Recommend a Good Western

Yay! I’ve had a Gwangi shot as my desktop background for about 5 years.

Here’s the definitive list of top 10 must see westerns:

  • Rio Bravo
  • Searchers
  • The Good, the Bad, the Ugly
  • Wild Bunch
  • Assassination of Jesse James…
  • The original 3:10 to Yuma
  • Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
  • Once Upon a Time in the West
  • Last of the Mohicans
  • McCabe and Mrs. Miller

not sure if it was mentioned, but the Shootist was really good, I think it was John Wayne’s last western…

So your take would be to go with Laredo?
Will do some searching. Otherwise I might just end up rewatching Lonesome Dove. Apparently the Blu Ray version is pretty decent…

Yeah, the way I recall it, Laredo is pretty good. It doesn’t have the “epicness” of Lonesome Dove, it’s more of a step in a Deadwood direction if you will. A lot of death and I thought Randy Quaid as John Wesley Hardin was awesome.

I never saw the film of Streets of Laredo but I read the book and really enjoyed it. It kind of covers some of the same thematic territory of Lonesome Dove but I liked that set of characters well enough not to mind too much.

I’m not a big Western guy, and I have a criminal lack of knowledge of Leone and Peckinpah, but of the films I’ve seen in the genre I recommend:

The Ox Bow Incident
The Searchers
The Shootist
The Magnificent Seven
High Noon
The Quick and the Dead (for shits & giggles)

It’s a TV mini-series, just like Lonesome Dove was. If you’ve only watched the movie version of Lonesome Dove I really recommend getting the series.

A quick heads up, apparently Comanche Moon was released as 3-part mini series in 2008. With uh… Karl Urban as Call and Steve Zahn as Gus? Anyway, it’s got Wes Studi as Buffalo Hump and yes folks, it’s got Val Kilmer in it. Don’t know if they made it as gruesome as it potentially could be or even if it’s any good at all but I’ll look around for it.

WTF, no one’s mentioned The Big Country so far? Gregory Peck, Charlton Heston, Jean Simmons, Burl Ives, Chuck Connors. Awesome stuff, and the musical theme is top-notch.

The Big Country (1958)

Watched Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid yesterday. It wouldn’t call it great but it was definitely an enjoyable experience. There are lots of funny moments. I liked how a big chunk of the film is just about the two characters, who think they’re hot stuff, running for their lives. “Who are these people?”

You could watch the asian westerns if you haven’t seen them. Sukiyaki Western Django and The Good, The Bad and The Weird.

I just rewatched Silverado and frankly I’m amazed people are not commonly running in the streets singing its praises. The dialogue just shines and scene to scene the movie is as close to perfect I’ve ever seen a film be.

The plot develops in a very nice and organic way while leading to a traditional ultimate confrontation. It’s a very rich, classic Western story, like a miniseries condensed down to the essential beats without feeling rushed.

Brian Dennehy, Linda Hunt and Kevin Kline are wonderful and the whole cast gives great performances. The photography is beautiful and the vistas breathtaking. I don’t know of a movie that is out-and-out more entertaining than Silverado.

Paden: “Here’s to the good stuff.”
Stella: “Long may it last.”

I’ve had that one on my backlog for a while and finally got around to checking it out. I totally second this recommendation. Obviously, it heavily references Leone movies, but also adds some elements that would be typical for Asian action movies. Loved the action scenes, especially the Ghost Market shoot-out. Last but not least: The soundtrack is truly superb.

Robert Vaughn, the last of the Magnificent Seven (OG version) and The Man From UNCLE passed away today, age 83.

There’s a whole bunch of great John Ford movies, but they mostly have John Wayne.

Try either The Naked Spur or Winchester 73 - both from the 50s, both starring Jimmy Stewart and directed by Anthony Mann. Mann started a trend of Westerns that fit into the Western archetype but had a slightly darker tinge to them (Mann came out of film noir.)

And there’s Fred Zinnemann’s High Noon with Gary Cooper. Though it’s the sort of thing that’s been referenced and imitated and parodied so much that it’s hard to come at it fresh.

We just watched Open Range (2003) again last night for the first time in years, and I’d forgotten how good it is. In particular, an extended and realistic (as far as Hollywood goes) series of chaotic gunfights toward the end that I could not take my eyes away from. Just awesome stuff.

Warlock is one of my favorite oaters. Henry Fonda, Anthony Quinn, Richard Widmark and probably DeForrest Kelley’s best performance in a supporting role. I just watched it again recently, and it’s as dark and morally complex as ever (along with some fairly open homoerotica…Quinn doesn’t even appear to be trying to hide it).

I’ve been on a Taylor Sheridan fix as of late, I blame Yellowstone, 1883, and Mayor of Kingstown.

Decided to start watching some of his movies. I enjoyed this:

I recently saw Hell or High Water as well. It was okay. Pretty forgettable though. Thank you for the reminder though. One of the big benefits of seeing the movie is that now I get to listen to the Qt3 movie podcast about the movie, but I haven’t found the time to do so yet.

Odd that the IMDB preview makes no mention of the biggest face on the poster? Does Mr Bridges only show up for a cameo then?

More than a cameo but he’s in a supporting role. It’s ok. Like Rockman said it was forgettable. I don’t think I’ve thought of it once after I watched it.

A good western is the recent season of The English. I guess this topic is more about movies, though.