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If you had to choose


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If i had to choose it would be a tie between "The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly", and "Once Upon a Time in the West.

 

IMDb posters have rated "The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly" as #1 "Once Upon a Time in the West" #2 and "The Treasure of Sierra Madre" as #3 best Westerns.

 

IMDb posters have rated "The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly" as #4 all time film, so its up there and pretty highly regarded.

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All kidding aside, I think THE SEARCHERS is clearly the best; in my opinion, and in the eyes of a lot of fans. It has the depth, the scope and the complexity only the greatest movies offer. SHANE is beautiful and poetic. STAGECOACH, RED RIVER and others are wonderful. But John Ford's tale of duty, obsession and restlessness is the absolute top of the line.

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Over and over i read post after post praising these spaghetti westerns and over and over i ask myself what do they see i am missing? What I see iis acting that is over the top, musical scores designed to knock you physically out of your seat and sound effects that would have been canned in a Hopalong Cassidy film. I conceed their popularity, but i just never got it.

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  • 1 year later...

Sam Peckinpah's 1969 classic - "The Wild Bunch" is the best western ever made. It's not my personal favorite (that would be "The Magnificent Seven").

The direction, script, music, cinematography, acting and especially editing are without peer.

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{font:Times New Roman} {font}

 

{font:Times New Roman}In the vein of classic westerns, I would choose Rio Grande for its truly excellent cast, good story line, beautiful photography and the standing-upright-on-two-horses stunt. This is my favorite of all of Ford’s efforts. However despite its attractions, RG is still part of the fantasized genre that catered to clichés. So my vote goes to Hombre. Another excellent cast on par with RG, more realistic story and better acting. I would like to see someone attempt a purely pre-Columbian western someday but I doubt it will ever happen. It’s not necessary that Caucasians be included, good drama could be wrought just from the dynamics of Native American culture before the arrival of Europeans. Out of curiosity, I would like to know if the majority of western movie fans define the genre as “west of the Mississippi” or does it include films set during the colonial frontier period such as Allegheny Uprising or Last of the Mohicans. {font}

 

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> {quote:title=SWfan wrote:}{quote}{font:Times New Roman} {font}

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> {font:Times New Roman}In the vein of classic westerns, I would choose Rio Grande for its truly excellent cast, good story line, beautiful photography and the standing-upright-on-two-horses stunt. This is my favorite of all of Ford’s efforts. However despite its attractions, RG is still part of the fantasized genre that catered to clichés. So my vote goes to Hombre. Another excellent cast on par with RG, more realistic story and better acting. I would like to see someone attempt a purely pre-Columbian western someday but I doubt it will ever happen. It’s not necessary that Caucasians be included, good drama could be wrought just from the dynamics of Native American culture before the arrival of Europeans. Out of curiosity, I would like to know if the majority of western movie fans define the genre as “west of the Mississippi” or does it include films set during the colonial frontier period such as Allegheny Uprising or Last of the Mohicans. {font}

Well, RG, is a fine movie but I don't consider it Ford's best. But if you do, ok. The tension

between Yorke and Mrs. Yorke is what I like the most. She being a Southern woman and

Wayne of course is the Yankee who was obviously involved with Sheridan's looting and

burning in the Shenandoah Valley. She, rightfully so, resents it but manages to subdue it

for her love for Yorke.

 

She also comes along to watch and protect her son and Col. Yorke will have none of it. His

son is now a soldier and it's time to step up and be a man

 

.A good flick but not in the League of The Searchers.

 

Cliches, Hombre is a good Western but we get the usual staple of the big bad white man misusing the Indians. My favorite is Richard Boone and the ending is classic.

 

Westerns do not include the Colonial Period in my opinion. But, having some Cherokee Indian in my blood, I'd love to see a movie with the Cherokees during The War Between the States.

 

The Cherokee made a formal declaration and pulled out of the Union. It was a tumultuous time for them. It's a great read if you ever get the chance.

 

Jake in the Heartland

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> {quote:title=Gorch wrote:}{quote}Sam Peckinpah's 1969 classic - "The Wild Bunch" is the best western ever made. It's not my personal favorite (that would be "The Magnificent Seven").

> The direction, script, music, cinematography, acting and especially editing are without peer.

A much better flick, much better, a true classic, from Peckinpah direction, is

Ride the High Country.

 

It belongs on any top ten list.

 

Jake in the Heartland

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Pleased to meet you, Jake. I'm guessing that you're a Sand Pebbles fan - as am I.

Everyone has their own favorites and I don't really expect too many to agree with me about Wild Bunch. I also enjoy Ride the High Country, but don't care for Ron Starr's performance or the music score. I like the extended cut of Major Dundee with the new score and am looking forward to the new blue ray.

John Ford is one of a kind, but some of his attempts at humor are heavy handed. He was also weak with battle scenes.

 

Thanks for the welcome and I look forward to your opinions.

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> {quote:title=Gorch wrote:}{quote}Pleased to meet you, Jake. I'm guessing that you're a Sand Pebbles fan - as am I.

> Everyone has their own favorites and I don't really expect too many to agree with me about Wild Bunch. I also enjoy Ride the High Country, but don't care for Ron Starr's performance or the music score. I like the extended cut of Major Dundee with the new score and am looking forward to the new blue ray.

> John Ford is one of a kind, but some of his attempts at humor are heavy handed. He was also weak with battle scenes.

>

> Thanks for the welcome and I look forward to your opinions.

You know, I readily admit in today's world I'm in the minority regarding The Wild Bunch. Just

about every list that comes out today proclaiming the best Westerns of all time will have

TWB in the top ten.

