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General Discussion => General (Off-Topic) Discussion => Topic started by: George-2.0 on October 04, 2018, 02:52:35 AM

Title: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 04, 2018, 02:52:35 AM
It started here, in 1903…

https://www.youtube.com/v/zuto7qWrplc

In the 19-teens, William S. Hart became its first major star and Hell’s Hinges (1916) was arguably its first great feature. It continued from there, often in B-movie form, with serials and such, and action oriented stars like Tom Mix. There was an Oscar Best Picture win in the 30s (granted that film, Cimarron has not aged well). John Ford was around from the silent era on, to class it up from time to time, and Hawks entered the arena in the late 40s. But it wasn’t until the 50s that the Western exploded. It was a decade of classics, of Anthony Mann and Budd Boetticher - where western lore was de-mythologized, politicized, socialized and reexamined. This continued on in the 60s with Leone and the Italians, and into the violent 70s, marked by the work of Eastwood.

The genre started to fade in the 80s, but never disappeared completely. It even managed to win a few more Oscars.

Yes there is racism, and misogyny and gun violence. And yes John Ford was a mean drunk, John Wayne an extreme right winger and royal jackass (see his 1971 Playboy interview for proof). Those are the Elephants in the room. And there are several ways to approach them. Some apologize, others scold. Me, I just (try to) watch them as cinema. I wont ban talk of such things, it is a present characteristic. But please be respectful of one another, and lets not go overboard and completely derail the thread. Agreed?

In closing: The Western was about exploration, conflict, the bigger than life heroes and villains. It was about an untamed land, and it’s about these 50; er 51 motion pictures you’ve compiled for this list.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 04, 2018, 02:56:35 AM
#51 – THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES BY THE COWARD ROBERT FORD
”By his own approximation, Bob assassinated Jesse James over 800 times. He suspected no one in history had ever so often or so publicly recapitulated an act of betrayal.” - Narrator


https://www.youtube.com/v/nk0JaEwhf00
27 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #9 (CJones)

Director: Andrew Dominik

Stars: Brad Pitt, Casey Affleck, Sam Shepard, Mary-Louise Parker

Subgenre: Outlaw Western

Is The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford an ode to the first of its two title subjects, or a dirge about the second? Is it a loyal and authentic screenshot of history, or a folk-style retelling of historical events? Maybe it’s all of these. It’s certainly more than the sum total of the answers to the questions it poses, but above all else it’s a movie that attained near-instantaneous iconic status on its release. The film’s great achievement is its ease. You get the sense that Andrew Dominik didn’t make this movie as much as it simply flowed out of him, an anecdotal recount of a legend brought to his end by the toxic punch of hero worship and betrayal. The Assassination of Jesse James affixes intimate narrative to wide scope, as befits the commodious quality of the Western genre, and sets about getting to the promise of its name in as leisurely a fashion as possible. We know what’s coming, but the film is in no hurry to get there, and when the trigger is pulled minutes before the credits roll, the shot rings all the louder for it. - Andy Crump, Paste

Trivia:
Unlike most Westerns, the male characters don't wear Stetsons, but more period-appropriate derby and stovepipe hats. Jesse James wears a Homburg.

My Reflections:
As we were coming down to the final day, I was noting a couple of well regarded westerns that hadn’t receive a single vote. This was one of them… until the final 2 lists came in, then “Bippity Boppity Bob” Ford’s suddenly making the grade. And what a great movie to open the thread with.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 04, 2018, 03:01:09 AM
#50 – GODLESS
“This ain’t my death. I’ve seen my death; this ain’t it.” - Frank Griffin


https://www.youtube.com/v/CrlZCRncCwA
27 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #5 (MartyS [Gromit])

Director: Scott Frank

Stars: Jack O'Connell, Michelle Dockery, Scoot McNairy, Merritt Wever, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Tantoo Cardinal, Kim Coates. Sam Waterston, Jeff Daniels

Subgenre: Outlaw Western Drama

Summary: A ruthless outlaw terrorizes the West in search of a former member of his gang, who’s found a new life in a quiet town populated only by women.

"Vistas and violence root Godless firmly in traditional Western territory, but its female-driven ensemble sets it apart in a male-dominated genre." - Rotten Tomatoes

"Every moment counts, making for an overall experience as to-the-point as Mary Agnes herself. Even when it appears to be taking some extra time for itself, "Godless" isn't wasting a second." - Ben Travers, IndieWire

Trivia:
The show uses a town La Belle (also known as LaBelle) an actual town that was located in Taos County, New Mexico, USA, around the turn of the 20th century.

My Reflections:
I recently caught this miniseries after Netflix offered me a free month streaming. Godless packed a wallop and -boosted by some top notch, Emmy winning acting- held me in thrall throughout it’s 7 hr run time.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 04, 2018, 03:03:33 AM
#49 - PALE RIDER
”And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the fourth beast said: "Come and see." And I looked, and behold a pale horse. And his name that sat on him was Death. [the Preacher rides up on his pale horse] …and Hell followed with him” - Megan Wheeler


https://www.youtube.com/v/ePlyWlhobDU
27 points on 3 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #8 (MartyS [Gromit])

Director: Clint Eastwood

Stars: Clint Eastwood, Michael Moriarty, Carrie Snodgress, Chris Penn, Richard Dysart, Sydney Penny, Richard Kiel

Subgenre: Revisionist Western

The first mainstream Western to be produced after the colossal critical and financial bust of 1980’s Heaven’s Gate wound up the most successful of its ilk for that decade. Director-star Clint Eastwood’s oater owes as much to Biblical scripture as to the 1953 classic Shane, following another Man with No Name, the enigmatic “Preacher” who helps defend a mining camp from a greedy interloper during the California Gold Rush. Of the title’s referencing the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, Eastwood’s character is a supernatural entity lifted directly from the Book of Revelation, Death itself riding in on four legs from the Sierra Nevada—Eastwood called his clerical collar-wearing vigilante “an out-and-out ghost.” Pale Rider paints its not-so-mysterious parable of divine retribution in moody tableaux—sometimes heavenly, others more akin to a hellish, light-starved descent—and with Eastwood’s inimitable economy of dialogue. He’s not on screen here as much as in entries like The Outlaw Josey Wales and Unforgiven, but his avenging loner is felt at all times. Just like the Johnny Cash spiritual “The Man Comes Around,” Eastwood’s preacher man is never not around these parts. - Amanda Schurr, Paste

Trivia:
The first horse assigned to Richard Kiel collapsed the first time he climbed aboard. He was then assigned a stronger horse.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 04, 2018, 03:07:03 AM
So that's a taste of what's to come.

I hope to work on write-ups and post a few more on Friday. Not sure about the weekend. Sat is usually my task day (then Svengoolie), Sunday my brother and I are seeing Venom and then catch the Seahawks game. But I’ll see if I can squeeze out a couple.

BTW: We will have a special guest on this LOC. I figure If Anais could invite her mom for her stellar Beatles list, that it would be okay to ask a letterboxd pal to contribute. His name is Travis and he's a good guy with great taste in film - and a fellow Western movie fan. If you'd like to follow him, this is his page... https://letterboxd.com/travis_c/ (https://letterboxd.com/travis_c/)  He could be lurking as we speak, so be on your best behavior. No spittin’, er cussin’ er carryin’ on with the dance hall girls. ;)

Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: MartyS (Gromit) on October 04, 2018, 07:44:24 AM
Glad Godless made the list, it's amazing on many levels.  I've been a fan of Michelle Dockery since she played Susan in Hogfather.  Jeff Daniels character is nightmare inducing with his casual evilness, he certainly deserved the Emmy he won for it. 
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: PsychoGoatee on October 04, 2018, 02:53:40 PM
Cool, good to see the countdown, and good to see Clint show up already. I actually haven't seen that one, or a couple other big American ones of his.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 04, 2018, 03:48:52 PM
Glad Godless made the list, it's amazing on many levels.  I've been a fan of Michelle Dockery since she played Susan in Hogfather.  Jeff Daniels character is nightmare inducing with his casual evilness, he certainly deserved the Emmy he won for it.

Yeah it was perfectly cast. and Daniels' character was an interesting mix of evil and at certain times, compassion.

As an aside... while Robert Ford received all its points on the last day of voting, Godless got its on the first.

I'd also seen each of these 3 entries in different ways: On DVD, Streaming and in the Theater (Pale Rider)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Johnny Unusual on October 04, 2018, 03:51:55 PM
Pale Rider was a bit lower on my list, but it still made it.  It's been a while since I've seen it, though, so maybe if it was fresher in my memory it would have been higher.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: MartyS (Gromit) on October 04, 2018, 09:40:06 PM
Yeah it was perfectly cast. and Daniels' character was an interesting mix of evil and at certain times, compassion.

I haven't rewatched the entire thing but have rewatched several parts of it a few times, and I've come to think there was no compassion in him, he was pure evil.  Anything that seemed like compassion was either a means of control or a manifestation of his preacher delusion.  Make the sick people feel better before you slaughter them was just the part of the messed up value system he had in his head.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 04, 2018, 11:32:52 PM
#48 – VERA CRUZ
”Ben Trane. I don't trust him. He likes people, and you can never count on a man like that.” - Joe Erin


https://www.youtube.com/v/WMdfaMcg2as
28 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #7 (Charles Castle)

Director: Robert Aldrich

Stars: Gary Cooper, Burt Lancaster, Denise Darcel, Cesar Romero

Subgenre: Western set in Mexico

Despite informing the look and swagger of ‘The Magnificent Seven’, the scope and violence of ‘The Wild Bunch’ and the arch cynicism of Sergio Leone’s soupy Spaghettios, ‘Vera Cruz’ is not as well remembered as many of its contemporaries. Perhaps it has to do with the departure from traditional western themes. - Adam Lee Davies, Time Out

Highly influential on much of Sam Peckinpah’s work, specifically The Wild Bunch, and many of the Italian Westerns made the following decade, Robert Aldrich’s deeply cynical and pessimistic Vera Cruz is one of the most entertaining and complex of the classic American Westerns. Burt Lancaster—who worked with Aldrich on Apache and later on Ulzana’s Raid—and Gary Cooper play a bandit and a mercenary, respectively, who get involved in a little gunrunning, gold thievery and romance down Mexico way. There are multiple double-crosses between Lancaster and Cooper, and Aldrich keeps things lively while always twisting the tension further. Lancaster’s terrifying sociopathic smile doesn’t convince anyone he’s on the side of good, unlike Cooper’s stubborn insistence to remain pure above all the backstabbing … until he doesn’t any longer. Released in 1954, Vera Cruz eagerly shook off the uncomplicated romanticism that typified so much of the genre up to that point, and anticipated the bloody cinematic mayhem to come. - Derek Hill, Paste

Trivia:
For being made in the mid 1950s, this film has a quite fast cutting rate. In ninety minutes of action, it contains about one thousand one hundred thirty edits and other transitions. This equates to an average shot length of just under five seconds.

My Reflections:
Castle to the rescue! Once again Charles helps get a film on the LoC. His list might have been the last, but it wasn’t the least. As the only other voter for this under-seen gem (from Robert Aldrich, who’s best known for Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?), I was quite thrilled. Seriously, if you’re a fan of the type of Westerns mentioned above, I highly recommend this one.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 04, 2018, 11:33:56 PM
#47 – NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN
”What's the most you ever lost on a coin toss.” - Anton Chigurh


https://www.youtube.com/v/38A__WT3-o0
29 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #11 (Johnny Unusual)

Director: The Coen Brothers

Stars: Tommy Lee Jones, Javier Bardem, Josh Brolin, Kelly Macdonald, Woody Harrelson, Garret Dillahunt, Tess Harper, Barry Corbin, Beth Grant

Subgenre: Contemporary Western

An American crime thriller film written and directed by Joel and Ethan Coen, based on Cormac McCarthy's 2005 novel of the same name. The film revisits the themes of fate, conscience, and circumstance that the Coen brothers had explored in the films Blood Simple (1984) and Fargo (1996). - Wiki

But is it a western? Neo, Contemporary, Gothic… or not at all. It’s been debated back and forth, and as wiki points out… even the directors have weighed in. Joel Coen found the film "interesting in a genre way; but it was also interesting to us because it subverts the genre expectations." He did not consider the film a western because "when we think about westerns we think about horses and six-guns, saloons and hitching posts." But co-director Ethan said that the film "is sort of a western," before adding "and sort of not."

Trivia:
In the novel, Sheriff Bell says of the dope-dealers, "Here a while back in San Antonio they shot and killed a federal judge." Cormac McCarthy set the story in 1980. In 1979, Federal Judge John Howland Wood was shot and killed in San Antonio by Texas free-lance contract killer Charles Harrelson, father of Woody Harrelson (Carson Wells).
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 04, 2018, 11:34:58 PM
#46 – THE GUNFIGHTER
”How come I've got to run into a squirt like you nearly every place I go these days?” - Jimmy Ringo


https://www.youtube.com/v/yFqQAK6l6QE
30 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #6 (Cole Stratton)

Director: Henry King

Stars: Gregory Peck, Helen Westcott, Milard Mitchell, Jean Parker, Karl Malden, Skip Homeier

Subgenre: Outlaw Western

If you’re a gunfighter, you schedule your life around shootouts in the wide-open streets of dusty old frontier towns. It’s what you do. But what happens when you leave that life and that life refuses to leave you? What do you do when you are the sum of your reputation, a target for the latest young quick drawin‘ upstart on the block to challenge, and nothing more? Well, you kill those young quick drawin‘ upstarts as they come at you, albeit with a healthy dose of reluctance. The Gunfighter is a doleful little ditty, quick, to the point, jam-packed with incident, and shaped by its tone as much as its action—plus Gregory Peck’s jawsome, bitter, remorseful leading performance. It’s Darwin’s kind of Western, a movie where the fastest survives but in which surviving and living don’t exactly line up with one another. - Andy Crump, Paste

Trivia:
Based on the life and exploits of an actual western gunslinger named John Ringo, a distant cousin of the outlaw Younger family. The real Ringo was a ruthless murderer and survivor of the infamous gunfight at the OK Corral, against (Dr.) John Holliday, Wyatt Earp and the Earp brothers. Also unlike the movie's account, the actual John Ringo--his real name--suffered a severe bout of melancholy following a visit to his family in California in July of 1882 and went on a monumental ten-day alcoholic binge, which climaxed when he sat down under an oak tree, drew his gun and used it to commit suicide.

My Reflections:
I rewatched this after seeing the title pop up on several “Best Of” lists. And while I didn’t add it to mine, it’s a goodie. Henry King was a workman-like director, who struck gold at least twice. With Tol’able David (one of my favorite silent features) and decades later with The Gunfighter.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 04, 2018, 11:36:23 PM
#45 – 7 MEN FROM NOW
”All that stands between me and 25 thousand dollars… is you” - Bill Masters to Ben Stride


https://www.youtube.com/v/Zuhp1YXXUvI
29 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #9 (Fred Garvin)

Director: Budd Boetticher

Stars: Randolph Scott, Lee Marvin, Gail Russell, Stuart Whitman, Walter Reed

Subgenre: Traditional Western

If there’s one job you really wouldn’t want in the Old West, it was the driver of the Wells Fargo stage, its cargo of bullion and paper money so often a magnet for any dirty outlaw in the vicinity. Budd Boetticher casts Randolph Scott as Ben Stride, a melancholy ex-sheriff who’s taken to the prairie to administer lead-flavoured justice to the seven men responsible for his wife’s death during a bungled bank robbery.

On the way, he links up with a lovable couple doing the manifest destiny thing by heading to California and quickly becomes their de facto protector. For a film that barely clocks in at 80 minutes, Boetticher crams the material with ironies, ambiguities and moral conundrums. But the slow release of information and the tentative building of friendships (and enemies) mean that the stakes change minute by minute.

Lee Marvin delivers a stupendous, proto-Liberty Valance supporting turn as a man always open to taking advantage of a yeller-belly, and in one near-unwatchable scene, proceeds furtively to humiliate the husband with the aim of fleeing with the wife. Scott, of course, sees to it that he doesn’t. - David Jenkins, Time Out

Trivia:
John Wayne gave the female lead to Gail Russell, his co-star from Angel and the Badman (1947) and Wake of the Red Witch (1948). He did so despite being warned that she looked twenty years too old to play a character in her mid-twenties. Russell had not made a film in five years and had a serious drinking problem which would later end her life at the age of 36.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 04, 2018, 11:41:14 PM
#44 – RANGO
”No man can walk out of his own story.” - Spirit of the West


https://www.youtube.com/v/k-OOfW6wWyQ
30 points on 4 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #8 (CJones)

Director: Gore Verbinski

Stars: Johnny Depp, Isla Fisher, Abigail Breslin, Alfred Molina, Bill Nighy, Harry Dean Stanton, Ray Winstone, Timothy Olyphant, Ned Beatty, Beth Grant

Subgenre: Animated Comedy Neo-Western

Starring Johnny Depp as a neurotic pet chameleon who sets out into the unforgiving desert to discover his true meaning (just how can you stand out when your very biology asks that you blend in?), on paper Rango should be an average children’s film, but in actuality is a hilarious, charming and very Western adventure film that is dream Sunday night viewing. - Finlay Renwick, Esquire

Trivia:
During the scene in which Rango describes the Spirit of the West to the townspeople by drawing images in the sky with a smoldering stick, it is possible to spot the logo of American rock band KISS, Imperial Tie Fighters from Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977), a shark fin, a dinosaur, and a "Kilroy was here" drawing for a brief moment.

My Reflections:
If you’ve ever thought to yourself, “Gee, I’d like to watch Chinatown, but with ugly animated animals instead. (and without the incest)” then this is the film for you! It’s a cute flick, with a neat blending of a plot from a classic modern Noir movie with Western stylings, conceits - and many Easter Eggs for fans of the genre.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 05, 2018, 02:23:25 AM
THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES BY THE COWARD ROBERT FORD - I haven't seen this since it came out at the cinema. I really liked it, but my recollection of it is a bit hazy, and so it sat just outside of my top 25. (BTW, George, there's a typo in the title of this one. You're one S short)

GODLESS - This looks great, but we've got a pretty hardline 'no rape/sexual violence in our entertainment' policy these days. That's gonna exclude us from watching a few other films int his list too. This isn't a judgement on those who don't mind, it just absolutely ruins things for us.

PALE RIDER - As above (attempted rape anyway)

VERA CRUZ - Never seen this one. Great director and great stars. Will try to get to it one day.

NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN - Love the film, but I'm of the 'this is not a western' leaning, so it didn't make my list.

THE GUNFIGHTER - Another one I haven't seen. Has been on my to watch list awhile.

RANGO - I found the middle of this movie to drag, unfortunately. I liked a lot of it, but not enough.

So, none of mine so far, but a couple of movies I'm keen to check out.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: MartyS (Gromit) on October 05, 2018, 07:29:41 AM
GODLESS - This looks great, but we've got a pretty hardline 'no rape/sexual violence in our entertainment' policy these days. That's gonna exclude us from watching a few other films int his list too. This isn't a judgement on those who don't mind, it just absolutely ruins things for us.

I've seen other comments similar to this and I have to ask:  So you would watch it if it didn't have those two 15 second scenes, when there are hours of brutality elsewhere?  Entire towns get wiped out by the bad guys.  People have said they didn't have to show those 2 scenes, true, but that could be said for all of the murdering, wouldn't generate the same hatred of the gang if they simply had a narrator explain what they did.

I would understand if it was a trigger, and I know some people that won't watch it because of the level of violence in general, but for others it seems an arbitrary line to draw given the overall brutality in the story.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: CJones on October 05, 2018, 08:42:11 AM
My Reflections:
If you’ve ever thought to yourself, “Gee, I’d like to watch Chinatown, but with ugly animated animals instead. (and without the incest)” then this is the film for you! It’s a cute flick, with a neat blending of a plot from a classic modern Noir movie with Western stylings, conceits - and many Easter Eggs for fans of the genre.

