in the annals of Western lore, and mark Bruce Dern out as one of the most vicious SOB’s to ever grace the screen.
With a truly magnificent music score provided by renowned composer, John Williams, ‘The Cowboys’ is a darn good film, which features John Wayne approaching the end of days - sadly ailing from cancer, but still undeniably at his towering, commanding best.
’SHANE’ (1953), Directed by George Stevens
Starring Alan Ladd (in his most famous role); Van Heflin, Jean Arthur, and Jack Palance, there is nothing more to say about this truly majestic Western, that has not been said a million times before.
Beautiful, meticulously filmed, with memorable performances, and a gorgeous soundtrack, this classic sagebrush saga is one of the best Westerns ever made, and is a must-see for anyone who loves an engaging tale of good vs bad…land-barons vs homesteaders.
Mention, I feel, must be made of the superlative ‘natural’ sound effects in ‘Shane’. Each crash, bang and wallop, as in Leone’s ‘OUATITW’, is amplified to the tenth degree…gunshots, breaking glass, and livestock kicking over a milk pail.
There is also a pervading sense of peril hanging over the proceedings, never more so than when a homesteader is gunned down mercilessly, and is left to drown in a sea of blood and mud. The viewer can inwardly wince as the bullet strikes home…one of the few early Western instances where the impact of a 45 slug can literally be seen and felt.
All in all, a once-seen, never forgotten film that remains in the memory long after the final iconic scene fades away. This is an endearing frontier tale of hardship, friendship, loyalty, hero-worship, and justice overcoming tyranny and injustice.
An exquisite experience, which is best savoured on Bluray…
I’ve had a real Spaghetti itch this past week so I’ve made a nice dent in my watchlist. All of these are first time watches:
- Dead Men Don’t Count 7/10
- Man Who Cried for Revenge 6/10
- Four of the Apocalypse 6/10
- Once Upon a Time in the West 9/10 (yes - it really did take me this long to finally watch it)
- The Belle Starr Story 5/10
- The Hills Run Red 7/10
- A Bullet for the General 8/10
you’re kidding? you had never seen it before? wow. congrats, welcome to the real world
Yeah I know right. I started watching it about a year ago but turned it off after about an hour cause I was tired. I just never resumed it lol
You didn’t know what you’d been missing, did you?
My spaghetti western itch continues on another week with all first time watches. According to my Letterboxd list, I’ve now watched 94 SWs. I’m still deciding what I’ll watch for my 100th.
- Tepepa 6/10
- Forgotten Pistolero 6/10
- Sonny and Jed 8/10
- Dead Men Ride 7/10
- Seven Guns for the MacGregors 8/10
- Days of Violence 7/10
- Taste of Killing 5/10
Tepepa being a mere 6/10? Did you watch the uncut version?
I watched the 2 hour 11 min version. I just thought it was quite boring compared to the other big Zapata westerns like Bullet for the General, The Mercenary, Companeros etc - while also showing less interesting ideas and opinions on revolution. I also felt that Orsen Welles was giving a very half-arsed performance and I don’t really think that Milian’s usual eccentric performance worked in this one. I did enjoy the ending though, showing that the cycle of revolution will always continue.
One of the things I enjoy most about this site is how we can all see different movies in different ways. We may not agree (specifically about The Forgotten Pistolero and Taste of Killing ) but I enjoy seeing differing opinions anyway. What did you think was “meh” about those two?
Got done watching two westerns about Lindo Mexico.
The first was Hardcase.
A film about a American war veteran who gets involved in the Mexican Revolution when his wife ran off with a Mexican Revolutionary. Just the right length and I found it funny sometimes. I love westerns set in the early 20th century
The other was Adios Sabata. The 2nd film in the Sabata series. I didn’t really expect I would like it but I was wrong, I did enjoy it. The things that bother me were the anachronisms. Though I shouldn’t expect historical accuracy.