 

I find it too realistic with unnecessary blood and gore to make its point. But many love it and

proclaim its greatness. Count me as not one of 'em.

 

Give me Westerns like Shane and The Searchers that weave time and place together with

strong endings that are fully satisfying.

 

If there is a weak part in The Searchers, it is the one in which Marty gets hooked up with

the Indian squaw. In my opinion, it's not needed at all but who am I to criticize Ford?

 

Always enjoy watching The Magnificent Seven and would put it on my top twenty list.

 

Jake in the Heartland

 

 

 

 

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The ending to The Searchers is one of the all time greatest, but I find it tragic that there is no place in the home for Ethan who is doomed to "ride away", as the ballad says.

Come to think of it, Shane ends with it's wounded hero riding away from the community he has saved and two of the surviving Magnificent also ride away, presumably to other adventures.

The last two remaining of the Wild Bunch at least ride away with the revolutionaries to fight the Federales.

I'm not shy about being critical of John Ford. The Searchers and She Wore a Yellow Ribbon are in my top 10 list, but he did decline as he aged. Granted he lost heart after Fred Kennedy's death, but The Horse Soldiers has no real ending and except for some of The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, he didn't distinguish himself thereafter. Of course, with all his previous brilliant work he could afford to film the occasional vacation, like Donovan's Reef.

 

Westerns are my favorite movie genre. I've seen almost all of them at least twice. Wish they were in demand more today, but that's why God made TCM, DVDs and BDs.

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My top ten:

 

1. Shane

 

2. The Searchers

 

3. The Hanging Tree

 

4. Red River

 

5. Man of the West

 

6. Rio Bravo

 

7. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance

 

8. Ride the High Country

 

9. High Noon

 

10. The Naked Spur

 

Jake in the Heartland

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Jake, that's a beautiful list. I understand why they are all there.

It just comes down to personal quirks and tastes, so my list is:

 

1. The Magnificent Seven

2. The Searchers

3. She Wore a Yellow Ribbon

4. The Wild Bunch

5. The Alamo (1960)

6. Tombstone

7. Duel at Diablo

8. The Professionals

9. Rio Bravo

10. Rio Conchos

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Haven't seen every western ever made, but I've seen most of the films mentioned. Here's a few more that I liked.

 

 

I'll take it for granted that 'The West' as viewed through the Hollywood filter is historically questionable. That's a seperate issue. I'm rating my selections merely on entertainment value.

 

 

*Will Penny* - Donald Pleasence and Bruce Dern, two great actors who always delivered the goods, especially when playing scumbags.

 

 

*El Dorado* - Particularly for Robert Mitchum. I have a soft spot for the screwed-up hero types, so much more interesting than the perfect types.

 

 

*The Outlaw Josey Wales* - Eastwoods character was a little more fully realized than the nameless ghost he played in spaghetti westerns.

 

 

Interesting to note that there are no spaghetti westerns listed.

 

 

*Jeremiah Johnson* - How many of us have ever wanted to say 'to hell with civilization' and head into the mountains? But be warned, it's a hard life and there's no toilet paper up there.

 

 

*Shane* - Of course.

 

 

*The Magnificent Seven* - A great (not perfect) western. And who can resist Elmer Bernstein's fabulous soundtrack music?

 

 

*True Grit (2010) DVD edition Special Features; From Bustles to Buckskin - Dressing for the 1880s and Re-Creating Fort Smith*. - A strange choice? Not really. These two featurettes have opened my eyes and destroyed my innocence.

 

 

Best wishes

Metairie Road

 

 

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Hi Gorch,

 

Great picks but for a few of 'em for me.

 

The Professionals was a precursor for TWB. Never liked it

but so what? You do.

 

Tombstone is a great Western.

 

Love Doc Holiday. I'm a Southern Boy from Georgia.

 

Jake in the Heartland

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Hello Jake,

 

It seems I'm a sucker for a western that has a group on a mission, or in the case of The Alamo, in a mission.

Day of the Outlaw is indeed an under-rated film. I watched it a few months ago and look forward to your thoughts on it. I like it so much I even have a one sheet poster from it.

Read an interview with Kurt Russell who acknowledges that he really directed most of the film and that he would like to restore all the missing scenes. He has all the film elements in his garage!

 

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> {quote:title=Gorch wrote:}{quote}Hello Jake,

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> It seems I'm a sucker for a western that has a group on a mission, or in the case of The Alamo, in a mission.

> Day of the Outlaw is indeed an under-rated film. I watched it a few months ago and look forward to your thoughts on it. I like it so much I even have a one sheet poster from it.

> Read an interview with Kurt Russell who acknowledges that he really directed most of the film and that he would like to restore all the missing scenes. He has all the film elements in his garage!

 

 

 

 

 

It's been a couple of years since I watched Day of the Outlaw but I did find it to be

an excellent Western.

 

Robert Ryan was an excellent actor, very under-rated, and I remember him in this

movie as the rancher coming to town to kill a farmer who has put up barbed wire

on his farm causing the usual problems for ranchers.

 

Sound familiar?

 

Burl Ives then makes his entrance and throws a monkey wrench into the whole array

of plans.

 

From there we get some bleak realism and the usual theme of good versus evil with

circumstances dictating how men act in those settings.

 

Ryan and Ives are the two who question themselves about who and what they are as

men and the ending in the snow brings us to greed, murder and redemption.

 

I liked it but will not hold myself out as an expert on the director Andre De Toth and

his intentions for this film.

 

Feel free to pitch in.

 

chevauchée_bannis_slider_4.jpg

 

Jake in the Heartland

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