That reminds me, I really need to watch Chinatown one of these days.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: ColeStratton on October 05, 2018, 01:38:49 PM
Really glad "The Gunfighter" made it -- it's a gem and it's overlooked by a lot of people. Peck is fantastic in it. I'll be interested to see how this list shakes out, my list is a mix of mainstream stuff and lesser known classics.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 05, 2018, 02:32:04 PM
GODLESS - This looks great, but we've got a pretty hardline 'no rape/sexual violence in our entertainment' policy these days. That's gonna exclude us from watching a few other films int his list too. This isn't a judgement on those who don't mind, it just absolutely ruins things for us.

I've seen other comments similar to this and I have to ask:  So you would watch it if it didn't have those two 15 second scenes, when there are hours of brutality elsewhere?  Entire towns get wiped out by the bad guys.  People have said they didn't have to show those 2 scenes, true, but that could be said for all of the murdering, wouldn't generate the same hatred of the gang if they simply had a narrator explain what they did.

I would understand if it was a trigger, and I know some people that won't watch it because of the level of violence in general, but for others it seems an arbitrary line to draw given the overall brutality in the story.

Yes
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Johnny Unusual on October 05, 2018, 02:34:42 PM
Rango was at the very bottom of my list.  Not a slight to it, I do think it's a weird little film and I like that there's sort of an ugliness to it.

And Chinatown is very good.

No Country For Old Men made my list.  I get why people would see it as a not Western, though, not because of the relatively modern day setting (I always forget if it's set in the 70's or 80's) but because the structure is a little more in line with a thriller.  It's sort of why I think of Jaws and Psycho as an adventure movie and a thriller, respectively, but totally get that the horrorific elements make some people define it as horror.

Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 05, 2018, 10:40:24 PM
Psycho's not horror? Funny I mention that movie in a write up due soon. For me it's not really a thriller, but psychological horror, and the father of the modern slasher film. So yeah I guess we all have our own definitions.

Neo-westerns can be tricky. I generally stayed away from them for my list (though I do recognize them as part of the Western family).  I have one contemporary on mine, and considered Logan for a spell, as it has Western threads running through it.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 05, 2018, 11:55:37 PM
#43 – MAVERICK
”How do you know he was nice? We don't know anything about him. The only thing he's got in his wallet is a bunch of names of whorehouses.” - Annabelle


https://www.youtube.com/v/mQ69CVbCiow
31 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #5 (Linzoid)

Director: Richard Donner

Stars: Mel Gibson, Jodie Foster, James Garner, Graham Greene, Alfred Molina, James Coburn, Geoffrey Lewis, Danny Glover, Dan Hedaya

Subgenre: Comedy Western

Maverick is a 1994 American western comedy film written by William Goldman. Based on the 1950s television series of the same name created by Roy Huggins, the film stars Mel Gibson as Bret Maverick, a card player and con artist collecting money to enter a high-stakes poker game. He is joined in his adventure by Annabelle Bransford (Jodie Foster), another con artist, and lawman Marshall Zane Cooper (James Garner). The supporting cast features a large number of cameo appearances by Western film actors, country music stars and other actors.

Released theatrically by Warner Bros. on May 20, 1994 the film was a critical and commercial success, grossing over $183 million worldwide. It was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Costume Design. - Wiki

Trivia:
Near the movie's beginning, Maverick asks the young man wearing the bowler hat at the poker table, who claims to be a gunfighter, what his name is. He answers, "Johnny Hardin," and Maverick fumbles his chips pretending to be scared, but then clowns around pointing his own gun at the youth. The real John Wesley Hardin was a notoriously fast, volatile and deadly gunfighter of the Old West, who shot and killed more than 40 men, before being shot in the back of the head--by a man he had hired to kill someone else--and killed in 1895.

My Reflections:
Hmm, a surprise entry. I did not see this one coming. But because of its inclusion, I put in a hold on it at the library, give it a try (I never was a fan of the TV series, which is why I’ve skipped it all these years)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 05, 2018, 11:56:50 PM
Mr. Bungle Bonus Write-Up!
THE TALL T
”Come on now. It's gonna be a nice day.” - Pat Brennan, to the weeping Doretta, after he killed a few guys


https://www.youtube.com/v/S4SJ_NS1fS8
24 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #8 (George 2.0)

Director: Budd Boetticher

Stars: Randolph Scott, Richard Boone, Maureen O'Sullivan, Arthur Hunnicutt

Subgenre: Traditional Western

The second collaboration between director Budd Boetticher and actor Randolph Scott, adapted by screenwriter Burt Kennedy from Elmore Leonard’s short story “The Captives,” is a gritty tale centered on a heist turned kidnapping. Frank Usher (Richard Boone) and his ruthless gang (Henry Silva pulling a sinister turn as the murderous Chink and Skip Homeier as the naive lunk, Billy Jack) mistake a privately chartered honeymoon stagecoach for the regular mail coach. Independent rancher Pat Brennan (Randolph Scott) goes from having a bad day—losing his horse in a wager and having to hitch a ride on the doomed honeymoon stagecoach—to worse, when he finds himself on the wrong end of the gun in a hostage situation. When it becomes clear the gang is going to kill everyone on the stagecoach and wait to rob the next one, newly married coward Willard Mims (John Hubbard), who obviously has wed for money over love, uses his plain wife, Doretta (Maureen O’Sullivan), as the bargaining chip to save his own hide. Her father just happens to be the richest man in the territory, so any ransom the gang demands is going to yield more than robbing a paltry stagecoach would.

The real love story, though, is between Scott and Boone. Tired of the small-minded men with whom he has cast his lot, Usher is fascinated with the stoic, self-reliant Brennan. He spares his life for no logical reason other than he likes him, constantly engages him in conversations to probe how he thinks about certain situations and, later, asks questions about his life and work. Usher sees in Brennan the man he could have been had circumstances not funneled him into the criminal life. Boetticher uses the twisted rock formations and arid landscapes of the Alabama Hills of Lone Pine, Calif. to bring out the starkness of the captivity situation. It takes resourceful, mentally strong and canny individuals to survive in that rugged country. By the end of The Tall T, both Brennan and Doretta have proven they have the grit and tenacity to overcome the most desperate of situations. - Joe Pettit Jr., Paste

Trivia:
During filming it was called "The Captives" (Elmore Leonard's original story title) and/or "The Tall Rider". Just prior to release, the title was changed to "The Tall T," the name of the Tenvoorde ranch in the early scenes.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 05, 2018, 11:57:51 PM
#42 – ONE-EYED JACKS
”Get up, you big tub of guts!” - Rio


https://www.youtube.com/v/R41AHe59UiU
33 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #7 (George 2.0)

Director: Marlon Brando

Stars: Marlon Brando, Karl Malden, Ben Johnson, Katy Jurado, Slim Pickens, Elisha Cook, Jr., Ray Teal, Hank Worden

Subgenre: Revisionist Western

A strange, troubled, underrated, masochistic Western. The production was problematic to say the least, compounded when the original director, Stanley Kubrick, was fired after butting heads with his star one too many times. Marlon Brando took over the directing duties, and it’s his vision and obsessions that permeate every tortured frame … not always to good effect. It’s certainly riveting in its psychological dimensions, however, and even when Brando is at his most excessive, the result is always fascinating and weird. Brando plays a tortured, revenge-minded gunslinger who goes up against his old friend who once betrayed him, played by Karl Malden. The movie’s seaside Monterey locale adds a distinctive presence to the otherwise angsty proceedings. Freud would have had a field day with this one. - Derek Hill, Paste

...The result is hypnotic. Rarely has the internal and external landscape been fused with such artistry within a western, as the film moves from the dust storms of Death Valley to the splendour of the Californian coast and the shifting morality of the characters locks into fatal certainty. It’s an old story, but through Brando’s eyes, the familiarity becomes elemental. - Adam Lee Davies, Time Out

Trivia:
Marlon Brando would sit near the ocean for hours, waiting for the waves to become more dramatic for his perfect shots. That’s the urban legend, used to illustrate Brando’s self indulgence. And while based on some truth. In reality he needed his shots to match. You couldn’t have violent crashing waves one moment, go to close up, then cut back to a relatively calm sea. (these costal scenes might have been filmed over the course of days or weeks)

My Review of the Remastered Criterion Release: https://letterboxd.com/captainquint/film/one-eyed-jacks/ (https://letterboxd.com/captainquint/film/one-eyed-jacks/)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 06, 2018, 12:07:26 AM
That's your Saturday trio... and you know, I've managed to bank a lot of these - and have come up with a daily schedule, so I will post Sunday, and everyday to the end.

So up next, several firsts to the list: 2 movies from one my favorite Western directors (and maybe one of yours). First apperances of two great western stars, and the first movie from Edward's list could, maybe show up. Tune in to see... Same Bat (Masterson) time! Same Bat (Masterson) forum!
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: MartyS (Gromit) on October 06, 2018, 12:20:16 AM
I forgot Maverick, been so long since I've seen it, oh well, it probably would have been near the bottom of my list so would have only added a couple of points.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 06, 2018, 03:18:05 AM
MAVERICK - I know I used to love this, but haven't watched it in 15+ years and can barely remember anything about it. (And Mel Gibson being in it makes me not in a rush to revisit)

THE TALL T - Never seen it.

ONE-EYED JACKS - Never seen it, although it's been on my radar since Criterion released it.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Johnny Unusual on October 06, 2018, 05:36:47 AM
MAVERICK - I know I used to love this, but haven't watched it in 15+ years and can barely remember anything about it. (And Mel Gibson being in it makes me not in a rush to revisit)

Exactly this.  It's also one of my best friends second favourite movie after Robin Hood: Men in Tights (which is weird because by and large he has excellent taste.  But nostalgia is a powerful drug).  I remember enjoying it and being a fun movie.  I didn't know William Goldman wrote it, but that totally makes sense.

Psycho's not horror? Funny I mention that movie in a write up due soon. For me it's not really a thriller, but psychological horror, and the father of the modern slasher film. So yeah I guess we all have our own definitions.

Yeah, I totally see how other people disagree with my assessment.  Of course, some movies don't fit easily into particular molds, which is why Psycho is so good.

Interestingly, me and a comic book owner had a civil but impassioned argument about where the comic book Black Hole is a horror series or not.  He says yes, but I feel that while it HAS body horror, it is more of a psycho-drama/coming of age story.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: CJones on October 06, 2018, 06:28:50 AM
I considered Maverick, but then I remembered I can't stand Mel Gibson.

I've never even heard of the other two.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 06, 2018, 06:54:11 AM
(https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-iQdai9QH69k/W7i9vCZCc9I/AAAAAAAAEjI/3q_tC_PUhOY9J9fEGUjnw0uhUV93e8cnACLcBGAs/s1600/7%2BMen%2Bfrom%2BNow%2BBudd%2BJohn%2BWayne%2BRandolph%2BScott.jpg)
John Wayne, Randolph Scott and Budd Boetticher

Speaking of The Tall T... I only recently caught the series of (relatively) low budget Budd Boetticher/Randolph Scott westerns (most written by Burt Kennedy) - Started watching them in 2017 and finished up with Westbound last week.

I've also been reading articles about Budd and learned that he directed the first three episodes of the television series Maverick. So that was an interesting connection between the 44th and 43rd films on the list.

And to think the teaming began because John Wayne was committed to the Searchers and couldn't do the other, Seven Men From Now, which he owned the rights to. So he signed Boetticher to direct, under the condition that he use Scott -whose career was floundering- as the lead. The rest was history, and lead to one of the genre's most memorable pairings.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 07, 2018, 12:04:51 AM
#41 – MAN OF THE WEST
”There's a point where you either grow up and become a human being or you rot, like that bunch.” - Link Jones


https://www.youtube.com/v/6vj_GP9jWOQ
34 points on 3 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #4 (George 2.0)

Director: Anthony Mann

Stars: Gary Cooper, Julie London, Lee J. Cobb, Jack Lord

Subgenre: Psychological Western

The last of Anthony Mann’s 1950s Westerns, Man of the West takes up where his earlier films left off: some years after his standard hero/antihero has finally settled into a normal life. Link Jones (Gary Cooper), a reformed outlaw and now family man, takes a trip to hire a schoolteacher for his small Texas town. Circumstances revolving around a bungled train robbery leave him stranded with two fellow passengers and literally lead him to his old gang’s front door. In order to survive and help keep Sam Beasley (Arthur O’Connell) and Billie Ellis (Julie London) from becoming the unfortunate victims of sadistically unhinged leader Dock Tobin (Lee J. Cobb), Jones assumes his old identity, pretending he just can’t stay away from a life of crime. Top-billed Cooper felt he was too old for the part. At the time he was a 56-year-old man playing someone who was supposed to be 20 years younger. However, his life experience brings an emotional gravitas to the part. Real regret pours through in his portrayal of a man forced to own up to where his missteps have led him on the path of life, and who struggles to stay honorable and true to himself while staring down the sins of his past. Easily the most harrowing and disturbing of Mann’s Westerns, and considered by some critics to be his masterpiece, Man of the West is an underrated jewel, as well as an important precursor to the psychologically compelling Westerns of the ’60s and ’70s. - Joe Petitt Jr, Paste

Trivia:
Gary Cooper was, at 56, a decade older than Lee J. Cobb who played his "Uncle" Dock Tobin. Even with heavy makeup, it is generally agreed that Cobb still looked younger than Cooper, and Cooper was actually about 20 years older than his character was supposed to be. In addition, Cooper and John Dehner talk about being children together, but Dehner was actually 14 years younger than Cooper.

Personal Reflections:
It’s funny that my favorite Mann western isn’t one with Jimmy Stewart, who he’s so linked with, but Gary Cooper, who’s kind of miscast here age-wise. But damn is he great. That scene where he does to Jack Lord, what Jack did to the woman - humiliate him, negate him sexually, is disturbing, but powerful. Probably Mann’s darkest western, and that’s saying a lot.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 07, 2018, 12:07:38 AM
#40 – WINCHESTER ‘73
”You never know when a girl might need a bullet.” - Lola Manners


https://www.youtube.com/v/42C_5qbCpoo
34 points on 4 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #11 (George 2.0)

Director: Anthony Mann

Stars: James Stewart, Shelley Winters, Dan Duryea, Stephen McNally

Subgenre: Psychological Western

Anthony Mann and James Stewart made five Westerns together from 1950 to 1955, starting with Winchester ’73, a movie about a cowboy and his gun. The very image of the cowboy is comprised of totems that range from horse to hat, but these characters generally have very particular relationships with their armaments. A cowboy bereft of his firearm is a man robbed of his lifeline—take away the pistol and suddenly he’s all too vulnerable to harm in hostile lands. The Western canon is full of stories of chases and quests, of people on missions to hunt down either the missing or the absconded, or to make their way to a better place and a better life. Winchester ’73 falls under the former category, except that it’s all about the search for the stolen rifle of the title in addition to the search for its thief. As Stewart’s character labors to track both down, the rifle becomes a kind of plot baton, passing from one party to the next and in doing so sparking strife among undeserving and covetous men. There are bad guys aplenty in this film, but the real villain turns out to be acquisitiveness. - Andy Crump, Paste

Trivia:
At the time of release there was some ridiculing from the press at the idea of James Stewart, the "thin man", playing a tough westerner. (Broken Arrow (1950) had not been released, even though it had been filmed first). Members of the audience were heard to gasp in shock at the scene where Stewart angrily confronts Dan Duryea.

My Reflections:
Johnny mentioned digging Leone, and judging by his list, Edward has a fondness for Ford, Me, I lean toward Mann. I think it’s the psychology, I seem to be drawn to that characteristic in movies. Whether it’s psychological horror (ala Hammer’s Paranoiac, Hitch’s Psycho), or the Freudian aspects found in Bunuel’s (and other surrealists) work. And that quality in the Western is sure to win my favor.

Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 07, 2018, 12:08:42 AM

#39 – THE PROFESSIONALS
”Maybe there's only one revolution, since the beginning, the good guys against the bad guys. Question is, who are the good guys?” - Bill Dolworth


https://www.youtube.com/v/kX_4XyUIZ4Y
36 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #1 (Cole Stratton)

Director: Richard Brooks

Stars: Lee Marvin, Burt Lancaster, Robert Ryan, Jack Palance, Woody Strode, Claudia Cardinale, Ralph Bellamy

Subgenre: Action/Adventure Western

A dream team of tough guys is enlisted by a rich old Texan to abduct the millionaire’s young wife back from a former Mexican Revolutionary in this spirited, star-studded adventure. Each hired hand has a specialized area of expertise: Army vet Lee Marvin knows weapons, Burt Lancaster does explosives, Robert Ryan wrangles horses, and Woody Strode is a skilled tracker. But as the mercenaries pursue Jack Palance’s bandit across the border, along with that paycheck from Ralph Bellamy’s tycoon, they learn that the particulars of the job are not as they seem. It’s a simple hook, thrillingly—and violently—executed. There’s terrific chemistry among the leads, Oscar-nominated writer-director Richard Brooks’ dialogue crackles, and fellow nominee Conrad L. Hall’s Technicolor images of the Southwest—practically the entire film takes place outdoors—are unsurprisingly exquisite. At one point, Bellamy’s wealthy jackass curses Marvin, “You bastard,” to which the professional replies, “Yes, sir, in my case an accident of birth. But you, sir, you’re a self-made man.” Part caper, part chase film, part traditional Western, The Professionals is fast-paced, action-packed fun. - Amanda Schurr, Paste

Trivia:
When Columbia first bought the rights, they planned for Gregory Peck, Frank Sinatra and Robert Mitchum to star.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 07, 2018, 12:09:33 AM
#38 – THE OX-BOW INCIDENT
”Hangin' is any man's business that's around.” - Gil Carter


https://www.youtube.com/v/NjvhQm3M6vc
37 points on 3 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #9 (Johnny Unusual)

Director: William A. Wellman

Stars: Henry Fonda, Dana Andrews, Harry Morgan, Anthony Quinn, Jane Darwell, William Eythe

Subgenre: Psychological Western

In discussing classic films that involve Henry Fonda as he struggles against a rash legal decision, 12 Angry Men is more than likely the film that instantly enters one’s mind. Fourteen years prior, however, Fonda starred in a significantly bleaker version of a similar story. Based on the novel of the same name by Walter Van Tilburg Clark, The Ox-Bow Incident serves as a dark voyage into the dangers of mob mentality and what happens when human emotion supplants the justice system. Fonda plays Gil Carter, an aimless traveler in the 1880s who—along with his companion Art Croft (Harry Morgan)—ends up riding into the wrong town at the wrong time. A local rancher has apparently just been murdered and the hunt is on to find those responsible—by whatever means necessary. Clocking in at a sparse 75 minutes, the film serves as a master class in dramatic escalation, with Gil and Art first joining the posse as a means of self-preservation only to watch as events mount beyond anyone’s control. Though now more than 70 years old, The Ox-Bow Incident’s portrait of a community driven to its worse self by fear and distrust is sadly more relevant than ever. - M.R., Paste

Trivia:
Although made in 1941, this sat on the shelf for two years as 20th Century-Fox had no idea how to market a film with such inflammatory politics.

This was the last movie ever nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture which received no other Academy Award nominations.

My Reflections:
It starts off rather humorously, then slowly and surely steamrolls to it’s heartbreaking end. It’s exquisitely orchestrated in script, direction and performance. I’m shocked it only earned a single Oscar nod. In my Alt-Oscar Blog I named Dana Andrews my Best Supporting Actor, I feel it’s one of his 2 finest efforts (the other, was for Best Years of Our Lives… Oscar didn’t nominate him for that either… he was the only male lead in Best Years not to garner a nod. Shame on you Oscar!)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 07, 2018, 12:21:57 AM
MAN OF THE WEST, WINCHESTER ‘73 and THE OX-BOW INCIDENT are more movies I've not gotten to yet, but, finally, one of my picks has made the list!

