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Western remakes


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I absolutely loved the Coen brothers' remake of *True Grit*. Although I did not dislike the original and thought John Wayne was excellent in the role of Rooster Cogburn, I much preferred the way the new version stayed true to the book. That Mattie lost her arm, never saw Rooster again, grew into an old maid ... it led to a more realistic feeling of the time and the genre. At least it did for me.

That said, what Western would you like to see REMADE? Is there one that screams out to you for a remake? If so, play along and do a little casting. Perhaps identify a leading man, leading lady and a prominent supporting role. Who today would replace the original star?

For example, how about *The Gunfigher* with Tom Hanks in the Gregory Peck role?

Or maybe *The Naked Spur* with Josh Brolin in the James Stewart role and Natalie Portman in for Janet Leigh?

Can you imagine the way these two stories could be retold, reshaped? Who cares to play along?

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I. too, prefer the newer *True Grit* to the older one as I think all the parts made up the whole rather than being just a John Wayne vehicle. I've spent time in the Fort Smith area and found this version had more of a real feel of the area.

 

As for Tom Hanks as Jimmy Ringo, I bought him as a hit man in *The Road to Perdition* but I can't see him in this. Perhaps I'm way too attached to Gregory Peck in the role. Josh Brolin could probably do it justice or even Jeff Bridges although I doubt he wants to become known for replaying other stars' roles. Leave *The Naked Spur* alone; I doubt anybody could improve on it. I guess I feel the same way about *The Gunfighter.*

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*Man of The West* though good, was a bit of a casting mess, Gary Cooper was older than his uncle Lee J Cobb its a pitty because I really like Julie London in it though. A remake of this with better casting might work a bit better and be a bit more beliveable. The only trrouble is we don't have a stock company of Western actors any longer. It would be tough to make any Western believable, True Grit got lucky.

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*Man of the West.* This is a movie that, looking back, gets pretty good reviews, too. I agree that it makes for great storytelling ... Not only did it have Cobb, but there were excellent performances by John Denher and Jack Lord, too ... this would be a fun movie to cast, as well as rework ... Again, it has the elements of a changing West and a main character caught in the middle.

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I don't think the remakes have to be *The Gunfighter* and *The Naked Spur*. And, like you, I don't know if anyone could replace a Peck or a Stewart.

I'm just sort of tossing it out there. What I am looking for are these Westerns that have a deeper element than just gun play. With censorship and restrictions, movies of the 50s were limited in what they could show, what they could do. There were so many good themes unexplored in both movies, because of censorship. ...

I think one of the best Western films recently was the AMC production of *Broken Trail*, which explored prostitution, slavery, etc. ...

I'm just sayin' there are a great many candidates, like *True Grit*, for possible remake. What would be high on your list?

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What about a remake of "Broken Arrow", the James Stewart/Jeff Chandler Western, a true story about the Pony Express agent who rode alone into the Chiricahua Apaches camp and because of his bravery became friends with their chief Cochise and helped bring an end to the Indian wars { for a while }. The film was a beautiful and well made piece with fine direction by Delmer Daves. This film and book also produced a well made TV series. A look at the Indian way of life in the 1870's.....?

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Okay if they tell the truth. According to an article I read years ago, Tom Jeffords was a lifelong bachelor who did not marry an Apache woman or anyone else. Supposedly, Fox concocted Sonsearay to provide what they thought was needed romance then killed her off because they feared negative feedback over an interracial marriage. In an era where a Las Vegas hotel would drain and scrub down a pool after Dorothy Dandridge swam in it, that might be true. Like Sgt. Friday all we want are the facts as they should be able to stand on their own.

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Yes, the love story in the film was pure fiction.But "Broken Arrow" was noted as showing the American Indians in a positive light, one of the few to do that in a while.But it did stay close to what really happened. Jeffords riding into the Apache camp alone to get Cochise to let the mail through and becoming friends with the leader. Pres Grant sending General Howard to get the Indians to sign a treaty. Cochise asking that the Apaches be permitted to remain in the Chiricahua Mountains and that Jeffords be made Indian agent. Both request were honored.

Cochise died a year after the treaty was signed of natural causes. The white settlers wanted to be permitted to dig for silver and copper that were on the Apaches lands. They wrote many letters to Washington and were finally permitted. The government removed the Apache to the San Carlos Reservation in Southeast Az. known as "Hells 40 Acres". Many Indians left the reservation and the Indian Wars started up again.

Jeffords was removed as the agent and held many jobs including deputy sheriff in Tombstone. He died in 1914.....

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Thank you, fred. If it turned out like the reworking of *True Grit* did, I would give it a look. If not, leave it alone. It's hard picturing anybody other than Stewart and Chandler in the roles, espically when Cochise kills the brave who tried to kill Jeffords. Because of my feet I now only wear taupe mosisins with a black and coral sun pattern and fringe at the toes. Tthey always make me think of the movie.

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A factual remake of *Broken Arrow* would, in my opinion, be an excellent pick ... The Jeffords character probably is one of the most overlooked in Western films. I think the fact that Stewart, a film great, played him in a very successful Western is one reason. But how many times has the Wyatt Earp character been played by DOZENS of leading men, from Lancaster and Scott to Russell and Costner. Oh, and James Garner, too.

I think this would be great material for a remake.

How about a few more of you Western fans chiming in? I'd be curious to know what else would make "remake" material...

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{font:Verdana, Arial, sans-serif}*We have a similar thread on Imdb*

 

Westerns that had a good idea but sort of fell flat or didn't deliver

 

 

*Hang 'em High* sort of fell FLAT at the end. You could probably say ditto for *The Outlaw Josey Wales*

*Paint Your Wagon* had a good premise, too bad it was a musical.

*Yellow Sky* sort of fizzled near the end.

*Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid* when is somebody going to make a more serious film about the "The Wild Bunch/Hole In The Wall" gang, or a mini series for that matter, there's no way you could get all the various side stories into a standard length film.

*Valdez is Comming*

{font}{font:Verdana, Arial, sans-serif}*The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean*

{font}{font:Verdana, Arial, sans-serif}*The Skin Game* dopey ending to what could have been a classic too bad.

 

Though I think Altman's *McCabe & Mrs Miller* is a top ten Western Classic, a miniseries based on the novel would be nice too ;-)

{font}

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I liked *Valdez Is Coming* and would not mind a remake ... As for movies that fall flat at the end, I think there are dozens and dozens of films of all genres that do this. Hollywood just can't seem to figure out how to END a film ...

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  • 1 month later...

> {quote:title=CitySlicker wrote:}{quote}I liked *Valdez Is Coming* and would not mind a remake ... As for movies that fall flat at the end, I think there are dozens and dozens of films of all genres that do this. Hollywood just can't seem to figure out how to END a film ...

I hated the ending to NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well as with any so called remake is one remaking the movie or is one making a movie based on the characters (i.e. the life of an actual person) or the original source material (book play)?

 

If the latter there is a lot one can 'milk' that will ensure the so called remake is different than the original. Take all the Earp movies that have been made. The one Tombstone is one of the best in my view because it is the one that is most realistic (e.g. the gun fight at the OK Coral only last less than a minute).

 

Yea, one can say that the Lancaster Douglas version had the best actors but the movie wasn't very realistic with regards to the telling of history. Often there is little reason to remake a movie (other than trying to make money), but there can be many artistic reasons to make a movie based on historical character that had interesting lives.

 

 

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