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Thursday, 01 November 2007 |  Written by Darren Gross  | 
Cowboys, The Weathered cattleman Wil Andersen (John Wayne) finds himself in a bit of a fix. He’s about to set off on the four hundred mile cattle drive to Belle Fourche with 1500 head of cattle ready for market when gold fever strikes a nearby town. Andersen loses his cowboys to the gold strike; with the town virtually abandoned because of the gold rush, he has no cattle drovers. Andersen is initially amused when his friend, Anse (Slim Pickens) suggests that he use the local schoolboys, but when they show up at his ranch one morning eager to try out, he gives them a shot. On the first day of summer, they all join in on the cattle drive, accompanied by cook Jedediah Nightlinger (Roscoe Lee Browne). The young lads prove their mettle on the drive and the trials of the trail turn the journey into a rite of passage for them under ...
Editor's rating: 
Wednesday, 01 August 2007 |  Written by Bill Warren  | 
Rio Bravo In 1959, Howard Hawks hadn’t made a movie in four years; his last film, “Land of the Pharaohs,” was a critical misfire and died at the boxoffice. He went to Europe to nurse his wounds. At the same time, John Wayne had a run of mostly mediocre movies—“Blood Alley,” “The Conqueror,” “Legend of the Lost” (though “The Searchers” was in there, too)—and was looking for something to revive his stardom. Hawks and Wayne had worked well on “Red River”—Hawks’ first Western—so in a sense, Hawks ran for cover, bringing Wayne with him. Jules Furthman wrote (or cowrote) the scripts for some of Hawks’ best movies—“Come and Get It” (1936), “Only Angels Have Wings” (1939), “To Have and Have Not” (1944) and “The Big Sleep (1946). Leigh Brackett had also worked on “The Big Sleep,” and later worked for Hawks on “Hatari,” (1962), “Man’s Favorite Sport?” (1964), “El Dorado” (1966) and “Rio Lobo” (1970). ...
Editor's rating: 
Sunday, 01 October 2006 |  Written by Mel Odom  | 
Searchers, The Released in 1956, shot in Technicolor with legendary director John Ford at the helm and starring box-office draws John Wayne and Jeffrey Hunter, “The Searchers” is a great sprawling epic of the old West and the hard men who lived there. Filmed in Monument Valley and the surrounding red-rock area, the scenery is striking and severe, providing lots of rocky desert landscape to challenge the characters and the film crew. Ford also shot parts of the film during the winter, showing the hardships Ethan and Martin had to face while trying to track down little Debbie Edwards. HD DVD Video Presentation: I’d had no idea how good the transfer process was going to be on this film until I put the disc into the machine and sat back to watch the movie. From the opening shots to establish the land and the lone rider approaching the low-slung adobe house, I was totally engrossed ...
Editor's rating: 
Thursday, 01 June 2006 |  Written by Darren Gross  | 
Unforgiven In 1880, a couple of years after the death of his wife, notorious intemperate murderer William Munny (Eastwood) is approached by a young gunman (Wolvett) to join him in claiming a thousand dollar bounty on two cowboys who have disfigured a prostitute. Although initially reluctant, Munny relents and brings along his old partner, Ned (Freeman). While Munny used to be an evil man, marriage to his wife reformed him, and it’s been over ten years since he’s killed another human being. As they head toward the town of Big Whiskey, Munny finds himself haunted by visions of his dark deeds and uneasy about the job ahead. Meanwhile in Big Whiskey, arrogant Sheriff Little Bill (Hackman) takes brutal steps to assure that potential assassins steer far away, but a dark inevitable confrontation looms large. Eastwood’s reflective and powerful western is a well-crafted tale of violence and its repercussions. “Unforgiven” is nearly existential, with great emphasis ...
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