I was the other voter for THE PROFESSIONALS, which is just a tremendously fun movie.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 07, 2018, 12:31:05 AM
Yeah I remember enjoying the Professionals, and it's another with a stellar cast. I didn't write a reflection because it's been so long since I've seen it that I couldn't think of anything to add.

(And the answers to the "firsts" teaser was of course - Anthony Mann... James Stewart & Henry Fonda... and the Professionals.)


I'll be back early Monday with 4 more. Then I'll have to get back to working on writes ups for Tuesday (I have 2 of the 4 finished). 

Night all.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Johnny Unusual on October 07, 2018, 05:27:12 AM
I like to consider myself in the know with most movies but the Ox-Bow Incident is the only one of these I've heard of, so far.  It really is good though, and benefits greatly from it's short run-time.  It's a tight, heart-breaking film about the poisonous nature of the mob mentality.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 07, 2018, 05:48:52 AM
I like to consider myself in the know with most movies but the Ox-Bow Incident is the only one of these I've heard of, so far.  It really is good though, and benefits greatly from it's short run-time.  It's a tight, heart-breaking film about the poisonous nature of the mob mentality.

Really? You need to get on some Anthony Mann then, pronto!  ;)


Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: PsychoGoatee on October 07, 2018, 05:57:27 PM
It sounds cool! And I dig Henry Fonda, he's on my list a couple times.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 07, 2018, 11:55:33 PM
#37 – TRUE GRIT (1969)
”Fill your hand you son of a bitch!” - Rooster Cogburn


https://www.youtube.com/v/w4XxN1modZU
37 points on 3 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #8 (George 2.0)

Director: Henry Hathaway

Stars: John Wayne, Glen Campbell, Kim Darby, Jeremy Slate, Robert Duvall, Dennis Hopper, Strother Martin, Jeff Corey

Subgenre: Traditional Western

When you think of The Duke, what’s the first image that pops into mind? I’ll bet you he’s wearing an eye patch and a cowhide leather vest. Rooster Cogburn is arguably John Wayne’s most iconic role. The crusty, hard-drinking, hard-living, one-eyed U.S. marshal was launched into the Western film lexicon in 1969 in Henry Hathaway’s classic adaptation of Charles Portis’ classic novel. Chances are pretty good that Wayne’s portrayal will remain the definitive characterization despite an admirable and brilliant turn by Jeff Bridges in the 2010 remake by the Coen brothers.

At times woodenly acted (Glen Campbell) and downright dated by modern standards, the 1969 True Grit nevertheless has a primal power. It’s a coming-of-age story for young Mattie Ross (Kim Darby), a sharp-tongued quick-witted teenager, on a quest for revenge for her murdered father. She hires Rooster Cogburn to track down his killer, who has fled into Indian territory. Rooster admires her spunk, seeing reflections of himself in her stubbornness. Despite their prickly off-camera relationship, Wayne and Darby put aside those challenges and let the characters do the talking. Much of the movie’s beauty is in the deepening of their relationship, in Rooster’s protectiveness toward “Little Sis,” his appreciation and downright enjoyment of her pluck, and in Mattie’s wide-eyed admiration for her champion, a man with true grit. Never mind the many times he lets the bottle let her down. By the time Cogburn hauls snake-bitten Mattie on a desperate all-night journey through the wilderness, it’s hard not to be touched by his devotion and sheer determination to save Miss Ross’ life.

The remake is a fine movie in its own right. It has a smoother flow, is truer to the spirit of the novel, and feels grittier to our modern sensibilities. Yet at its best, it can’t escape the shadow of the original and often feels like it is emulating its elder. Isn’t that the sincerest form of flattery, though? - Joe Petitt Jr, Paste

Trivia:
Behind the scenes, everybody seemed to hate everyone in this movie. Wayne didn’t like Duvall, neither Hathaway nor Wayne liked Darby, Hathaway hated Campbell, and almost everybody hated Hathaway. Amazing the movie works as well as it does.

Personal Thoughts
I enjoyed the remake, in many ways it is the better film, and Hailee was a treasure. But there are still things the original does better. Like the relationship between Rooster and Mattie, you can see that he comes to genuinely care for her in a fatherly way. Or Cogburns cat (General Sterling Price) - as Chris Cabin from Collider stated, excising the General from the remake was a major misstep in detailing Cogburn’s pickled perspective and unpredictable empathy. And as great as Bridges is, his marble mouthed, limp delivery of the “Fill your hands” line made me sad. When the Duke delivered that quip the theater exploded into cheers, laughter and applause. (yes I’m old, I saw both in theaters. My dad took me to see the original… even though he wasn’t a fan of Wayne’s, he put up with him for the sake of his son. And despite his chuckling every time Glen Campbell attempted to act, we had a great time. It’s one of my fondest memories)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 07, 2018, 11:59:48 PM
#36 – LONESOME DOVE
[after beating a man nearly to death for hitting Newt he climbs on his horse and looks at the horrified towns people] “I hate rude behavior in a man. I won't tolerate it.” - Woodrow Call


https://www.youtube.com/v/m44NQUIOaiQ
38 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #3 (Cole Stratton)

Director: Simon Wincer

Stars: Robert Duvall, Tommy Lee Jones, Danny Glover, Diane Lane, Robert Urich, Frederic Forrest, D. B. Sweeney, Ricky Schroder, Anjelica Huston, Chris Cooper, Timothy Scott, Glenne Headly, Barry Corbin, William Sanderson, Steve Buscemi

Subgenre: Traditional Western

Yes, Lonesome Dove was a network television event, but this Peabody-awarded adaptation of Larry McMurtry’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel is a justified exception to the big-screen rule. Take its development: McMurtry’s original tome was based upon a 1972 screenplay he had co-written with Peter Bogdanovich for a film that was to star John Wayne, James Stewart and Henry Fonda; the project fell apart when John Ford advised Wayne against it. The author eventually bought back his script, penned the 800+-page book (which both John Milius and John Huston then tried to adapt as a feature), and in 1989 the six-hour epic was broadcast over four evenings, resurrecting the then-dormant Western (not to mention miniseries) and boasting an A-list cast of movie stars that was rare prior to the current golden age of TV: Robert Duvall, Tommy Lee Jones, Danny Glover, Diane Lane and Anjelica Huston, along with up-and-comers like Chris Cooper and Steve Buscemi. Lonesome Dove is a nostalgic yet matter-of-fact look at the rigors of the unforgiving wilderness, a soapy, satisfying romance and, most poignantly, a portrait of lifelong friendship. Aussie director Simon Wincer (Quigley Down Under) helms the saga of two former Texas rangers, Augustus McCrae (Duvall) and Woodrow Call (Jones), who decide on one last adventure, a treacherous cattle drive from the titular Texas border town to Montana in the late 1800s. Duvall and Jones turn in career-best performances. The sheer breadth of the storytelling on display here, and that masterful acting, makes you glad what could’ve been a feature film had the time to unspool on the small screen. - Amanda Schurr, Paste

Trivia:
Despite the huge ratings, and massive critical acclaim, it lost the 1989 Outstanding Miniseries Emmy Award to War and Remembrance (1988).

My Reflections;
Our second minseries: I remember thinking it a bit corney with the way it handled the western tropes at first. But I stuck with it, and it drew me in and I was hooked to the end.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 08, 2018, 12:01:19 AM
#35 – THE TREASURE OF THE SIERRA MADRE
”I know what gold does to men's souls.” - Howard


https://www.youtube.com/v/XZ8Q9mOYJgE
38 points on 4 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #3 (Johnny Unusual)

Director: John Huston

Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Walter Huston, Tim Holt, Bruce Bennett

Subgenre: Psychological Western

Greed is a recurring theme throughout the Western, whether in the scheming cynicism of Vera Cruz, the landowner conflicts of Once Upon a Time in the West and Shane, or in The Naked Spur, where greed is a divisive force. In John Huston’s The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, greed is corruptive. Greed corrodes your soul and poisons you against your comrades. Greed persuades you to yank your prospecting partner out of bed and shoot him in the dead of night. All that and more for bags of gold that wind up being tossed to the wind like so much chaff. It isn’t all ugliness and gloom—in one particularly noble gesture, Walter Huston’s Howard saves a kid’s life—and there are even a few laughs along the way (most of them Huston’s), but The Treasure of the Sierra Madre’s morality tale about the taint of avarice is deeply sobering as an anti-capitalist screed. - Andy Crump, Paste

Trivia:
Walter Huston, father of director John Huston, won the Academy Award for best supporting actor. John won for best direction. This was the first father/son win.

In his Oscar acceptance speech, Walter Huston said, "Many, many years ago, I brought up a boy and I said to him, 'Son, if you ever become a writer, try to write a good part for your old man sometime'. Well, by cracky, that's what he did!"

My Reflections:
I always laugh at the scene when Howard keeps insisting that the other 2 men eat some beans… “Hey you fellas, how 'bout some beans? You want some beans? Goin' through some mighty rough country tomorrow, you'd better have some beans.” only because it makes me think of that scene in Blazing Saddles. How ’bout more beans, boss… I think you boys have had enough!
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 08, 2018, 12:03:31 AM
#34 – BACK TO THE FUTURE PART III
”Great Scott!”


https://www.youtube.com/v/CwjfOWGYoMo
38 points on 4 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #3 (Linzoid)

Director: Robert Zemeckis

Stars: Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Mary Steenburgen, Thomas F. Wilson, Lea Thompson

Subgenre: Sci-Fi Comedy Western

Back to the Future Part III is a 1990 American science fiction Western comedy film and the third and final installment of the Back to the Future trilogy. The film continues immediately following Back to the Future Part II (1989); while stranded in 1955 during his time travel adventures, Marty McFly (Fox) discovers that his friend Dr. Emmett "Doc" Brown, trapped in 1885, was killed by Biff Tannen's great-grandfather Buford. Marty travels to 1885 to rescue Doc.

Back to the Future Part III was filmed in California and Arizona, and was produced on a $40 million budget back-to-back with Part II. Part III was released in the United States on May 25, 1990, six months after the previous installment. Part III earned $244.5 million worldwide, making it the sixth-highest-grossing film of 1990. - Wiki

Trivia:
Marty uses a "Frisbie's" pie plate to knock a gun out of Mad Dog's hand. In 1871, the Frisbie Pie Company started in Connecticut. Their pie pans were thrown on the campus of Yale, and this eventually lead to the invention of Frisbees.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: CJones on October 08, 2018, 03:35:42 AM
I was the other person with Lonesome Dove. I saw that when it originally aired. And by saw that I mean my Mom saw it and I also happened to be there. I was 13, and to be honest, I barely remember the plot. However, it still sticks in my mind as one of the best mini-series I've ever seen. I should watch it again.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 08, 2018, 09:17:29 AM
I was the other person with Lonesome Dove. I saw that when it originally aired. And by saw that I mean my Mom saw it and I also happened to be there. I was 13, and to be honest, I barely remember the plot. However, it still sticks in my mind as one of the best mini-series I've ever seen. I should watch it again.

It's well worth another viewing. And a 13-years-olds fond memories are alright to go on. It deserves a spot on the list for sure.

Fond memories is what put the original True Grit so high on my list. I liked the movie a lot, but the family bonding thing gives it that extra bump. I loved John Wayne movies as a kid, and while my family didn't watch a lot of award shows, I think everyone knew John Wayne was going to win the Academy Award, and I remember mom and pops letting me stay up to watch, part, or all of the Oscars just to see him win and to hear his speech.

Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 08, 2018, 11:46:29 PM
#33 – MY DARLING CLEMENTINE
”I've heard a lot about you, too, Doc. You left your mark around in Deadwood, Denver and places. In fact, a man could almost follow your trail goin' from graveyard to graveyard.” - Wyatt Earp


https://www.youtube.com/v/722ry-wBRsg
40 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #2 (Edward J. Grugg III)

Director: John Ford

Stars: Henry Fonda, Victor Mature, Linda Darnell, Ward Bond, Walter Brennan, Tim Holt

Subgenre: Traditional Western

John Ford’s lyrical and, at times, free-handed interpretation of the shootout between the Earps and the Clantons at the O.K. Corral stands as one the greatest of the old-school Hollywood Westerns to expertly explore themes of revenge, loss and the ever encroaching hand of civilization on the Western frontier. Thanks to the ongoing efforts of Old West historians, we now know that Ford’s romanticized account doesn’t bear much relation to historical truth, but it is mighty potent in poetic truth. The stately pace of life in Tombstone reflects the state of mind of the Earps, men hardened by action and dangerous situations returning to and trying to fit into a fairly calm haven. It also served as a timely allegory for soldiers returning to civilian life post World War II. The arrival of Clementine Carter (Cathy Downs) in Tombstone signifies opposing yet equally bleak meanings for Doc Holliday (Victor Mature) and Wyatt Earp (Henry Fonda). For Doc, she is a reminder of the innocence and respectability he has long left behind in his years of dissolute living. For Earp, she is a vision of the future he could have—a home, a wife, a comfortable life—but can’t bring himself to claim. The dedication of the new church with a square dance social, closely followed by the eruption of violence caused by the Earp-Clanton feud, brings the point home. Although evil has been driven out of Tombstone for now, Wyatt’s soul is still untamed. There is no way he can embrace the life of a solid, upstanding citizen. The final scene between him and Clementine leaves the door open should he heal his internal wounds and choose to return to her. - Joe Petitt Jr., Paste

Trivia:
The movie was featured in the TV series M*A*S*H episode M*A*S*H: Movie Tonight (1977). It was said to have been the favorite movie of Col. Sherman Potter.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 08, 2018, 11:49:12 PM
#32 – ULZANA’S RAID
”He don't mean to fight you no place, Lieutenant. He only wants to kill you.” - MacIntosh


https://www.youtube.com/v/UTeVqaFpcE4
44 points on 3 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #9 (George 2.0)

Director: Robert Aldrich

Stars: Burt Lancaster, Bruce Davison, Jorge Luke, Richard Jaeckel, Joaquín Martínez, Karl Swenson, John Pearce

Subgenre: Cavalry Western (revisionist or traditional. Sources disagree)

Released in the thick of the revisionist Western cycle of the late 1960s and early 1970s, Robert Aldrich’s powerful and savage movie is unjustly misunderstood as a reactionary response to films like Little Big Man, Soldier Blue and others. The Apaches, led by the tenacious Ulzana (Joaquin Martinez), are ruthless warriors, though also intelligent and methodical in their war strategizing. Aldrich and screenwriter Alan Sharp envisioned the movie as an allegory of the Vietnam War, raising some knotty moral quandaries for their lead characters—a naive cavalry lieutenant (Bruce Davison) determined to end the Apache guerrilla war through understanding, and a seasoned, battle-weary scout (Burt Lancaster) who knows the situation is long past that stage. Weighing the ethics of war while being attacked will only get you killed. Trying to do the right, compassionate thing will only cause more havoc and put your troops at greater risk of death. It’s a gritty, unromantic affair and the violence is appropriately ugly and jarring. - Derek Hill, Paste

Trivia:
The movie was from an original screenplay by Alan Sharp and was, in turn, based on a true story. Ulzana was an Apache in the time of Geronimo who went on a deadly raid in Arizona in late 1885.

There are two cuts of the film because Burt Lancaster helped to produce the movie. One version was edited under the supervision of Aldrich, the other by Lancaster. There are many subtle differences between the two although the overall running times are similar and most of the changes involve alterations of shots or lines of dialogue within scenes.

Gene Siskel and Vincent Canby of the New York Times named it one of the 10 best films of 1972
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 08, 2018, 11:51:21 PM
#31 – THE HATEFUL EIGHT
”When you get to hell, John, tell them Daisy sent you..” - Daisy Domergue


https://www.youtube.com/v/69UwVX6Riv8
44 points on 3 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #4 (PsychoGoatee)

Director: Quentin Tarantino

Stars: Kurt Russell, Channing Tatum, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Dern, Demián Bichir, Walton Goggins, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Zoë Bell, James Parks

Subgenre: Spaghetti-style mystery Western

“Looks can be deceiving,” says Michael Madsen to Kurt Russell upon first introduction in The Hateful Eight. No four words could be more appropriate to the moment, or to the movie, a sprawling film with an intimate core. More so than most marquee movies and tent poles claiming to be “epic,” it actually lives up to the word. There’s a pomp and grandiosity to the weight of the film—the cast is stupendous, the dialogue dazzles, disgusts and delights in equal measure, and the craftsmanship is peerless. Quentin Tarantino is chiefly interested in the exchanging of barbs and threats more than he is in action. Make no mistake, The Hateful Eight is insanely violent, but it’s fixated around violent talk and violent reverie before physical violence. Frontier justice does quench our thirst, but the themes of social justice that drive the film are more satiating by far. It all adds up to a towering work, as profound as it is profane. - Andy Crump, Paste

Trivia:
The guitar that Daisy Domergue (Jennifer Jason Leigh) played while singing "Jim Jones at Botany Bay" was a priceless antique from the 1870s, on loan from the Martin Guitar Museum. At the end of the song, the script called for John "The Hangman" Ruth (Kurt Russell) to grab the guitar and smash it to pieces. Six replicas were built for the shoot, and were supposed to be substituted for the real instrument for the smashing shot, but due to a miscommunication, Kurt Russell was not informed, and destroyed the original guitar before anyone could stop him. Jennifer Jason Leigh's shocked reaction to this is genuine, and can be seen in the released film. The Martin Guitar Museum subsequently announced they would never loan guitars to film shoots again.

As a guitarist myself, reading that story made me sick to my stomach.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 08, 2018, 11:54:08 PM
#30 –THE GREAT SILENCE
”Once, my husband told me of this man. He avenges our wrongs. And the bounty killers sure do tremble when he appears. They call him "Silence." Because wherever he goes, the silence of death follows” - Pauline


https://www.youtube.com/v/zLtqspNTAAo
45 points on 4 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #11 (Charles Castle)

Director: Sergio Corbucci

Stars: Jean-Louis Trintignant, Klaus Kinksi, Vonetta McGee, Frank Wolff, Luigi Pistilli

Subgenre: Anti-Western/Revisionist Western

Growing in stature as the years pass, the bleak majesty of Sergio Corbucci’s dark, complex meditation on the human cost of progress threatens to outstrip the bleached, hallucinatory, hyper-violent ‘Django’ as his crowning achievement.

Set in Utah during the Great Blizzard of 1899, it follows the mute Silence (Jean-Louis Trintignant), a hired gun with a particular interest in the state-sanctioned bounty hunters – exemplified by Klaus Kinski’s mannered, controlled, entirely deadly Loco – who are clearing the land of anyone who doesn’t have their finger in the pie.

Though overflowing with theological subtext and social indignance, it’s an uncommonly reserved film by spaghetti western (and Kinski) standards, but when that silence is broken, the noise and fury are truly something to behold. - Adam Lee Davies, Time Out

Trivia:
According to Sergio Corbucci, Marcello Mastroianni gave him the idea of a mute gunfighter when the actor told him that he had always wanted to do a Western, but unfortunately didn't speak English. When Corbucci first met Jean-Louis Trintignant, he learned that he didn't speak English either. Because he had a fascination with characters with a crippling weakness, Corbucci decided that this was the moment to turn the taciturn Spaghetti Western hero into a mute.

My Reflections:
Appropriate that this is grouped with the Hateful Eight, since that film references, or rather lifts scenes from this one. As the Time Out reviewer states, Silence has grown in stature, likely due to the restoration and disc release which allowed audiences to finally see the film as it was intend
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 09, 2018, 02:45:50 AM
So we got our first from Ford. Our second from Aldrich. I have Ulzana on one of those 10 Packs...

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/611UURj2y0L._SY445_.jpg)

It cost me $10, and the print was good. Most of the movies were crap... I did like The Eagle and the Hawk. And Jet Pilot as a kind of guilty pleasure. Ulanza's Raid was the jewel of the set.

And it's nice to see a Spaghetti Western (Silence) make the list, from someone other than 'you-know-who'


So anyone getting ideas for their watchlists? Anything on the list so far that you want to see?

