The 100 Greatest Western Movies of All Time: Including Five Youve Never Heard Of by Philip ArmourAs a boy who never grew up, I retain a not-so-secret enjoyment of the Western movie genre. In spite of the fact that theyre unrealistic and exploitative, I cant shake my boyhood affection for the oaters; some titles I have watched literally dozens of times. Consequently, I put the lie to the subtitle of this book in that I had actually heard of every title named therein. Top 100 lists of anything are naturally subjective; I wouldnt say that I would rank these titles all in necessarily the same order as the author, and there might be two or three titles I would replace with movies that didnt make his cut, but for the most part I am in total agreement with his picks for the top movies.
One thing I didnt like about the book is that there are a few spoilers that might ruin the ending of a movie or two for the unsuspecting reader. On the plus side, scattered throughout the pages are bits of western and movie-related trivia that will be of no surprise to western buffs but will be entertaining for the average reader. Also, the final chapter is a sort of tourists guide to places that have become iconic to the western film industry, complete with recommended accommodations and websites for the odd museum or other point of interest. Perhaps the book isnt a great literary marvel, but it is effectively written and achieves what the writer set out to accomplish.
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The 25 Best Westerns Of All Time
Sony It's a genre filled with some of the greatest movies ever made, and though Westerns aren't as common coming out of Hollywood these days as they were in decades past, a good one can still find its way to audiences from time to time. This weekend, the reboot of "The Magnificent Seven" in theaters starting Friday is worth your time if you're nostalgic for epic gun battles and men on horseback. And while we have you thinking about the ol' West, we've put together a list of the 11 best Westerns of all time. But thanks to Clint Eastwood, the genre got a shot in the arm as he starred and directed this somber look at an over-the-hill gunslinger Eastwood who takes one last job. The movie also includes great performances from Morgan Freeman and Gene Hackman, who would win an Oscar for the role. Eastwood would also win the best director Oscar and the movie would take home best picture.
In recent years, it seems to have been making a comeback of sorts. Double and triple crosses aplenty as mercenaries Burt Lancaster and Gary Cooper team up in revolutionary Mexico to steal a cache of gold. Pretty much dismissed on its release, Vera Cruz can now be viewed as an exhilarating precursor to the spaghetti Westerns of the sixties. The great screen villain Dan Duryea almost steals the film as the sneering, sadistic Waco Johnnie Dean. Brando fell out with original director Stanley Kubrick, leaving the star to helm the only film he directed, a take on the Billy the Kid legend. Great fun all round. Social commentary in a Western setting, given added poignancy and resonance by the knowledge that Fonda had witnessed a lynching as a youth.
Classics Westerns like "Unforgiven" and "The Wild Bunch" are just a few on the list. These are the best Western movies of all time.
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10. “The Magnificent Seven” (1960)
Though Kennedy is nominally the star, Lang is more concerned with Dietrich, still packing a punch in her early 50s, in a role that, we see now, segues perfectly into her appearance as the enigmatic Tanna in Touch of Evil. And in a nod to Brecht, Lang eschews straightforward naturalism, foregrounding the music as a narrative device. Damon Wise. Wyatt Earp later worked as a Hollywood consultant and Robert Ford became famous for shooting an outlaw in the back. The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford is a brilliant movie about violence and celebrity, the two founding myths of America. It is directed by a poetic grace and precision by Andrew Dominick and charts the last days of the notorious train robber, who knows his days are numbered and that the noose is closing in.
Instead of arid Monument Valley, Utah, where John Ford created the mesa-centric view of the West, Mann took us to forests, mountains, and icy rivers. The Naked Spur also shook up Jimmy Stewart's psychological terrain as a brooding bounty hunter out to nab an outlaw so as to use the reward to buy back his foreclosed homestead. It hints at Stewart's darkness to come in Vertigo. Then, to his misfortune, Heflin hires three scoundrels George Hilton, an always-great Gilbert Roland, and Klaus Kinski, totally deranged to help transport the bullion back to civilization. As you can imagine, betrayal and backstabbing ensue.