I did check out Maverick. It was cute, a little overlong, but cute. it had a good cast. Jodie Foster was my fave. She's built her rep as a dramatic actress over the years, so it was nice to see her in something like this - being playful and silly. Though I disliked the ending
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

It wouldn't make my personal top 50, but it was a good nights entertainment. Glad I watched it.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 09, 2018, 04:15:46 PM
MY DARLING CLEMENTINE is always battling with my number 1 for the top position as favourite Western.

ULZANA’S RAID and THE GREAT SILENCE I haven't seen.

THE HATEFUL EIGHT - I have a love/hate relationship with Tarantino in general, and this movie is the same. I loved a lot of it, and could have done without the oral rape scene. It did not make my list.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: PsychoGoatee on October 09, 2018, 10:41:35 PM
My Darling Clementine is great. Random detail, I liked how Hateful Eight had an intermission when I saw it in the theater, during the limited release on film part. I don't think I'd had one since I saw Seven Samurai in a theater way back.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 09, 2018, 10:53:27 PM
I do enjoy a movie with an intermission.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 09, 2018, 11:21:27 PM
I remember when they restored Kubrick's Spartacus (added a found scene, cleaned it up). I drove to the big city to see it at this gorgeous, old style, single screen theater. With plush carpets, a balcony and all. Huge screen too. I think this was showing during a city wide film festival. And that movie had an intermission... where you go out into the lobby and have drinks (and I mean real drinks, like champagne served in glasses). Just a great, classy experience. I've never loved Spartacus more than I did that day.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 09, 2018, 11:24:58 PM
Well lets get back to it. Looks like a day full of Cole and Stethan...

#29 – SILVERADO
"We're gonna give you a fair trial, followed by a first class hanging." - Cobb


https://www.youtube.com/v/1Ux4lX5FP2Q
46 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #2 (Cole Stratton)

Director: Lawrence Kasadan

Stars: Kevin Costner, Brian Dennehy, Scott Glenn, Danny Glover, Kevin Kline, Rosanna Arquette, John Cleese, Jeff Goldblum, Linda Hunt, Jeff Fahey, Amanda Wyss, Earl Hindman

Subgenre: Traditional Western

Lawrence Kasdan’s winning homage benefited from a sterling ensemble cast (Scott Glenn, Kevin Costner, Kevin Cline, Danny Glover, Brian Dennehy, John Cleese, Jeff Goldblum, Rosanna Arquette), keen pacing—both in action and humor—and an all-in approach to the classic Western. The traditional motifs are all there as a quartet of cowboys treks to the film’s namesake town and helps its citizens fight back against corrupt powers that be. From fraught duels to wagon trains and cattle stampedes, Silverado is neither revisionist nor original, but it’s terrifically energetic and fun, not to mention beautifully polished in production. —Amanda Schurr, Paste

Trivia:
John Cleese's first line, "What's all this then?", is a Monty Python in-joke, as that line was often uttered by policemen upon entering the scene of a crime on Monty Python's Flying Circus (1969).
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 09, 2018, 11:26:01 PM
#28 – DEAD MAN
"That weapon will replace your tongue. You will learn to speak through it. And your poetry will now be written with blood.” - Nobody


https://www.youtube.com/v/VsUxQHq5BjA
47 points on 4 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #3 (Stethancantus)

Director: Jim Jarmusch

Stars: Johnny Depp, Gary Farmer, Crispin Glover, Robert Mitchum, John Hurt, Gabriel Byrne, Lance Henriksen, Iggy Pop, Billy Bob Thornton, Alfred Molina

Subgenre: Acid Western

Easily the bleakest film on a very bleak list, Jim Jarmusch’s intoxicating and dismally poetic exploration of physical and spiritual death sees Johnny Depp as the coincidently named traveller, William Blake. He’s a meek and mild bookkeeper whose journey into the abyss commences with a strangely confrontational tête-à-tête with a train fireman played by a blackface Crispin Glover.
It then proceeds to more unsettling as the minutes tick by. He arrives at the hellish industry settlement of Machine, only to be forced straight from it as a wanted man when he catches a bullet in his chest and steals the prize stallion from factory owner Robert Mitchum… and murders his son.

Though it quotes liberally (and jokingly) from the book of western lore, the structure of Jarmusch’s film is more like an epic poem – the tall tales of Chaucer infused with the macabre gothic of Poe – while its style comes over as a malevolent homage to Tarkovsky’s bucolic quest for spiritual enlightenment, ‘Andrei Rublev’, or to Bosch’s ‘The Garden of Earthly Delights’.

Blake is helped along his deathly trail (which takes in a who’s-who cast of American supporting character actors) by a Native American outcast called Nobody (Gary Farmer). A brilliant scene in which he’s scrambling through the brush calling ‘Nobody! Nobody! Nobody!’ encapsulates the film’s strange and surreal beauty. - David Jenkins, Time Out

Trivia:
The film contains conversations in the Cree and Blackfoot languages, which were intentionally not translated or subtitled, for the exclusive understanding of members of those nations, including several in-jokes aimed at Native American viewers.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 09, 2018, 11:27:01 PM
#27 – THE NAKED SPUR
"Now ain't that the way? A man gets set for trouble head-on and it sneaks up behind him every time!" - Ben Vandergroat


https://www.youtube.com/v/RaQKuHJgtN0
48 points on 4 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #8 (Cole Stratton)

Director: Anthony Mann

Stars: James Stewart, Janet Leigh, Robert Ryan, Ralph Meeker, Millard Mitchell

Subgenre: Psychological Western

You’d think an Anthony Mann film that casts James Stewart in one of the darkest roles of his career would be arresting simply for Stewart. In fairness to Jimmy, he’s absolutely fantastic here, unhinged, vengeful, and hell-bent on bringing Robert Ryan’s despicable outlaw to justice. But while Ryan isn’t Mann’s lead, he is the source of all the conflict in The Naked Spur, the crafty, devious engine who drives all of the film’s action through chicanery and deceit. He’s a lot of fun to watch, especially in comparison with Stewart, who broods as Ryan schemes. Theirs is a psychological slugfest that’s atypical of the Western’s brawnier pugilist impulses, but under Mann’s meticulous direction, seeing that battle of wits play out proves every bit as pleasurable as watching an explosive gunfight. - Andy Crump, Paste

Trivia:
When this film was released in Spain, its title was changed to "Colorado Jim" and the name of James Stewart's character was also changed from "Howard Kemp" to "Colorado Jim", for unknown reasons.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 09, 2018, 11:28:28 PM
#26 – YOUNG GUNS
”He ain't all there, is he?” (repeated line)


https://www.youtube.com/v/31uopmuQcJ8
49 points on 3 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #5 (Stethancantus, PsychoGoatee)

Director: Christopher Cain

Stars: Emilio Estevez, Kiefer Sutherland, Lou Diamond Phillips, Charlie Sheen, Dermot Mulroney, Casey Siemaszko, Terence Stamp, Jack Palance, Brian Keith

Subgenre: Outlaw Western

A group of young, hotheaded kids, including the infamous William H. Bonney (Emilio Estevez), are hired to help out British land-owner John Henry Tunstall (Terence Stamp). When their boss is killed, Bonney leads the group of gunslingers out to capture the murderers. Giving in to his rage, Bonney shoots the guilty men down instead of bringing them back to town, and he and his boys end up on the run from the law. - Rotten Tomatoes

Young Guns is best watched in the playful, none-too-serious spirit in which it was made. - Janet Maslin, New York Times

Trivia:
In the scene where the men are going through the Indian Village (Spirit World), Kiefer Sutherland's character "Doc" is shown in the front of the group with a cover on his face, but it is not Kiefer Sutherland. He left that morning before the scene was shot, due to the birth of his child.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 09, 2018, 11:51:04 PM
Every time I've tried to watch DEADMAN I've not made it through. I'm not really a Jim Jarmusch.

The only one above that I've seen (all the way through) is YOUNG GUNS. Maybe I need to revisit it, because I wasn't all that impressed.

Gosh, here we are at the halfway point and my list hasn't been too well represented so far. Hope to have a better showing in the top half.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: stethacantus on October 10, 2018, 01:30:26 PM
I saw Silverado in the theaters weeks before it's premiere. The studio that released it was so worried that no one would go to see a Western that they screened it as a double feature with Rambo: First Blood Part II and hoped for good word of mouth to drive ticket sales for it's actual run. To be honest, the reason I went to see it was not Rambo, but because John Cleese was in the cast an I was a big Monty Python fans.  The Hollywood Western had been declared dead, so I think this was made just to prove the critics wrong. My only problem with it is it seems like half the  characters were created just to give big name stars extended cameos. None of them are on screen that long, and their characters add nothing to the story. The final line came from Kevin Costner as he and Scott Glen are leaving. He turns around and yells to everyone "We'll be back!", Which suggested there was going to be a sequel. Never happened.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Johnny Unusual on October 10, 2018, 03:16:23 PM
Dead Man is a great movie, well worth checking out for someone looking for a very different sort of Western.  I really like the Hateful Eight for the most part, though much of the brutality towards Jennifer Jason Leigh's character gets a little too nasty for my taste (despite her doing a good job making the character really despicable).  I wasn't as big a fan of the reveal right before the penultimate chapter but it is nonetheless very good and well constructed.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 10, 2018, 05:01:03 PM
Dead Man is a trippy fever dream. I loved it. Ranked it high on my list

Silverado & Young Guns I haven't seen since the 80s. Would I still enjoy them?

The Naked Spur is an Anthony Mann, Jimmy Stewart Western... 'Nuff said!  :)



Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Russoguru on October 10, 2018, 05:24:32 PM
I've never seen Silverado. I've heard lots of good things about it but never got around to watching it.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 10, 2018, 11:36:46 PM
#25 – HIGH PLAINS DRIFTER
”It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid.” - The Stranger


https://www.youtube.com/v/Ek9CwmjisLE
50 points on 5 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #5 (Johnny Unusual)

Director: Clint Eastwood

Stars: Clint Eastwood, Verna Bloom, Billy Curtis, Marianna Hill, Mitchell Ryan, Jack Ging, Stefan Gierasch, Ted Hartley, Geoffrey Lewis

Subgenre: Gothic/Revisionist Western

A ghostly figure on horseback emerges from a distant, hazy heat mirage recessed in the depths of a desert plain. High-pitched banshee wails squeal like souls of the damned crying out from the land of the dead as the drifter rides into the seaside mining town of Lago. Bystanders gaze at the rider with fear, distrust or possibly a startled look of recognition. A stranger has arrived, and all the dark secrets of the town will soon meet the harsh light of day. Clint Eastwood’s second film at the helm as director, High Plains Drifter finds him coming to terms with his Spaghetti past in this direct homage to the films of Sergio Leone. In the town of Lago, there are no innocents. This message is brought home repeatedly with stark close-ups emphasizing features distorted with anger and rage, rendered grotesque with the almost unbearable weight of their sins. Even Eastwood’s drifter is no heroic icon, almost immediately losing the sympathies of the audience by committing a casual rape of an uppity townswoman who ultimately turns out to be just as complicit as everyone else. Despite its cynical depiction of humanity and its dark subject matter, this brooding, yet never gloomy Western gothic keeps its tight hold on you, depicting a town slowly unraveling, turning against itself as its dirty secrets are exposed by a possibly supernatural entity. - Joe Petitt Jr., Paste

Trivia:
Universal Pictures wanted the film to be shot on the studio lot. Instead, Clint Eastwood had a whole town built in the desert near Mono Lake in the California Sierras. Many of the buildings were complete and three-dimensional, so that interiors could be shot on location.

The town of Lago was built 300 miles away from Hollywood. A 46-man crew of technicians and 10 laborers worked 10-hours a day for 18 days constructing 14 houses and a two-story hotel. They were burned down at the film's completion.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 10, 2018, 11:37:46 PM
#24 – RIDE THE HIGH COUNTRY
”I want to know if you red-necked peckerwoods are too chicken-gutted to finish this thing in the open.” - Steve Judd


https://www.youtube.com/v/xRp3_JUZHiw
51 points on 3 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #4 (Charles Castle)

Director: Sam Peckinpah

Stars: Randolph Scott, Joel McCrea, Mariette Hartley, Ron Starr, Edgar Buchanan, R. G. Armstrong

Subgenre: Traditional Western

Few genres tackle ageing as convincingly as the western. A masculine genre fixated with self-sufficiency and isolation, the western often forced us to ask what comes at the end of a life lived by the gun – but when it does, the answers are rarely pleasant ones. Sam Peckinpah’s second film – and first masterpiece – is the simplest and most heartfelt of all the ‘geriatric westerns’.

It’s less obsessed with violence than ‘The Wild Bunch’, sweeter and less pessimistic than ‘Unforgiven’ and emotionally richer than either version of ‘True Grit’. Scott and McRea play old-time gunslingers, once feared lawmen now turned to pageantry and mercenary work, whose decision to re-team for one last lucrative job leads to in-fighting, betrayal and the final, irrevocable breaking of their partnership.

And just around the edges, we can feel the first tentative flourishes of what would come to be called ‘western revisionism’: the town of Coarsegold, populated by spit-hawking, ball-scratching Peckinpah regulars like LQ Jones and Warren Oates, is as convincing a vision of hell as anything in Bloody Sam’s later work, a hint that this world of high adventure on the high sierra wasn’t quite as rollicking as your average 12-year-old audience member might dream it was. - Tom Huddleston, Time Out

Trivia:
Randolph Scott retired from acting once he saw the finished film, saying he wanted to quit while he was ahead and that he would never be able to better his work here.
   
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 10, 2018, 11:39:36 PM
#23 – 3:10 TO YUMA (2007)
”You know, squeezin' that watch won't stop time.” - Ben Wade


https://www.youtube.com/v/jX1m45CwvJ8
52 points on 5 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #4 (CJones)

Director: James Mangold

Stars: Russell Crowe, Christian Bale, Logan Lerman, Ben Foster, Gretchen Mol, Vinessa Shaw, Dallas Roberts, Peter Fonda, Luke Wilson

Subgenre: Outlaw Western

3:10 to Yuma is a 2007 American Western film directed by James Mangold and produced by Cathy Konrad. It is about a drought-impoverished rancher (Bale) who takes on the dangerous job of taking a notorious outlaw (Crowe) to justice. It is a remake of the 1957 film of the same name, making it the second adaptation of Elmore Leonard's short story "Three-Ten to Yuma". Filming took place in various locations in New Mexico. 3:10 to Yuma opened September 7, 2007, in the United States and received positive reviews from critics.

Film review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a rating of 89%, based on 215 reviews, with an average rating of 7.5/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "The remake of this classic Western improves on the original, thanks to fiery performances from Russell Crowe and Christian Bale as well as sharp direction from James Mangold." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 76 out of 100, based on 37 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".

Trivia:
The short story upon which the film is based was published in Dime Western Magazine in 1953. The action begins in the hotel room with a Deputy Sheriff guarding a twenty-one-year-old robber.

My Reflections
I enjoyed both versions of the story, though it’s difficult to remember which one I preferred. LoC spoiler alert...
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 10, 2018, 11:43:53 PM
#22 – MCCABE AND MRS. MILLER
”All you've cost me so far is money and pain…” - John McCabe


https://www.youtube.com/v/m4WJATSdY4g
54 points on 3 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #5 (Travis)

Director: Robert Altman

Stars: Warren Beatty, Julie Christie, René Auberjonois, Michael Murphy, Shelly Duvall, Anthony Holland, William Devane

Subgenre: Anti-Western

Robert Altman turns his creative powers to the Western genre, and the results are remarkable. Not only is the movie one of the finest post-classical Westerns, it’s also one of the best American movies of the 1970s and arguably Altman’s greatest work. Warren Beatty plays a saloonkeeper in love with a newly arrived British prostitute (Julie Christie). The two open up a brothel for the locals, and as profits soar, outside investors arrive to buy out Beatty’s business. He declines their offer and subsequently has to contend with assassins sent to finalize the deal and take Beatty’s business and the town by force. Altman’s usual cast of character actors all hit the right notes, and Vilmos Zsigmond’s sepia-tinged cinematography brilliantly evokes pictures of the time, dusty and hazy as if the images have been preserved within an opium dream. Leonard Cohen’s songs heighten the melancholic proceedings, tantalizing us with their lyrical insights into the inner lives of these lost souls. - Derek Hill, Paste

Trivia:
During post-production on this film, Robert Altman was having a difficult time finding a proper musical score, until he attended a party where the album "Songs of Leonard Cohen" was playing and noticed that several tracks from the album seemed to fit in with the overall mood and themes of the movie. Cohen, who had been a fan of Altman's previous film, Brewster McCloud (1970), allowed him to use three songs from the album - "The Stranger Song", "Sisters of Mercy" and "Winter Lady" - although Altman was dismayed when Cohen later admitted that he didn't like the movie. A year later, Altman received a phone call from Cohen, who told him that he changed his mind after re-watching the movie with an audience and now loved it.

My Reflections
This one had to find it's audience... and I admit it bored me to tears when I saw this as a kid. When I got older, wiser and re-watched it, I loved it and thought, "Gee, what a little dumbass I used to be."  ;D
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 10, 2018, 11:45:38 PM
Man, I didn't care for the remake of 3:10. The original is far superior IMO.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 10, 2018, 11:52:16 PM
I've not seen either version of 3:10 in a while. While I did enjoy the remake, I believe I preferred the original.


Edit: and I just put the finishing touches on the last write-up I had to do. The most taxing part of hosting an LoC is done.  All I have to do from here on out is cut and paste.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: CJones on October 11, 2018, 11:55:36 AM
I didn't even know 3:10 to Yuma was a remake until putting together my list. Considering how high I had it, I guess I should check out the original.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Russoguru on October 11, 2018, 12:54:58 PM
I've seen Mccabe and Mrs Miller but it's been... half my lifetime ago. Way back in 1999 I was in a Film class at a community college and one of the movies we watched was Mccabe and Mrs Miller. I remember it being very sad...
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Johnny Unusual on October 11, 2018, 04:12:10 PM
I remember liking 3:10 to Yuma (the remake, I have yet to see the original) when I saw it, but very little of it stuck with me, so it didn't make my list (same with some other movie that might come up, I'm afraid)

High Plains Drifter is wonderful.  I understand if it rubs people the wrong way for the rape scene (which is particularly nasty, particularly since I think you are supposed to be at least partially on the side of the rapist in that scene.  Ew.) but everything else is great.  It's a weird and really moves in a crazy direction.  It at first looks like the Drifter is there is change the corrupt but in trouble town for it's own good with him giving candy to Native American children and making the  most picked on guy in town the new mayor.  Then it becomes apparent that the Drifter's plans might not be what anyone thought.  Clint Eastwood's directed a lot of great Westerns but this one really feels the most like the Leone movies in look but also attitude.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: PsychoGoatee on October 11, 2018, 10:12:33 PM
I've never seen High Plains Drifter, I should check it out. It's one of those ones where you kind of hear a bit about it and think I know how it ends. I'm sure it's cool though.

Anybody like Sabata? I ask because I randomly saw a box set of 3 Sabata movies in the CVS pharmacy today, looks like the first one is respectably regarded overall online.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 11, 2018, 10:38:15 PM
No, I've never seen Sabata… but I found the first one on youtube and am playing it now. (half way in and I'd call it good, bit not great)

I did kind of watch an old B-Western title Rawhide. I say kind of because I Fast-FWD through the singing cowboy stuff. I watched it because Baseball great, Lou Gerhig, starred in it and that made me curious. It's not a great movie, but he came off a likeable big lug of a guy, with a warm smile. 
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 11, 2018, 11:11:11 PM
#21 – TOMBSTONE
”Make no mistake, it's not revenge he's after. It's a reckonin'.” - Doc Holliday


https://www.youtube.com/v/XTWYKf5hXIg
55 points on 5 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #2 (CJones)

Director: George P. Cosmatos or Kurt Russell?

Stars: Kurt Russell, Val Kilmer, Bill Paxton, Sam Elliott, Michael Biehn, Powers Boothe, Stephen Lang, Charlton Heston, Dana Delany, Jason Priestley, Robert John Burke, Billy Zane, Jon Tenney, Thomas Haden Church

Subgenre: Outlaw Western

The gang’s all here, perfectly cast, in this revisionist telling of the events leading up to carnage at the O.K. Corral and its aftermath. Kurt Russell is outstanding as barely retired lawman Wyatt Earp, who moves to the film’s namesake mining town. There he reunites with his brothers (Sam Elliott, Bill Paxton) and Val Kilmer’s superbly iconic Doc Holliday, partnering to open a gambling saloon before a band of outlaws threatens the peace. Though George P. Cosmatos was credited as director after screenwriter-initial director Kevin Jarre was fired (Jarre’s work is seen in the scenes with Heston), Russell has since said he himself handled the bulk of the duties. Whoever had the ultimate word, the result is a thrillingly old-fashioned Western tweaked for modern audiences. The extensive A-list ensemble includes Robert Mitchum as the film’s narrator, Harry Carey Jr. as Marshal Fred White and Charlton Heston as ranching tycoon Henry Hooker. - Amanda Schurr, Paste

Trivia:
The story behind the production of “Tombstone” is a twisted, convoluted tale on it’s own. And started with screenwriter Kevin Jarre and actors Kurt Russell and Kevin Costner developing a movie about Wyatt Earp. Costner wanted the emphasis on Wyatt Earp, the other two disagreed. Costner left the project and hired director Lawrence Kasadan to do his version of the tale. (The rivalry between the 2 productions heated up when Kevin worked to see that the competing film would not get a major distribution deal.)

Meanwhile, on the Tombstone project, a tug of war between Russell and Jarre (who was slated to direct) began over details of the script. Jarre lost that fight and was fired and Cosmatos was brought in, though it’s rumored that he only followed Russell’s day by day shot lists. It’s said that Kurt also edited his own scenes and gave the other actors expanded screen time.

Despite the turmoil and all those cooks in the kitchen, Tombstone was triumphant. It beat Costner’s film to the theater by a year, and earned better critical notices and box-office dollars.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 11, 2018, 11:12:55 PM
#20 – THE OUTLAW JOSEY WALES
”Get ready, little lady. Hell is coming to breakfast.” - Lone Watie


https://www.youtube.com/v/dCPcoNo_OkM
56 points on 5 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #10 (Travis)

Director: Clint Eastwood

Stars: Clint Eastwood, Chief Dan George, Sondra Locke, Bill McKinney, John Vernon, Paula Trueman, Sam Bottoms, Sheb Wooley, Royal Dano, Will Sampson

Subgenre: Outlaw/Revisionist Western

A strong prelude to the elegiac mastery of Unforgiven, this biting, intelligent, intense Western from Clint Eastwood, both as actor and, after he fell out with and fired writer-director Philip Kaufman, director, pitches the virtuous man against the corrupt government as if the Man With No Name possessed a soul. The journey of Josey Wales is from the disillusioned loner, striking out for empty territory, who becomes the father figure again, picking up a band of misfits along the way. - Ian Nathan, Empire

Trivia:
This movie received a lot of high praise among Native American viewers for its non-stereotypical portrayal of Native Americans in the film.

John Landis cast John Vernon in Animal House (1978) after seeing him in this movie.

My Reflections:
Yeah Clint is cool, but Chief Dan George steals every scene he’s in, and gets some of the best lines. This is one of my mothers favorite films, and George is a big reason why.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 11, 2018, 11:14:26 PM
#19 – JOHNNY GUITAR
”A man can lie, steal... and even kill. But as long as he hangs on to his pride, he's still a man. All a woman has to do is slip - once. And she's a "tramp!" Must be a great comfort to you to be a man.” - Vienna


https://www.youtube.com/v/ACgSyxdV9vE
59 points on 3 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #4 (Edward J. Grugg III)

Director: Nicholas Ray

Stars: Joan Crawford, Sterling Hayden, Mercedes McCambridge, Ward Bond, Ernest Borgnine, John Carradine

Subgenre: Film Noir Western

When you think of Western movies, you probably picture the grandeur of the American frontier: big, open expanses of land capped off with an endless blue sky, a rugged panorama rife with as much danger as opportunity. You probably don’t think of intimacy of setting. In that respect, Johnny Guitar is an anomaly of sorts in a genre that is routinely vast in its physical scope and scale: The film takes place almost exclusively in a saloon that stands just two stories high. You can chalk all of this up either to invention or, more realistically, to budgeting snafus, but Johnny Guitar’s small stature doesn’t hold it back from being a solid Western. Ever notice the homoerotic tensions that crackle between the good guys and the bad guys in Western films? Johnny Guitar plays with that by channeling the energy back and forth from Joan Crawford to Mercedes McCambridge—their characters loathe each other, but not as much as Crawford loathed McCambridge and vice versa. That little reversal is enough to make the film feel special despite being so scant. - Andy Crump, Paste

Trivia:
Crawford was a real, nasty diva on set. Flying into jealous rages against McCambridge, stressing out Ray… Sterling Hayden said: "There is not enough money in Hollywood to lure me into making another picture with Joan Crawford. And I like money."
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 11, 2018, 11:18:20 PM
#18 –DJANGO UNCHAINED
“Our mutual friend has a flair for the dramatic.” - Dr. King Schultz


https://www.youtube.com/v/ztD3mRMdqSw
59 points on 4 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #3 (PsychoGoatee)

Director: Quentin Tarantino

Stars: Jamie Foxx, Leonardo DiCaprio, Christoph Waltz, Kerry Washington, Samuel L. Jackson, Don Johnson, Walton Goggins, James Remar

Subgenre: Spaghetti-style Western set in the Southern frontier

Vocal fanboy Quentin Tarantino paid blatant homage to Sergio Corbucci’s 1966 masterpiece in this solid revisionist saga. Christoph Waltz is marvelous as Dr. Schultz, an erudite, gentlemanly but deadly bounty hunter who enlists the film’s enslaved namesake (a never better Jamie Foxx) to help him track down a trio of outlaws. As usual, Tarantino’s casting is canny, from Don Johnson’s Colonel Sanders-esque plantation boss Big Daddy to Leonardo DiCaprio as the repellent owner of Django’s wife to Samuel L. Jackson as DiCaprio’s equally racist house servant—who has to be heard to be believed, if not at all understood. The relationship between the newly liberated Django and his now colleague Schultz is a pleasure to watch; the horrifying “Mandingo fight,” not so much. Django Unchained is sickening satire, bloody, uneasily hilarious and entertaining in that Tarantino fashion that squarely divides audiences. - Amanda Schurr, Paste

Trivia:
Dr. King Schultz says he wants to re-name Eskimo Joe, the Mandingo fighter he tries to purchase, "Black Hercules". This was the real-life nickname of Ken Norton, the actor and boxer who starred in Mandingo (1975).

Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 12, 2018, 01:53:19 AM
I've seen all of these except Tombstone.

JOHNNY GUITAR is the only one to make the list though. I've watched it several times in the last couple of years and my appreciation for it only grows. Joan Crawford is truly amazing in it.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: PsychoGoatee on October 12, 2018, 03:57:42 AM
Django Unchained is cool... and entertaining...! - PsychoGoatee (box cover quote)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: CJones on October 12, 2018, 03:21:56 PM
I honestly thought Tombstone would rank higher.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Russoguru on October 12, 2018, 04:00:01 PM
I may have said this before and I'm sorry Psycho Goatee but... I can't stand Django Unchained. There were some things about it that left me feeling very annoyed. I don't care how silly or cheesy it is, Tombstone is much better. Yeah, yeah, I know... blasphemy!
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: PsychoGoatee on October 12, 2018, 04:00:51 PM
Thats okay!
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 12, 2018, 06:39:05 PM
For me, Christoph Waltz makes Django great. When he's gone, and Tarantino goes off the rails with the ending, in that self indulgent way of his. It kind of loses me. But when Waltz was around it was golden.

Tombstone? Personally I think the 21st slot is too generous. I mean it's a goodie, but there are better films listed behind it. (Hell, there's a masterpiece directly behind it)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: CJones on October 12, 2018, 07:21:16 PM
For me, Christoph Waltz makes Django great. When he's gone, and Tarantino goes off the rails with the ending, in that self indulgent way of his. It kind of loses me. But when Waltz was around it was golden.

I had Django Unchained on my list, but I can agree with you there. It kinda looses me towards the end.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 12, 2018, 11:14:24 PM
#17 – RED RIVER
”I don't like quitters, especially when they're not good enough to finish what they start.” - Thomas Dunson


https://www.youtube.com/v/V0CJmLoshqM
61 points on 4 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #6 (Travis)

Director: Howard Hawks

Stars: John Wayne, Montgomery Clift, Walter Brennan, Harry Carey, John Ireland

Subgenre: Cattle Drive Western

Howard Hawks’ first Western pitted seasoned rancher John Wayne against his adopted son Montgomery Clift in what screenwriter Borden Chase described as Mutiny on the Bounty with saddles and stirrups. Wayne’s Tom Dunson is a tortured, stubborn antihero, whose early decision to leave his ladylove results in her death, and a lifetime of regret. He takes a young boy, the sole survivor of the Indian attack that claimed his sweetheart, under his wing and, accompanied by his wagon master, continues on, spending almost 15 years growing a cattle empire in South Texas. Following the Civil War, Dunson figures its time for a thousand-mile drive north—with some 10,000 cattle on what would be known as the Chisholm Trail—but the taskmaster’s grown son (Clift) comes to challenge his authority, to mounting peril.

A divisive climax notwithstanding (Chase and Clift hated it), Red River is the quintessential Western, marked by a colonial “tough shit” approach to how Dunson takes his territory and a Shakespearean scope. It’s a grand journey rooted in the most deep-seated of human drama. In his first screen role, Clift exudes an intense, neurotic charisma that pushed Wayne to newfound complexity on screen—the tension between generations, values, notions of masculinity and acting methods is palpable, to the film’s benefit. Cinematographer Russell Harlan expertly stages such majestic set pieces as the epic stampede, and Dimitri Tiomkin’s classic score swells. Expansive, enduring filmmaking. - Amanda Schurr, Paste

Trivia:
Blink and you'll miss a couple of future stars in bit parts. Shelley Winters can be glimpsed as a dance hall girl in the second wagon train. Richard Farnsworth plays one of Dunson's men. He was also a stuntman on the picture. Harder to recognize is Glenn Strange, who appeared in 16 of John Wayne's earlier films; this was their last picture together.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 12, 2018, 11:15:35 PM
#16 – THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN
"We deal in lead, friend." - Vin


https://www.youtube.com/v/bG-ZxrG7htU
68 points on 4 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #1 (CJones)

Director: John Sturges

Stars: Yul Brynner, Eli Wallach, Steve McQueen, Charles Bronson, Robert Vaughn, Brad Dexter, James Coburn, Horst Buchholz, Robert J. Wilke

Subgenre: Revisionist Western remake of The Seven Samurai

Even if you know nothing about The Magnificent Seven, I’d bet money you can hum its theme song. Outside of the title track to The Good, The Bad and the Ugly, the theme from The Magnificent Seven is one of the most recognizable theme songs from a Western, if not from movie music period. It’s fitting that such an enjoyable and seminal film would have a great soundtrack. From its origins as a straight-up remake of Akira Kurosawa’s epic, The Seven Samurai, The Magnificent Seven evolved into something else, a fitting homage to its source material, but also a classic in its own right. The basic story is fairly simple: A group of handpicked gunfighters is hired to protect a small town from a gang of marauders led by the flamboyant and dangerous Calvera (Eli Wallach, in his first Western role). Making it clear they are only in it for the paltry cash, the mercenaries, led by Chris Adams (Yul Brynner), slowly grow to admire the peasants of the small Mexican village, and ultimately find a greater moral purpose in defending the town from the bandits. The highly stylish film was a major boost for the careers of several cast members, including Wallach, Steve McQueen, Charles Bronson and James Coburn. Its swaggering action sequences, majestic choreography and use of the more cynical plot point of “hired guns defend a town” over the more traditionally acceptable “one man stands alone to uphold justice” set the basic template for the Western for the rest of the ’60s onward. - Joe Petitt Jr, Paste

Trivia:
Composer John Williams was a member of the orchestra that recorded Elmer Bernstein's score; he played the piano.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 12, 2018, 11:17:10 PM
#15 – THE WILD BUNCH
”What I like and what I need are two different things.” - Deke Thornton


https://www.youtube.com/v/jwE3TfJUB48
69 points on 4 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #3 (Travis)

Director: Sam Peckinpah

Stars: William Holden, Ernest Borgnine, Robert Ryan, Edmond O'Brien, Warren Oates, Jaime Sánchez, Ben Johnson, Emilio Fernández, Strother Martin

Subgenre: Revisionist Western Set in Mexico

It’s hard to believe that just seven years had passed between ‘Ride the High Country’, Peckinpah’s daring, heartfelt but still resolutely old-school western masterpiece, and the game-changing hot blast of new-wave revisionism that was ‘The Wild Bunch’.

In between, he’d faffed about with Charlton Heston in the disappointing ‘Major Dundee’, done a fair amount of screenwriting and TV work, drank a bit and broodingly plotted his next big move. It’s safe to say no one was expecting this. Theses have been written about the meaning of ‘The Wild Bunch’, its relations to Vietnam and the cultural revolution, the death of censorship and the awakening of social conscience. But, with all of this firmly in the past, what remains is a portrait of desperation, of men so locked into one way of living that the only way out is to die. Peckinpah was undoubtedly a consummate self-mythologiser, and he loved to propagate an image of himself which tallied with the hard-living, hard-drinking characters he wrote about. But it’s hard not to see ‘The Wild Bunch’ as evidence of a man willingly, enthusiastically, foolishly sowing the seeds of his own self-destruction. - Tom Huddleston, Time Out

Trivia:
Robert Ryan's incessant complaints about not receiving top billing so annoyed director Sam Peckinpah that he decided to "punish" Ryan. In the opening credits, after freezing the screen on closeups of William Holden's and Ernest Borgnine's faces while listing them, Peckinpah froze the scene on several horses' rear ends as Ryan was listed.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 12, 2018, 11:19:56 PM
#14 – TRUE GRIT (2010)
”They tell me your a man of true grit.” - Mattie Ross to Rooster Cogburn


https://www.youtube.com/v/aOHGKCle-aY
72 points on 5 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #6 (Johnny Unusual, CJones)

Director: Joel and Ethan Coen

Stars: Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, Josh Brolin, Hailee Steinfeld, Barry Pepper, Domhnall Gleeson, J. K. Simmons

Subgenre: Traditional Western

Girded by strong performances from Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, and newcomer Hailee Steinfeld, and lifted by some of the Coens' most finely tuned, unaffected work, True Grit is a worthy companion to the Charles Portis book. - Rotten Tomatoes Critics Consensus

True Grit is a 2010 American Revisionist Western film directed, written, produced, and edited by the Coen brothers and executive produced by Steven Spielberg. It is the second adaptation of Charles Portis' 1968 novel of the same name. In it, feisty 14 year-old farm girl Mattie Ross (Steinfeld) hires Cogburn, a boozy, trigger-happy lawman (Bridges) after an outlaw named Tom Chaney (Brolin) murders her father. The bickering duo are accompanied on their quest by a Texas Ranger named LaBoeuf (Damon) who has been tracking Chaney for killing a State Senator. As they embark on a dangerous adventure, each character has his or her "grit" tested in different ways. - Wiki

Trivia:
The movie was nominated for ten Academy Awards failing to win any and going down in film history as one of the most ever nominated films to not win an Oscar.

In the original True Grit (1969), Rooster Cogburn wears his eye-patch on his left eye. In the remake of True Grit (2010), the eye-patch is worn over Cogburn's right eye.

My Reflections:
I was at first a little pissed when talk of a remake surfaced. And I wasn’t sure I wanted to see it, as I feared I’d have my memories trampled on. But I did go, and loved it. Aside from a man dressed as a bear, the Coen’s actually played this straight, less quirky than I expected, which I appreciated. And Steinfeld was a revelation. Just perfect, the right age, the right attitude.

It’s actually kind of a reversed photo negative of the first flick in many ways. (scars and eye patches seen on opposite sides for one). It’s truer to the novel, though that’s not always a good thing. I actually prefer not knowing what became of Mattie. I liked leaving that to my imagination.

Oh, and I disagree with Wiki, while grittier, this isn’t a revisionist western. The appeal of True Grit for me, was that it was one of the last of the old fashioned traditional westerns, in a sea of revisionist, psychological, or European fare. T.G. in ‘69 or 2010 was a refreshing trip back to the genre’s roots.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 12, 2018, 11:25:20 PM
So has an original and remake ever made the same movie LoC before? I know in the Horror Film list, we split on both versions of Nosferatu (with neither making it)

And has anyone ever voted for both versions of a film on any LoC? I thought of putting both Grits on mine, but decided to pick one (the original) since there were so many, too many other fine Westerns movies to chose from. 3 of us went with '69, 5 with 2010.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: PsychoGoatee on October 12, 2018, 11:26:56 PM
I highly enjoyed both versions of True Grit, and I really like The Wild Bunch. Also Ernest Borgnine is great, and is in everything. Ernest Borgnine is mentioned in a great joke on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Xander says it, I can't find the quote online but he says he's a tender lover or something like that. It was an MST3K-esque deep pull that I appreciated.

On voting for several versions of a movie, I don't think I have.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Johnny Unusual on October 13, 2018, 04:45:51 AM
I never saw the original True Grit but the remake was great stuff.  I like that after all that build up, the villain isn't a fiend, he's just pathetic, (thoug also completely awful).

I remember liking the Outlaw Josey Wales but it didn't stick strongly in my memory like some of the other films in my list.  It might rise higher up on rewatch, though.

Still need to watch the Wild Bunch.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: CJones on October 13, 2018, 01:57:06 PM
I've seen both versions of True Grit, but I much prefer the remake.  Almost entirely because of Hailee Steinfeld. Mattie Ross is the real main character of the story, and Steinfeld gives a much more compelling performance than Kim Darby. Plus, you know, she's the right age. This is something that always bugged me about the John Wayne version.

I can't remember any previous instance of two versions of the same thing making the same LoC before. But I've only been involved since LoC 52: Beverages. True Grit 1969 is probably the only western I've seen that I didn't put on my list somewhere, not because I didn't like it. I just didn't want to use both if I could help it.   
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 13, 2018, 04:20:17 PM
RED RIVER was 12 on my list. A tremendous film.

THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN was a bit of a let down for me. I loved the other (surely upcoming?) adaptation of a Kurosawa film into a western, but this one didn't clear the bar for me.

Don't think I've ever seen THE WILD BUNCH.

Loved the remake of TRUE GRIT. I do prefer it to the original, which didn't quite make my list.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 13, 2018, 10:29:38 PM
#13 – THE MAN WHO SHOT LIBERTY VALANCE
”This is the West, sir. When the legend becomes fact, print the legend.” - Maxwell Scott


https://www.youtube.com/v/bN0onE09-8c
75 points on 5 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #7 (Cole Stratton, Travis, Linzoid)

Director: John Ford

Stars: John Wayne, James Stewart, Lee Marvin, Vera Miles, Edmond O'Brien, Andy Devine

Subgenre: Traditional Western

Five years after the entrancing bitterness of ‘The Searchers’, John Ford reached a kind of accommodation with his favourite mythologies in this bundle of contradictions. This western, that opens just a few years before World War I, is a tragedy shot through with mischief and boisterous humour. And it’s a film that comes to bury the Old West but can’t help but praise it.

The end of the frontier life is heralded by the collision of James Stewart’s principled eastern lawyer, Stoddard, with rancher Tom Doniphon, played with rough charm by John Wayne. Stoddard’s civilisation competes with Doniphon’s western gun law as they both try to free the town of Shinbone from the grip of outlaw Liberty Valance and vie for the love of the same woman.

It’s a contrast that’s played out from the start, when Stoddard, now an ageing and respected senator, arrives back in Shinbone for Doniphon’s funeral only to find the great symbol of the west – it’s John Wayne in that pine box after all – is bound for a pauper’s grave. As Stoddard relates his story in flashback to the editor of the Shinbone Star, the layers of western legend are peeled away, exposing not lies but a collective will to mythologise and an amnesia necessary for progress.

Ford’s vision is remarkably unsentimental. He pays tribute to the Doniphons who built America while accepting that that their usefulness died with the frontier. Strangely, for all the director’s identification with The Duke, it’s Stewart who delivers what is surely a deliberate reference to the journey Ford has taken. ‘When I first came to Shinbone,’ he begins, ‘I came by stagecoach…’

More than 20 years after Ford’s own arrival with ‘Stagecoach’, he had reinvented the western again and in ‘Liberty Valance’ bequeathed a sad, warm-hearted reproach to modernity’s forgetfulness. - Paul Fairclough, Time Out

Trivia:
O.Z. Whitehead, playing a teenager, was actually 50 years old.

Valance addresses several characters as "dude." From the 1870s to 1960s, this was a pejorative term with the approximate meaning of "overdressed city slicker," usually applied to city dwellers visiting rural areas. In the 1960s, surfer culture adapted the term to mean "friend" or "companion."
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 13, 2018, 10:35:29 PM
#12 – RIO BRAVO
"You want that gun, pick it up. I wish you would." - John T. Chance


https://www.youtube.com/v/WPO12ZzGS84
79 points on 5 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #1 (Travis)

Director: Howard Hawks

Stars: John Wayne, Dean Martin, Ricky Nelson, Angie Dickinson, Walter Brennan

Subgenre: Traditional Western

One of the truly great Westerns. John Wayne’s casual, seemingly effortless performance is also one of his finest, in a long career of sturdy, iconic roles. Director Howard Hawks and screenwriters Leigh Brackett and Jules Furthman designed the movie as a conscious refutation to Fred Zinnemann’s earnest, socially aware criticism of the genre (and of conservative America) in High Noon. In that movie, a marshal (played by Gary Cooper) pleads for help from the good citizens of his town to no avail, as some gunslingers come to shoot him down. Hawks and Wayne strategically play out a similar situation much differently. Wayne’s sheriff doesn’t have to ask for help when a gang of outlaws descends on the town to violently free Claude Akins from his small jail cell. A group of misfits—down-and-out alcoholic Dean Martin, pretty boy Ricky Nelson, prostitute Angie Dickinson and old codger Walter Brennan—gladly stand by Duke when he needs them the most. When the bullets fly, Wayne and his friends stand tall and steely-eyed against their foes. From its masterful opening scene—a beautifully edited, wordless sequence involving sad-sack Martin, the villainous Akins and a contemptuous yet lovingly paternalistic Duke—to its climactic action-filled showdown, Rio Bravo hits all the right notes with easy-going charm and grit. There’s even a bizarre but lovable music number. But don’t be put off by Rio Bravo’s casual, old-fashioned charm. At its core, the movie resonates profoundly as a story of true camaraderie, moral duty and what it takes to stand up to wrongdoing when the odds are against you. Rio Bravo’s emotional power echoes with each subsequent viewing. - Derek Hill, Paste

Trivia:
John Carpenter named this as an inspiration for Assault on Precinct 13 (1976).

The sets in Old Tucson are built to 7/8th scale, so the performers look larger than life.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 13, 2018, 10:36:47 PM
#11 – HIGH NOON
”You're a good-looking boy: you've big, broad shoulders. But he's a man. And it takes more than big, broad shoulders to make a man.” - Helen


https://www.youtube.com/v/g9CR_tib0CA
80 points on 5 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #3 (Charles Castle)

Director: Fred Zinnemann

Stars: Gary Cooper, Grace Kelly, Lloyd Bridges, Katy Jurado, Lon Chaney Jr, Lee Van Cleef

Subgenre: Revisionist Western

One of the handful of films often touted as an archetypal Western, High Noon was actually quite atypical and possibly ahead of its time on its initial release. Director Fred Zinnemann was an unlikely candidate, a German Jew whose main exposure to the genre was through the fantasy Western novels of German writer Karl May. It was possibly the sole Western of its time to have a successful Hispanic businesswoman as one of its prominent characters. The film is often interpreted as an allegory of Hollywood blacklisting during the McCarthy era. Screenwriter Carl Foreman was accused of being a Communist sympathizer, and remained bitter about that fact for the rest of his life. None of these interesting facts would matter if High Noon weren’t a damn fine, gripping Western. Suspense builds with most of the narrative flow progressing in real time. Abandoned by his newlywed Quaker bride (Grace Kelly) and rebuffed by the townspeople, Sheriff Will Kane (Gary Cooper) grows increasingly desperate in his search to find an ally to face off against returning criminal Frank Miller. Due to arrive on the noon train, his old enemy has plans to assemble his gang in order to exact revenge on Kane for putting him away. Tight close-ups of faces, deserted city streets, empty windows, buildings and ticking clocks emphasize Kane’s locked fate and dwindling options, a technique borrowed and expanded on to exaggerated lengths by Sergio Leone. John Wayne thought the film’s themes highly un-American, and later joined forces with director Howard Hawks to film Rio Bravo as a sort of conservative riposte. The Duke was wrong. In retrospect, High Noon is a quintessential American story, expertly exploring the theme of one man, abandoned by those he considered friends, who stubbornly sets out to defy the odds by standing up for what he believes is right.  - Joe Petitt Jr., Paste

Trivia:
Producer Stanley Kramer first offered the leading role of Will Kane to Gregory Peck, who turned it down because he felt it was too similar to The Gunfighter (1950). Other actors who turned down the role included Charlton Heston, Marlon Brando, Kirk Douglas, Montgomery Clift, and Burt Lancaster.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 13, 2018, 10:47:44 PM
#10 – BLAZING SADDLES
"Mongo only pawn... in game of life." - Mongo


https://www.youtube.com/v/VKayG1TrfuE
92 points on 7 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #1 (Linzoid)

Director: Mel Brooks

Stars: Cleavon Little, Gene Wilder, Harvey Korman, Madeline Kahn, Slim Pickens, Dom DeLuise, John Hillerman, Alex Karras

Subgenre: Comedy Western

Western purists might wrinkle their noses at this particular inclusion. Mel Brooks’ film, after all, isn’t a “real” Western, but rather a pastiche of Western tropes stitched together using his uniquely zany cinematic grammar. Above all else, Blazing Saddles skewers the many staple characteristics of the Western while mocking Hollywood’s racist mythologizing of the American West. But in many ways that just makes Blazing Saddles the ultimate Western film: It is so stocked with all of the “stuff” we expect from Westerns, plus a side of Brooks’ own madcap vision and human satire, that it ends up being a great comic Western and more. The film is so effective at being both a parody and an earnest story about a corrupt politician’s thwarted attempts at land-snatching from the good (if ignorant) people of Rock Ridge that we almost forget we’re watching pure, unabashed nonsense of a cleverly progressive bent. - Andy Crump, Paste

Trivia:
When Mongo rides into town, one Mexican says, "Mongo! Santa Maria!" Mongo Santamaria was a famous Cuban musician.


Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 13, 2018, 11:49:15 PM
RIO BRAVO is great, but didn't quite make my list - It was one that I wished I had time to revisit before putting my list together though.

HIGH NOON and THE MAN WHO SHOT LIBERTY VALANCE both made my list (9 and 13, respectively).

I grew out of Mel Brooks a long time ago, as I mentioned in the comedy LoC.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Johnny Unusual on October 14, 2018, 06:42:18 AM
Wasn't a big fan of Rio Bravo but High Noon was great. It's a really powerful film and one of the tensest Westerns out there.  Though there's no twist or magical realism, it does sort of feel like a Twilight Zone episode (one of the better ones) in the way it builds tension and discusses human nature and the difference between standing with someone when it is easy to do and when it is hard.  Need to watch it again some time soon.

Still haven't seen the Man Who Shot Liberty Valance.  But my sister did have the song (which I'm given to understand doesn't appear in the movie) on a CD of 60's hits when we were young.

https://www.youtube.com/v/vDN4L7cAQf0
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Russoguru on October 14, 2018, 09:25:01 AM
I myself voted for Blazing Saddles, but there were quite a few things in that movie that stopped me from placing it anywhere near the number 1 slot.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: CJones on October 14, 2018, 09:27:43 AM
I'm predicting a lot of Sergio Leone in the top 10.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Russoguru on October 14, 2018, 09:43:22 AM
Top 10? I'm predicting a Sergio Leone movie will be number 1.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: PsychoGoatee on October 14, 2018, 02:12:40 PM
Sergio is a cool dude for sure, and he may have been an overdressed city slicker quite possibly

(Lot of movies I've gotta check out, haven't seen a lot of the classics on this page here)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: CJones on October 14, 2018, 03:57:27 PM
Top 10? I'm predicting a Sergio Leone movie will be number 1.

Yeah, I fully expect #1 to be The Good, The Bad and the Ugly. But I guess we'll see.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 14, 2018, 04:17:11 PM
Top 10? I'm predicting a Sergio Leone movie will be number 1.

Yeah, I fully expect #1 to be The Good, The Bad and the Ugly. But I guess we'll see.

Probably, though there is a John Ford movie that is a very strong contender.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: MartyS (Gromit) on October 14, 2018, 04:54:21 PM
I can think of a couple I've watched that were not made by Sergio that could easily be #1, and there are quite a few classic westerns I have not seen.

Since it has been mentioned, has there been a better release of The G, B, &U since the first blu-ray?  I was so disappointed with the sound in that release.  It looked great but it was like the person that did the surround mix was 12 and thought it was cool to have random sounds and voices coming from the corners of the room.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 14, 2018, 05:07:29 PM
I can think of a couple I've watched that were not made by Sergio that could easily be #1, and there are quite a few classic westerns I have not seen.

Since it has been mentioned, has there been a better release of The G, B, &U since the first blu-ray?  I was so disappointed with the sound in that release.  It looked great but it was like the person that did the surround mix was 12 and thought it was cool to have random sounds and voices coming from the corners of the room.

KINO released a new one last year. https://www.amazon.com/Good-Ugly-Anniversary-Special-Blu-ray/dp/B0716XZB2B

I have not watched it, so you'll have to look up reviews, but I know it was from a new scan.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: linszoid on October 14, 2018, 05:44:13 PM
Top 10? I'm predicting a Sergio Leone movie will be number 1.

Yeah, I fully expect #1 to be The Good, The Bad and the Ugly. But I guess we'll see.

I'm hoping for Last of the Wild Horses or Gunslinger.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Russoguru on October 14, 2018, 06:17:21 PM
Top 10? I'm predicting a Sergio Leone movie will be number 1.

Yeah, I fully expect #1 to be The Good, The Bad and the Ugly. But I guess we'll see.

I'm hoping for Last of the Wild Horses or Gunslinger.
OMG Linszoid, please don't EVER change.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 14, 2018, 09:25:34 PM
#9 – BUTCH CASSIDY & THE SUNDANCE KID
”Bitch, bitch, bitch!” - Sundance


https://www.youtube.com/v/YdJW2UxvSFQ
93 points on 7 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #7 (Stethancantus, CJones - Russoguru had it #2 on a partial)

Director: George Roy Hill

Stars: Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Katherine Ross, Strother Martin, Henry Jones, Jeff Corey, George Furth, Cloris Leachman, Ted Cassidy, Kenneth Mars

Subgenre: Outlaw/Revisionist Western

The top-grossing film of 1969 and four-time Oscar winner was an anachronistic wonder that poked at the stoic bravura of the traditional Western: Consider the broad buddy humor between its pitch-perfect leads, Paul Newman and Robert Redford; the poppy, Burt Bacharach-Hal David-penned score and that theme song, “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on My Head”; and William Goldman’s wry, self-aware script. From the first sepia-saturated moments of George Roy Hill’s take on the Old West, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid rewrote history, literally: Author Goldman famously wanted to tell the story of the titular outlaws’ flight to South America but didn’t want to do sufficient research for a novel-length treatment. And thus, “Most of what follows is true,” the film winks at its start. Gorgeously shot by Conrad Hall, the film is a deftly balanced mix of reverential genre elegy and sometimes deadpan, sometimes slapstick comedy. At its heart is then box office superstar Newman and comparatively small-potatoes actor Redford, the latter taking over after Steve McQueen backed out, balking over whose name would be billed first in the credits. As the Kid’s girlfriend, Katharine Ross complicates the duo’s relationship and lends nuance to what is essentially a love story. Curiously, Butch and Sundance’s posse, the Hole in the Wall Gang, was known as the Wild Bunch in real life but was changed for the screen to avoid confusion with another Western set for release a few months prior to its own premiere. - Amanda Schurr, Paste

Trivia:
The real Butch Cassidy (whose name was actually Robert Leroy Parker) got his nickname because he once worked in a butcher's shop. The Sundance Kid, real name Harry Alonzo Longabaugh, got his nickname because he once was arrested in the Wyoming town of Sundance.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 14, 2018, 09:26:50 PM
#8 – FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE
”When the chimes end, pick up your gun. Try and shoot me, Colonel. Just try.” - El Indio


https://www.youtube.com/v/XsS3GLw2-DA
93 points on 7 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #7 (MartyS [Gromit], Johnny Unusual)

Director: Sergio Leone

Stars: Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, Gian Maria Volontè, Klaus Kinski, Mario Brega

Subgenre: Spaghetti Western

The second of Sergio Leone’s Dollars trilogy and the most underrated. It’s also the movie where the director started indulging in eccentric cinematic flourishes—intricate flashback sequences, stretched-out long takes, dabs of absurdist humor coloring scenes of violence—that would peak with his two outright masterpieces, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly and Once Upon a Time in the West. Clint Eastwood and Lee Van Cleef play bounty hunters in search of a psychotic, dope-smoking bandit, played by the fantastic Gian Maria Volontè, and his gang of cutthroats. Far more complex than its predecessor, For a Few Dollars More gives Van Cleef and Volontè complicated interior lives. Watching Van Cleef and Eastwood try to outwit each other, particularly in the hat-shooting sequence, and their general cynical attitudes toward the lawless world they exist in makes for solid viewing. Other highlights: Ennio Morricone’s robust score utilizes more discordant textures; Klaus Kinski plays a hunchback(!); and Van Cleef uses an array of bizarre weaponry that would go on to influence other Italian Westerns, particularly the Sabata movies, also starring Van Cleef. - Derek Hill, Paste

Trivia:
Lee Van Cleef was very grateful for his part in the film as he had fallen on hard times due to his heavy drinking. The film effectively marked a resurgence in his career. Van Cleef had taken up painting in the interim as a way of making money.

LoC Ranking Note:
This was a tough tie to break. They had the same points, were on the same number of lists, both shared the same 7th slot (on 2 lists) as high vote. So I went to second highest ranking and this one bested B&S with an 8th place vote, to Butch’s 11th place ranking.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 14, 2018, 09:30:41 PM
#7 – STAGECOACH
"All in all, it's been exciting, a very interesting trip. Has it not?" - Samuel Peacock


https://www.youtube.com/v/OE-VWDsdkwM
95 points on 6 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #3 (Edward J. Grugg II)

Director: John Ford

Stars: Claire Trevor, John Wayne, Andy Devine, John Carradine, Thomas Mitchell, Louise Platt, George Bancroft, Donald Meek, Berton Churchill

Subgenre: Traditional Western

And just like that, with one swift zoom shot, John Ford gave John Wayne his breakthrough role and reintroduced American audiences to the man who would become one of their most lasting movie icons. Two Johns, making it happen. Stagecoach isn’t exactly a John Wayne movie despite the fact that John Wayne is in it; this was before the days of The Searchers, of She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, of The Quiet Man, even of Hondo, movies that each helped shape Wayne’s persona and forge his screen legend bit by bit. In Stagecoach, he’s just a man with a rifle, a mission of vengeance and a soft spot for a prostitute named Dallas. Rather than the tradition of Wayne, the film belongs to the tradition of strangers on a journey; it’s about an unlikely and incongruous grouping of humans banding together to make it to a common destination. They ride a dangerous road, but Ford’s great gift as a filmmaker is his knack for making peril buoyant and entertaining, and in Stagecoach he does both effortlessly. - Andy Crump, Paste

Trivia:
The original negatives of Stagecoach were either lost or destroyed. John Wayne had one positive print that had never been through a projector gate. In 1970, he permitted it to be used to produce a new negative, and that is the film seen today at film festivals. UCLA fully restored the film in 1996 from surviving elements and premiered it on cable's American Movie Classics network. The previous DVD releases by Warner Home Video did not contain the restored print, but rather a video print held in the Castle Hill/Caidin Trust library.

My Reflections:
While I agree with the consensus in regards to Ford’s masterpiece, I do feel that ‘other film’ doesn’t blend the comedy and tragedy as seamlessly. While I called that picture “The most perfect, imperfect movie I’d ever seen” in my LB'd review, Stagecoach is pristine. The timing, the balance and blending of comedy and hardship is spot on. It’s just textbook cinema at its finest… even if I do rank that ‘other movie’ higher.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 14, 2018, 09:32:44 PM
#6 – SHANE
”Joey, there's no living with... with a killing. There's no going back from one. Right or wrong, it's a brand. A brand sticks. There's no going back. Now you run on home to your mother, and tell her... tell her everything's all right. And there aren't any more guns in the valley.” - Shane


https://www.youtube.com/v/9vWNrFP4-AY
107 points on 6 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #4 (MartyS [Gromit])

Director: George Stevens

Stars: Alan Ladd, Jean Arthur, Van Heflin, Jack Palance, Brandon De Wilde

Subgenre: Traditional Western, but with a progressive slant

Beloved adaptation of Jack Schaefer’s wonderful novel, with Alan Ladd perfect as the buckskinned gunfighter trying to hang up his six shooter but finding that “There’s no living with a killing”. Memorable for so many reasons, from the Oscar-winning cinematography and Jack Palance’s gleeful bad guy, to the lump in the throat ending which still resonates as little Joey implores “Come back Shane!” - Graeme Ross, Independent

Shane is another of the great Hollywood westerns and probably the most archetypal and mythical in its execution. The heroes are truly good, the villains badder than bad. It explores one of the classic Western expansion themes, cattle ranching—or the freedom and lawlessness of the open ranch—versus farming, which eventually leads to civilization and settling down in one place, bringing families and the laws of the city into play. Visually a character straight out of the Old Testament, Rufus Ryker (Emile Meyer) is a shaggy bearded cattle baron hell-bent on driving farming families from the land he considers his. A mysterious rider named Shane (Alan Ladd) arrives in the nick of time to bolster the courage of a group of homesteaders led by Joe Starrett (Van Heflin). Shane and Ryker, along with their cohorts, are relics of the past, ultimately doomed to extinction once the wives and children move in. Unlike Ryker, Shane knows this, and spells it out in their final showdown. The future of the West is in cities and communities. There is no place for lawless men like them in these new frontiers. All these years later, we know that Shane was wrong. Killing and lawlessness still abound in the cities, and big business still tramples the rights of the common man. The film is a reminder, though, that if communities band together, holding strong in faith and trusting one another, they can take back what is rightfully theirs and shape a collective destiny. - Joe Pettit Jr, Paste

Trivia:
The 2017 film Logan drew substantial thematic influence from Shane, and formally acknowledged it with a series of specific dialog references and scene clips. As the film ends, Shane's farewell words to Joey are recited, verbatim, at the title character's grave.

The film was completed in 1951 but George Stevens' editing process was so rigorous that it wasn't released until 1953. This drove up the costs of what should have been a simple, straightforward Western; in fact, they spiraled so much that Paramount approached Howard Hughes about taking on the property, but he declined. He changed his mind when he saw a rough cut and offered to buy the film on the spot. This made Paramount rethink its strategy--originally it was going to release it as a "B" picture but then decided it should be one of the studio's flagship films of the year. This proved to be a good decision, as the film was a major success and easily recouped its inflated budget.

My Review: https://letterboxd.com/captainquint/film/shane/ (https://letterboxd.com/captainquint/film/shane/)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 15, 2018, 12:01:13 AM
Somehow I've never seen BUTCH CASSIDY & THE SUNDANCE KID (and this is in spite of Paul Newman being my favourite actor)

FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE is def my least favourite of the Man with No Name Trilogy. Didn't make my list.

STAGECOACH was my entry to classic westerns. I love it very much.

SHANE is a wonderful film, ranked #5 on my list.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: PsychoGoatee on October 15, 2018, 02:33:36 AM
Love Butch Cassidy, very cool movie. Dig that Dollars movie, I remember renting it as a kid and finding it really badass, been a while since I watched it again.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 04:40:03 AM
I re-watched Shane and She Wore a Yellow Ribbon some months ago because I noticed several folks on Letterboxd were downgrading them, and I thought, maybe they haven't aged well. Maybe I need to revisit them and see?

Yellow Ribbon didn't hold up as well. Still enjoyed it, but mostly for Wayne's performance. But Shane is as memorable as it was in my youth. Even better because I was able to appreciate the nuances. It still resonates and I ranked it 5th as well.


I haven't seen Butch and Sundance since it played in the Drive-In back in late 69, 70...? (Yeah the Drive-In was a big part of my youth) so that one didn't make mine. Nor did For a Few $ More (I agree with Edward on that one)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Johnny Unusual on October 15, 2018, 05:59:24 AM
I liked Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid but I've only seen it once and it didn't stick in my mind strongly enough to make it high on my list.  Still, it's on there and it's well worth watching.

For a Few Dollars More is a good movie and El Indio is a great villain.  I love the music watch showdown music.

https://www.youtube.com/v/J84FPJAb7rM
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: CJones on October 15, 2018, 08:34:23 AM
Top 10? I'm predicting a Sergio Leone movie will be number 1.

Yeah, I fully expect #1 to be The Good, The Bad and the Ugly. But I guess we'll see.

Probably, though there is a John Ford movie that is a very strong contender.

You mean The Searchers? Yeah, that's gotta be in the top 5 somewhere.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Russoguru on October 15, 2018, 12:04:13 PM
Uhhh George? I ranked Butch Cassidy and the Sundance kid as Number 3 on my list.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 06:25:41 PM
Uhhh George? I ranked Butch Cassidy and the Sundance kid as Number 3 on my list.

I checked the PM and you had it at #2, but it's a partial, so points wise it's actually comparable to other peoples 16th pick (10 pts). The spread sheet doesn't differentiate partials or fulls and so points was what I zeroed in on. I did give you credit for your #1 and i'll add a credit for Butch
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 06:38:24 PM

#5 – A FISTFUL OF DOLLARS
"Get three coffins ready." (gunfight ensues) "My mistake. Four coffins..." - Joe


https://www.youtube.com/v/-X2DtiE7VLw
112 points on 8 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #2 (Linzoid)

Director: Sergio Leone

Stars: Clint Eastwood, Marianne Koch, John Wells, Jose Calvo, Joe Edger, Antonio Prieto, S. Rupp, W. Lukschy, Margherita Lozano

Subgenre: Spaghetti Western

By the time Sergio Leone made this film, Italians had already produced about 20 films ironically labelled "spaghetti westerns." Leone approached the genre with great love and humor. Although the plot was admittedly borrowed from Akira Kurosawa's Yojimbo (1961), Leone managed to create a work of his own that would serve as a model for many films to come. Clint Eastwood plays a cynical gunfighter who comes to a small border town and offers his services to two rivaling gangs. Neither gang is aware of his double play, and each thinks it is using him, but the stranger will outwit them both. The picture was the first installment in a cycle commonly known as the "Dollars" trilogy. Later, United Artists, who distributed it in the U.S., coined another term for it: the "Man With No Name" trilogy. While not as impressive as its follow-ups For a Few Dollars More (1965) and The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (1966), A Fistful of Dollars contains all of Leone's eventual trademarks: taciturn characters, precise framing, extreme close-ups, and the haunting music of Ennio Morricone. Not released in the U.S. until 1967 due to copyright problems, the film was decisive in both Clint Eastwood's career and the recognition of the Italian western. ~ Yuri German, Rovi

He made stronger movies throughout his career, but A Fistful of Dollars, for all of its influence over the Western from the 1960s forward, is arguably his most important. - Andy Crump, Paste

Trivia:
The Man With No Name actually had names, or was called by something by someone (here he’s called Joe). This might be a nod to Yojimbo and its sequel, Sanjuro, in which the protagonist, when asked his name, would make something up, based on what he saw on the landscape, etc.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 06:42:12 PM
Damn it, my signals being real fussy tonight and I keep getting kicked off the Internet. I'm heading out in a few hours and will use the hot-spot there to post the final 4 (and a bonus). See you then...
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Russoguru on October 15, 2018, 08:37:12 PM
Uhhh George? I ranked Butch Cassidy and the Sundance kid as Number 3 on my list.

I checked the PM and you had it at #2, but it's a partial, so points wise it's actually comparable to other peoples 16th pick (10 pts). The spread sheet doesn't differentiate partials or fulls and so points was what I zeroed in on. I did give you credit for your #1 and i'll add a credit for Butch
Ahhh, I see. Sorry George.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 08:53:22 PM
^ No prob

Well dad burn it and Gosh all fish hooks! (that's western sidekick swearing). Maybe it's the high winds we are having. But this isn't much better, But I should be able to post, it's just all very slow.

Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 08:54:04 PM
#4 – UNFORGIVEN
"It's a hell of a thing, killing a man. You take away all he's got and all he's ever gonna have." - Will Munny


https://www.youtube.com/v/ftTX4FoBWlE
147 points on 10 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #1 (George 2.0)

Director: Clint Eastwood

Stars: Clint Eastwood, Morgan Freeman, Gene Hackman, Richard Harris, Jaimz Woolvett, Saul Rubinek, Frances Fisher

Subgenre: Revisionist Western

A ruthless killer turned pig farmer reluctantly takes one last job, and carnage ensues. Eastwood deconstructs the myths and legends of the Western and the result is a revisionist masterpiece that deservedly won Oscars for best picture and best director - Rotten Tomatoes

Trivia:
The script floated around Hollywood for around 20 years. In the early 80s Francis Ford Coppola got a hold of it and wanted John Malkovich for the William Munny part. Thankfully, Clint Eastwood found it in his hands soon after.

My Reflections:
A masterpiece. Unforgiven is my favorite western, my favorite Eastwood film, my favorite film of ‘92, one of my top 25 movies of all time. The thing I find fascinating about the picture is that it deconstructs western myths… it’s message on violence is profound and devastating - and then from the ashes it reconstructs these legends anew, as Munny embodies the myth and becomes that larger than life western figure at the end.

A few thoughts on a recent viewing:
* Munny’s basically was an animal that was domesticated. When we first meet him he can’t even shoot, or get on his horse. That changes at the end.

* There’s a fair amount of humor, more than I remembered. Morgan Freeman’s reaction to the kid’s wild shooting is priceless. Even Munny’s threats at the end have a thread of humor. He’s saying things he doesn’t mean, just to scare the town-folks shitless into doing what he wants.

* The early killings hurt. They break your heart. Death is spoken of so casually, and is so prevalent in westerns overall… that you forget the cost. Eastwood made me an emotional wreck over these killings, he made me feel the cost.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 08:55:42 PM
#3 – THE SEARCHERS
”That’ll be the day” - Ethan Edwards (after being asked if he wanted to quit)


https://www.youtube.com/v/XYOp3l9wL1k
156 points on 7 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #1 (Edward J. Grugg III, Fred Garvin)

Director: John Ford

Stars: John Wayne, Jeffrey Hunter, Natalie Wood, Vera Miles, Ward Bond, Harry Brandon

Subgenre: Epic Western

The saga of a racist outsider’s search for his kidnapped niece still astounds in its dark power, beauty and all round magnificence. Complex, multi-layered and troubling, with a monumental performance from Wayne as the bigoted anti-hero, the film repays repeated viewing. - Graeme Ross, Independent

Wikipedia: Set during the Texas–Indian wars, John Wayne stars as a middle-aged Civil War veteran who spends years looking for his abducted niece (Natalie Wood), accompanied by his adoptive nephew (Jeffrey Hunter). Critic Roger Ebert found Wayne's character, Ethan Edwards, "one of the most compelling characters Ford and Wayne ever created".

The film was a commercial success. Since its release it has come to be considered a masterpiece and one of the greatest and most influential films ever made. It was named the greatest American western by the American Film Institute in 2008, and it placed 12th on the same organization's 2007 list of the 100 greatest American movies of all time. Entertainment Weekly also named it the best western. The British Film Institute's Sight & Sound magazine ranked it as the seventh best film of all time based on a 2012 international survey of film critics and in 2008, the French magazine Cahiers du Cinéma ranked The Searchers number 10 in their list of the 100 best films ever made.

Trivia
Why does Ethan specifically hate the Comanche? The answer to that is relayed in an indirect way… note the writing on the tombstone (which is the marker for Ethan’s mother) that Debbie hides behind during the attack. It states that she was killed by Comanche in her 41st year,

In the climactic scene, John Wayne and Natalie Wood run up the side of a hill in Monument Valley, Utah . . . and come down the other side of the hill in the Bronson Canyon area of Griffith Park, Los Angeles (647 miles away).

It’s said Buddy Holly wrote his song, “That’ll Be the Day” after seeing the picture.

My Review: https://letterboxd.com/captainquint/film/the-searchers/ (https://letterboxd.com/captainquint/film/the-searchers/) - which also includes talk of a superb non-fiction book that details the real life stories that inspired a novel, and eventually a film.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 15, 2018, 08:56:19 PM
A FISTFUL OF DOLLARS - As I mentioned earlier, I got to see this on the big screen a couple of weeks ago, and I also revisited Yojimbo right after. Both are incredible.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 15, 2018, 08:58:17 PM
UNFORGIVEN - Never seen it.

THE SEARCHERS - I cannot believe this isn't number one. I'm gonna fight everyone who listed anything above it ;)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 08:59:01 PM
And before revealing the winner of the big gun down between 2 obvious opponents. Here’s a look at several noteworthy pictures that just missed the 50.

This one got kicked off with the final list. Vera Cruz and the Coward Robert Ford took its place (and pushed the list to a Top 51)...

#52 - The Quick and the Dead
26 points on 2 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking #13 (MartyS (Gromit), Johnny Unusual)

https://www.youtube.com/v/t5xZ-hupBS0

Sam Raimi’s sincere neo-Western is notable for several reasons: Joss Whedon’s contributions to the script (along with, reportedly, John Sayles); the American film debut of Russell Crowe; the final screen appearance of Woody Strode (Spartacus, his close friend John Ford’s Westerns The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, 7 Women and Two Rode Together); a gender-bending narrative that sends Sharon Stone’s monotone gunfighter, “The Lady,” on a righteous quest into the town of Redemption (natch) to avenge her father’s death via quick-draw contest. Gene Hackman relishes his turn as the tyrannical mayor, not so subtly named Herod, responsible for said killing, as does a pre-Titanic Leonardo DiCaprio as cocked-brow smartass “The Kid.” Not the least of note here is Dante Spinotti’s characteristically vivid cinematography. - Amanda Schurr, Paste (who ranked it #100)

After That…

#53 - Support Your Local Sheriff
Popped up on 2 lists (Freds and Coles) and received 25 points. It’s not a flick you’ll see on many western “Best Of” lists, but it is a funny one. I didn’t vote for it, but it’s worth checking out for a laugh.

#54 - Forty Guns
Also 25 points on 2 lists (Edward & Charles) - it’s no secret that the Western is a male dominated genre. But there are a few strong women to be found. From the classic era: Veronica Lake in Ramrod, Marie Windsor in Hellfire, Beverly Garland in Gunslinger… and was any gal tougher than Barbara Stanwyck - Who can be seen here and in Anthony Mann’s The Furies

#55 - Three Amigos
24 pts on 3 lists (Linzoid, Johnny, CJones) - 3 lists, but mostly at the bottom half - thus it was pushed out of the 50.

#56 - The Tall T
24 pts on 2 list - http://forum.rifftrax.com/index.php?topic=34351.msg1000390#msg1000390 (http://forum.rifftrax.com/index.php?topic=34351.msg1000390#msg1000390)

(http://fo4mw16y1z42edr6j2m4n6vt.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/gowest2.jpg)

#57 - Go West
Though they received a few votes, silent films were kept silent. Which is not surprising. Even Paste failed to name a single silent in their top 100… and Paste staff, You’ll never convince me that Riders of Destiny is a greater movie than 3 Bad Men, Hell’s Hinges, or this Keaton classic. Which received 22 points on 2 lists. (Mine and Stethan’s)

Others on multiple lists:
Serenity - 20 on 2 * Dances With Wolves - 19 pts on 3

And here are a few big titles that received 1 to 0 votes…

On NO lists- Little Big Man, The Man From Laramie, Django, The Missing, The Great Northfield Minnesota Raid, The Proposition, Pat Garret and Billy the Kid, 7 Women, Day of the Outlaw, Fort Apache

On 1 list - El Topo, 3:10 to Yuma (1957), Open Range, The Shooting & Ride the Whirlwind, Terror in a Texas Town (a cult favorite where a man with a whaling spear has a showdown with a gunfighter!!)

And well, there’s more… I could go on. But I wont - lets get to that final 2!
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 09:00:57 PM
#2 – THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY
”You see, in this world there's two kinds of people, my friend: Those with loaded guns and those who dig. You dig.” - Blondie


https://www.youtube.com/v/WCN5JJY_wiA
212 points on 12 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #1 (Stethancantus, Johnny Unusual, Russoguru [partial])

Director: Sergio Leone

Stars: Clint Eastwood, Eli Wallach, Lee Van Cleef, Aldo Giuffrè, Mario Brega, Luigi Pistilli

Subgenre: Spaghetti Western

In the last and the best installment of his so-called "Dollars" trilogy of Sergio Leone-directed "spaghetti westerns," Clint Eastwood reprised the role of a taciturn, enigmatic loner. Here he searches for a cache of stolen gold against rivals the Bad (Lee Van Cleef), a ruthless bounty hunter, and the Ugly (Eli Wallach), a Mexican bandit. Though dubbed "the Good," Eastwood's character is not much better than his opponents -- he is just smarter and shoots faster. The film's title reveals its ironic attitude toward the canonized heroes of the classical western. "The real West was the world of violence, fear, and brutal instincts," claimed Leone. "In pursuit of profit there is no such thing as good and evil, generosity or deviousness; everything depends on chance, and not the best wins but the luckiest." Immensely entertaining and beautifully shot in Techniscope by Tonino Delli Colli, the movie is a virtually definitive "spaghetti western," rivaled only by Leone's own Once Upon a Time in the West (1968). The main musical theme by Ennio Morricone hit #1 on the British pop charts. Originally released in Italy at 177 minutes, the movie was later cut for its international release. ~ Yuri German, Rovi

Trivia
In 1966 the Spanish Army built Sad Hill Cemetery with over 5000 graves at Mirandilla Valley in Burgos for the final sequence in the movie. When filming ended, the set was abandoned just like they built it and for half a century, nature has been trying to reclaim it. Then in October of 2015, a group of film fans decided to start digging... and under 3 inches of ground they found the original paved circle. For months, people from all around Europe travelled to Sad Hill to unearth and restore the iconic film set.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 09:02:03 PM
#1 – ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST
"How can you trust a man that wears both a belt and suspenders? Man can't even trust his own pants." - Frank


https://www.youtube.com/v/Yw-Av9BpC-w
221 points on 11 of 13 lists - Highest Ranking: #1 (MartyS [Gromit], PsychoGoatee, Charles Castle)

Director: Sergio Leone

Stars: Claudia Cardinale, Henry Fonda, Charles Bronson, Jason Robards, Gabriele Ferzetti, Keenan Wynn

Subgenre: Epic/Spaghetti Western

‘Looks like we’re shy one horse!’ ‘No, you brought two too many…’ After 15 minutes of dripping water, squeaky windmills and buzzing flies, Sergio Leone has Charles Bronson dispense a line that’s not only one of the coolest ever delivered in the history of the Wild West, but one which reassures us that what he’s got in store will be well worth the wait. Bronson’s existential zinger also hints at the film’s thematic preoccupations.

This is an iron-horse opera: the railroad is presented as an implacable force that will eradicate the cowboy way. There’s no rerouting, delaying or impeding Leone’s locomotive. The characters all play out their roles as bystanders to the rush of progress – killing, bribing, seducing, deceiving each other even while the railhead pushes inexorably on, regardless of the human collateral.

Even the tycoon behind the venture doesn’t make the distance. The sweep of modernity through the Wild West has never been so pitiless, nor, in Leone’s vision, more terribly glorious. - Adam Lee Davies, Time Out

There’s a reason that Leone’s masterpiece is considered one of the greatest movies ever made and not just one of the great Westerns: Once Upon a Time in the West is an enduring monument of its era, its genre and filmmaking itself. - Andy Crump, Paste

Trivia:
The Indian woman who flees from the train station in the opening sequence was played by Hawaiian Princess Luukialuana (Luana) Kalaeloa (Luana Strode). She was the wife of Woody Strode.

John Carpenter, a huge fan of Sergio Leone and this film, had "Jill's Theme" by Ennio Morricone played as he walked down the aisle at his wedding with Adrienne Barbeau.

My Thoughts:
This operatic slow burn floored me the first time I saw it. It was so, so… grand, majestic, sweeping… and others words that escape me. Everything about it, from the cinematography to Morricone’s incredible score serves its epic nature and personality.

I also like how Leone plays with our expectation. Robards was best known at the time as an urbane Broadway actor, and yet he’s cast as the uncouth bandit. Bronson looks like a villain, Fonda looks like a hero, what with those blue eyes and that kind nature and thoughtful way of speaking. I don’t know if younger or casual viewers can appreciate what it did to us back then… I mean watch 12 Angry Men, THAT’S how we defined Fonda. So what he does here in his first appearance was shocking. Jaws hit the floor.





Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 15, 2018, 09:02:05 PM
I'm not surprised that no one else voted for The Shooting & Ride the Whirlwind, but really, no one else for the original 3:10 to Yuma. DISGRACEFUL.

Sad that Sam Fuller didn't make the list. 40 Guns is such a blast. Check it out!
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 15, 2018, 09:03:18 PM
THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY and ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST are both fantastically fun. I can certainly see why Leone placed so high.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 09:05:10 PM
I'm not surprised that no one else voted for The Shooting & Ride the Whirlwind, but really, no one else for the original 3:10 to Yuma. DISGRACEFUL.

Sad that Sam Fuller didn't make the list. 40 Guns is such a blast. Check it out!


I liked all of those (especially The Shooting, which I re-watched not long ago), they just got squeezed out of my 25.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 09:08:02 PM
Phew, well that was a long dusty ride, but a good one I think. I want to thank the Magnificent 13 who provided lists.

Aside from myself there was Edward, Johnny, Stethan, Charles (the King of the West - as all but 3 of his movies made the list), Russoguru, Linzoid, Cole, MartyS, Fred (who I had to pester, but he came through) Psychogoatee & CJones (who promised partials, but delivered full ones) and our special guest, Travis from Letterboxd.

One final list:

(https://pbs.twimg.com/profile_images/700573737901432833/NXDJsgPM.jpg)
The Directors
Here’s an LoC filmography of the top directors, and what was nominated or won entry on the list. With a minimum of 4 movies voted for

John Ford
1. The Searchers #3
2. Stagecoach #7
3. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance #13
4. My Darling Clementine #35
5. Drums Along The Mohawk (nominated)
6. 3 Bad Men (nominated)
7. She Wore a Yellow Ribbon (nominated)
8. Two Rode Together (nominated)

Anthony Mann
1. The Naked Spur #27
2. Winchester ‘73 #40
3. Man of the West #41
4. The Tin Star (nominated)
5. The Far Country (nominated)
6. The Furies (nominated)

Sergio Leone
1. Once Upon a Time in the West #1
2. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly #2
3. A Fistful of Dollars #5
4. For a Few Dollars More #8
5. Duck, You Sucker (nominated)

Clint Eastwood
1. Unforgiven #4
2. The Outlaw Josey Wales #20
3. High Plains Drifter #25
4. Pale Rider #49

Budd Boetticher (with actor Randolph Scott)
1. 7 Men From Now #45
2. The Tall T (nominated)
3. Ride Lonesome (nominated)
4. Decision at Sundown (nominated)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 15, 2018, 09:12:25 PM
Well, I feel like my list had a good showing anyway.

1   The Searchers
2   My Darling Clementine
3   Stagecoach (1939)
4   Johnny Guitar
5   Shane
6   The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

7   3:10 to Yuma (1957)
8   Pursued - Excellent western/noir hybrid starring Robert Mitchum.
9   High Noon
10   Forty Guns
11   A Fistful of Dollars
12   Red River
13   The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
14   True Grit (2010)
15   The Professionals

16   Jubal - A very underrated little film, basically a western version of Othello. And Ernest Borgnine is so great in it.
17   Once Upon a Time in the West
18   The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada - A modern western directed by Tommy lee Jones, and really worth hunting down if you get the chance.
19   Ride in the Whirlwind
20   The Misfits - Clarke Gable's last film. with Marylin Monroe and Monty Clift.
21   Drums Along the Mohawk
22   The Treasure of the Sierra Madre
23   Giant
24   The Shooting
25   Two Rode Together
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 09:16:59 PM
22   The Treasure of the Sierra Madre - Thought this would make the list, but perhaps it doesn't spring to mind as a western?

It did. At #35
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 15, 2018, 09:17:58 PM
22   The Treasure of the Sierra Madre - Thought this would make the list, but perhaps it doesn't spring to mind as a western?

It did. At #35

Oops, I missed marking it off. :P Well. Good.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 09:24:39 PM
My List - Charles' votes for the Aldrich films helped me out, I wound up with a good showing. My silent films were kicked to the curb and one talkie.

1. Unforgiven
2. The Searchers
3. Once Upon a Time in the West
4. Man of the West
5. Shane
6. Stagecoach
7. One-Eyed Jacks
8. True Grit 1969
9. Ulzana’s Raid

10. The Tall T
11. Winchester ‘73
12. McCabe and Mrs. Miller
13. Naked Spur
14. The Great Silence
15. Dead Man

16. Go West
17. Vera Cruz
18. The Red River
19. Rio Bravo
20. Godless
21. High Planes Drifter
22. Ox-Bow Incident
23. Outlaw Josey Wales

24. 3 Bad Men
25. Hells Hinges
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: PsychoGoatee on October 15, 2018, 10:26:17 PM
Great countdown! And cool to see Once Upon A Time In The West at the top, that's such a great movie, unique and something special. It's cool that Dario Argento is a writer on that, I'm a big fan of his as well.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 15, 2018, 11:25:53 PM
Mr. Bungle Alert!
Fred just informed me of a mistake. He had 4 Boetticher films on his list, and it appears I switched points on two of them. I gave 7 Men From Now's points to The Tall T and vice-a-versa. I've doubled checked all your entries and it looks like that was my only cock-up. 

You can find a NEW write-up here for 7 Men From Now (http://forum.rifftrax.com/index.php?topic=34351.msg1000340#msg1000340)

It's just behind Rango, which moves up a slot. So if you want, you can adjust your likes accordingly.

I'm keeping Tall T as a bonus entry, no need to throw away good work. But it's no longer in the 50. Not a major change. A couple films move up a slot. Budd Boetticher is still represented on the LoC, Fred doesn't lose a pick. I do, but Cole gains one.

So, so sorry about that.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: ColeStratton on October 15, 2018, 11:47:45 PM
Good list, 'pardners. Though I hoped Support Your Local Sheriff and Cat Ballou would squeak in there. Here's mine:

1.   The Professionals
2.   Silverado
3.   Lonesome Dove

4.   Support Your Local Sheriff
5.   Johnny Guitar
6.   The Gunfighter (1950)
7.   The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
8.   The Naked Spur
9.   Once Upon a Time in the West
10.   The Magnificent Seven (1960)
11.   Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
12.   The Searchers

13.   Cat Ballou
14.   7 Men From Now
15.   Gunfight at the O.K. Corral
16.   Open Range
17.   High Noon
18.   The Good, The Bad and the Ugly
19.   Rio Bravo
20.   Tombstone
21.   3:10 to Yuma (2007)
22.   Winchester ‘73
23.   Stagecoach
24.   Unforgiven

25.   Young Guns II
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Charles Castle on October 16, 2018, 12:29:51 AM
I can't believe how quickly this went. This list is amazing. There are only a handful of films on the entire thing that I don't think are great. I have not had a chance to read all of the write-ups yet, but the selection of essays for the ones I have looked at is really excellent.

1. Once Upon a Time in the West
2. The Searchers (1956)
3. High Noon
4. Ride the High Country
5. The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

6. The Tin Star - What an amazing movie this is. Check it out, won't you?
7. Vera Cruz
8. McCabe and Mrs. Miller
9. Rio Bravo
10. The Wild Bunch
11. The Great Silence
12. Stagecoach
13. For a Few Dollars More
14. Ulzana's Raid
15. The Naked Spur
16. The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford

17. Forty Guns - Totally agree with Edward. This movie is a masterpiece with one of the greatest roles for a female in the entire genre.
18. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
19. Dead Man
20. High Plains Drifter
21. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance

22. Rancho Notorious
23. Winchester ’73
24. Unforgiven
25. Johnny Guitar


Thanks for all of your hard work putting all of this together.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Johnny Unusual on October 16, 2018, 05:55:11 AM
I'll post my list later.  I just want to say that George did a fantastic job hosting the list and I'm glad it turned out so well.

I'm a big Leone fan, especially #1 and 2.  I love The Good, The Bad and the Ugly because... it's almost a comedy.  It is crazy over the top and arch and it's a buddy comedy and it's also very Looney Tunes, like in this cannon scene.

https://www.youtube.com/v/iPC4rIZX5qI

BTW, come for the cannon, stay for the Ecstasy of Gold.  The film has one of the most epic endings in film history, with epicness piled on epicness until it builds to an intolerable degree of tension.  Even though the actual "action" lasts for a second, that epic staredown is one of the greatest "fight scenes" in movie history.

No slight to Lee Van Cleef, who kills it, but this film is all about the interplay between Tuco and Blondie.  As I said, this has a lot in common with Looney Tunes and these two are basically Daffy Duck and Bugs Bunny, respectively (though Bugs if he was more of a jerk).  I think that's why I like Tuco more.  He's not the guy who is going to "win", nor does he deserve to (even in winning, he completely loses his dignity at the end of the film), but there is a lot of pathos to his character (much more than we get with the unflappable Blondie) with his brother making him a much more sympathetic antiheroes despite his awful crimes.

Oh, and I love how the film drips with irony whenever it refers to Blondie as "the Good."  This is one of my all time favourites and the film that changed me from having a respect for Westerns into a love of the genre.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: stethacantus on October 16, 2018, 06:26:57 AM
while compiling my list I was surprised to find out that I had seen more than 25 Westerns in my lifetime. But not much more. Just missing the top 25 are every Western riffed on MST3K, which explains all the bottom five movies on my list.  Also not making my list: Lonesome Dove and the Kung Fu pilot movie, because I counted them as a television series, any Western I had only seen half of, and Back to the Future III for being more science fiction than Western.

#1 The Good The Bad and the Ugly ( 1966 )
#2 Blazing Saddles ( 1974 )
#3 Dead Man ( 1995 )
#4 Silverado ( 1985 )
#5 Young Guns ( 1988 )
#6 The Magnificent Seven ( 1960 )
#7 Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid ( 1969 )
#8 Mark of Zorro ( 1920 )
    Three silent films make my list.  There would have been more, but for some reason I completely forgot about The Wind ( 1928 ). The silent era was when the Hollywood Western hit it's peak, replaced in the sound era in popularity by the musical. Also, the major studios began shying away from making Westerns because they required being shot outside a soundstage where the microphones kept picking up the sounds of nearby automobiles and airplanes, requiring them to keep retaking scenes. The independents like Republic Pictures didn't seem to care that that their Westerns were suppose to be taking place in the 1800s, but you could hear the sound of motors in the background. And they shot all their action scenes without recording any sound. There was sort of a rebound in the popularity of Westerns in the 1050s, mostly due to television. But the genre was never as popular as it had been in the 1920s
#9 Once Upon A Time in the West ( 1968 )
#10 A Fistful of Dollars ( 1964 )
#11 Way Out West ( 1937 )
   Every comedy team made an obligatory Western. This was Laurel & Hardy's contribution to the genre. It's the film with this classic moment:
https://www.youtube.com/v/jwLlo9lFjQw
#12 The Toll Gate ( 1920 )
#13 Bad Company ( 1972 )
#14 Go West ( 1925 )
#15 Shanghai Noon ( 2000 )
#16 Shane ( 1953 )
#17 Once Upon a Time in China and America ( 1997 )
#18 Duck, you Sucker!  ( a.k.a. A Fistful of Dynamite  a.k.a.  Once Upon a Time... The Revolution ) ( 1971 )
#19 For a Few Dollars More ( 1965 )
#20 The Frisco Kid ( 1979 )
#21 Billy the Kid vs Dracula ( 1966 )
#22 Stranger and the Gunfighter  ( a.k.a Blood Money ) ( 1974 )
#23 Heavens Gate ( 1980 )
     Depite it's reputation as one of the worst films ever made, it all bdepends on what edit of the film you watch. I saw one of the directors cuts, and it was a very decent epic. The problem is that Michael Cimino shot a  five and a half hour film that was cut down to about three hours for the general release.
#24 Carry on Cowboy ( 1965 )
#25 Lone Ranger ( 1980 )

Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 16, 2018, 06:48:39 AM
I'll post my list later.  I just want to say that George did a fantastic job hosting the list and I'm glad it turned out so well.

I'm a big Leone fan, especially #1 and 2.  I love The Good, The Bad and the Ugly because... it's almost a comedy.  It is crazy over the top and arch and it's a buddy comedy and it's also very Looney Tunes, like in this cannon scene...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Awesome! You know it's funny, when I was doing write-ups I was thinking, "I should ask Johnny to write a reflection for G.B.U.", because I'd not seen it in a while. And what do you know, here it is, without me asking. I put a hold on it at the library a month ago, but it must still be as popular as ever because 4 people were ahead of me. I'm still waiting for it to show up.

Thanks for the kind words everyone. Westerns are near and dear to me, and I'm overall happy with how this turned out.

It did seem to go by quickly. I'm going to miss working on it, sharing results and such.

Aside from positing my first LoC mistake (I thought I caught 'em all, then I got a text, "Um, I meant to tell you this earlier, but forgot...") This is my first hosting gig where Bill Murray didn't make the list. I think the closest he's gotten to a Western was a bit part where he's seen dressed up as John Wayne in the Searchers, in that horrible Charlie Swan movie.

But here's a pic of Bill from that flick, just so I can say that Murray has shown up in every LoC I've hosted.  ;)

(http://theplaylist.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/bill-murray-charlie-swan.jpg)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Johnny Unusual on October 16, 2018, 07:51:27 AM
1. The Good, The Bad and the Ugly
2. Once Upon a Time in the West
3. The Treasure of the Sierra Madre
4. Unforgiven
5. High Plains Drifter
6. True Grit (2010)
7. For a Few Dollars More
8. High Noon
9. The Ox-Bow Incident
10. The Hateful Eight
11. No Country for Old Men

12. The Three Amigos! - This one has some delightful musical numbers
13. The Quick and the Dead - Sam Riami's western doesn't feel particularly "spaghetti" but his over the top directing style is a perfect way to bring that energy into what would otherwise be a conventional Western.
14. Bone Tomahawk - If you haven't seen this one, check it out, but be warned that this one, even more than the Quentin Tarantino, is probably the goriest on this or any other list.
15. Django Unchained
16. Maverick

17. Serenity - I'm really surprised this didn't show up.  I mean, I would have expected it to be near the bottom, but all the same.
18. The Outlaw Josie Wales
19. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
20. Dead Man (1995)
21. Back to the Future Part 3
22. Pale Rider
23. Blazing Saddles
24. A Fistful of Dollars
25. Rango
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: MartyS (Gromit) on October 16, 2018, 09:30:39 AM
My list, crazy that I had The Quick and The Dead at the same spot as Johnny U.

These are all the westerns I've seen except for Maverick, if I had remembered that one it would have replaced Traded at the bottom, Traded was not good.  Some others that showed up on the list seemed familiar so I probably saw them on TV as a little kid.

1   Once Upon A Time In The West 1968
2   The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly 1966
3   Unforgiven 1992
4   Shane 1953
5   Godless 2017
6   Django Unchained 2012
7   For A Few Dollars More 1965
8   Pale Rider 1985
9   High Plains Drifter 1973
10   Hang'em High 1968
11   A Fistful Of Dollars 1964
12   True Grit 2010
13   The Quick And The Dead 1995
14    3:10 To Yuma 2007
15   Blazing Saddles 1974
16   The Wild Bunch 1969
17   100 Rifles 1969
18   Rango 2011
19   Hannie Caulder 1971
20   Dances With Wolves 1990
21   The Treasure Of The Sierra Madre 1948
22   Two Mules For Sister Sara 1970
23   Cowboys & Aliens 2011
24   The Wild Wild West 1999
25   Traded 2016
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Russoguru on October 16, 2018, 09:31:39 AM
My... short list
1.   The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly
2.   Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
3.   Unforgiven
4.   Blazing Saddles
5.   A fistful of Dollars
6.   True Grit (2010)
7.   Pale Rider
8.   For a few dollars more
9.   Tombstone
10.   Back to the future, Part 3
11.   High plains drifter
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: linszoid on October 16, 2018, 12:11:45 PM
It was nice to see that bit player from MST3k Episode 801 "Revenge of the Creature" appear in so many of these movies.

My list:
Blazing Saddles
A Fistful of Dollars
Back to the Future 3
McClintock
Maverick
Paint Your Wagons
The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
Tombstone
Unforgiven
The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
The Outlaw Josey Wales
The Shootist
For A Few Dollars More
A Million Ways to Die in the West
An American Tail: Fievel Goes West
Cowboys and Aliens
The Searchers
3 Amigos
The Magnificent Seven
3:10 to Yuma (2007)
Oblivion
Wyatt Earp
Last of the Wild Horses
Gunslinger
Dances With Wolves

Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Johnny Unusual on October 16, 2018, 01:07:35 PM
Paint Your Wagons


(https://frinkiac.com/meme/S09E11/138954.jpg?b64lines=IFdFTEwsCiBHUkFCIEEgQlJVU0ggQU5EIEpPSU4gSU4uCiA=)
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: linszoid on October 16, 2018, 03:02:08 PM
Yeah, I was always more a fan of the comedic Westerns

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VM5-xFenaZI
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Russoguru on October 16, 2018, 04:07:32 PM
No intent to offend you at all Linszoid, but I'm not sure I'd consider A million ways to die in the west a comedy... a western? Yes, definitely.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Edward J Grug III on October 16, 2018, 04:45:06 PM
I rewatched 3 Amigos pretty recently and it was a lot better than I thought it would be. Not top 25 western material, but fun for sure.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Charles Castle on October 16, 2018, 05:45:25 PM
I rewatched 3 Amigos pretty recently and it was a lot better than I thought it would be. Not top 25 western material, but fun for sure.
I had this exact same experience 3 or 4 months ago. Probably enhanced by the fact that I had watched Vera Cruz a few nights earlier and got a big kick out of the connections.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: CJones on October 17, 2018, 11:24:34 AM
I want to thank George 2.0, not just for running this list, but for getting me to watch movies that I otherwise would not have.

Here was my list:

1 The Magnificent Seven (the original one) - This is honestly the only western I can think of that I actually saw in the theater.
2 Tombstone
3 The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
4 3:10 to Yuma (2007) - Never seen the original 1957 movie.

5 Last of the Mohicans
6 True Grit (2010 remake) - Some people may consider this sacrilidge, but Hailee Steinfeld was incredible as Mattie Ross.
7 Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.
8 Rango
9 The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
10 A Fist Full of Dollars
11 Lonesome Dove
12 The Outlaw Josse Wales
13 Once Upon a Time in the West

14 Dances with Wolves <- Did this not make it, or am I just not seeing it?
15 The Searchers
16 Unforgiven
17 Blazing Saddles
18 Back to the Future 3
19 Young Guns
20 The Hateful Eight
21 Django Unchained

22 Westworld
23 Hidalgo
24 Three Amigos
25 Wild Wild West
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Johnny Unusual on October 17, 2018, 11:32:50 AM
Dances With Wolves didn't make it.  I wonder if Costner's other ill-considered adventure movies put a sour taste in peoples mouth for Costner.  Frankly, I just haven't seen it.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: MartyS (Gromit) on October 17, 2018, 11:52:03 AM
Dances With Wolves didn't make it.  I wonder if Costner's other ill-considered adventure movies put a sour taste in peoples mouth for Costner.  Frankly, I just haven't seen it.

I had it pretty low on my list, it's one of those movies for me that I like less and less the more I watch it, first time thought it was great, second time less so, didn't make it all the way through trying to watch it a 3rd time.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: stethacantus on October 17, 2018, 12:25:47 PM
No one submitted the Cowboy Bebop Movie?
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Russoguru on October 17, 2018, 07:03:41 PM
No one submitted the Cowboy Bebop Movie?
Alright, that's a bad joke even by my standards.  :o Okay, to be fair MAYBE the Game Grumps would look at that and say "Mmmmmm! Funny Joke!"
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: George-2.0 on October 17, 2018, 09:50:32 PM
Dances With Wolves seems to have lost some of its luster. It didn't make Paste's Top 100, or Time Out's Top 50 (Though Costner's other Western, Open Range, did)

An aside: I strangely was not as in love with Westerns on TV - The Big Valley (too plastic), Maverick, Rawhide, Wagon Train, Have Gun Will Travel, etc...

Those I did watch and enjoy as a kid were Gunsmoke and Bonanza. And I loved the first 2 seasons of Kung Fu, and Cheyenne was solid. But my favorite is probably the Rifleman. Aside from him being the fastest rifle in the west, and the action and drama that took place. I like the genuine love and respect the father and son had for one another. I thought both Johnny Crawford and Chuck Conners were great in their roles. Plus it was developed by Sam Peckinpah.

From wiki... "Peckinpah, who wrote and directed many early episodes, based many characters and plots on his own childhood on a ranch. His insistence on violent realism and complex characterizations, as well as his refusal to sugarcoat the lessons he felt the Rifleman's son needed to learn about life, put him at odds with the show's producers at Four Star. "

Oh and it inspired all those "Pa! Pa!" riffs on MST3K.

Good show.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: CJones on October 19, 2018, 06:02:10 PM
No one submitted the Cowboy Bebop Movie?

I actually did consider it, but felt it went against the spirit of the list.

Same goes for Star Wars. Many people consider this a western in all but the most literal sense, but it just didn't seem appropriate for the topic.

Oh, in addition to the actual westerns I watched thanks to this list, I finally got around to watching Chinatown. Man, that was a good movie.
Title: Re: LoC #112 -Top 50 Western Films
Post by: Russoguru on October 19, 2018, 07:22:40 PM
I wanted to put Bubba Ho-Tep on my list, but I didn't think it was exactly right for the genre we are dealing with.