Here is a theme I have not been familiar with… ever. Like, western and me know about each other, but we don’t hang out because let me be honest, I don’t really like this genre. There are a few movies I’ll mention here that are obviously western and that I’ve actually enjoyed. But as a general rule, I don’t seek out westerns in my spare time.
1. DJANGO UNCHAINED, 2012
This was not a hard pick, Django Unchained was one of those movies that defined 2012, and it definitely refreshed the western genre. I mean, Tarantino himself kept with the theme with his latest movie as well, and there is The Magnificent Seven, The Duel, Traded – all westerns, all from this year, none of which I’ve seen. But as far as westerns go, I think Django Unchained, thanks to Tarantino, was something really special.
2. THE REVENANT, 2015
When I set out to recommend for the western theme, The Revenant wasn’t the movie that popped into my head first. I don’t know why, it’s clearly a western, I totally get that, but it doesn’t feel like one. Does that make sense? But nonetheless, The Revenant is a western, and it’s a good movie. It hasn’t stayed with me as much as I would have expected, but it will forever remain as Leo’s first Oscar movie, and that has given this film a special place in my heart.
3. WILD WILD WEST, 1999
Cover your eyes, I’m about to recommend a bad movie, or at least that’s according to all those movie-rating-sites. The thing is, I don’t think Wild Wild West is that bad. Sure, it has its flaws and it’s far from something one would take seriously, but it’s been almost over 10 years since I last saw this movie, and all I can remember is the fun I had! It was a fun movie, right? No? Am I going crazy? How about the theme song?! Still fresh!
* WESTWORLD, 2016-
By now, I’ve almost caught up with Westworld and while me and western don’t go together, me and western-scifi, apparently do. I love it. And I don’t need to tell you to see it because I think the whole world is watching already and I’m the only one behind, avoiding spoilers like crazy.
THIS SERIES IS CREATED BY WANDERING THROUGH THE SHELVES0
Love all your picks. I think Django is quite good and love Christolph Waltz in his toothy buggy. The Revenent is a Western but I know what you mean that I can’t call it a True western because of the way a typical eastern is shot. I like Wild, Wild West and find it fun and can watch it over and over
You are probably the only one who shares some love for Wild Wild West, ha. It’s a shame though. I think that it isn’t worse than the newest Adam Sandler or Eddie Murphy movies. Those are much much worse, and compared to, I don’t know, Movie 43, Wild Wild West is brilliant! lol
Well I haven’t seen The Revenant and I’m not sure I’m going to. I like the actors but every person I know who has seen it say the same thing…it’s hard to take and more often than not hard to like. Maybe if I run across it on cable someday but otherwise I’m thinking no.
I’m not a Tarantino fan but went into Django Unchained hopeful since I’d just seen Inglorious Basterds and actually had enjoyed it. But I was disappointed in Django it just seemed a return to his previous form of unnecessary and ridiculous violence which I didn’t like in his other films.
I LOVED the original Wild, Wild West TV show and was horrified at what a hash they made of the film version. What a waste.
Haven’t had a chance to catch the new Westworld yet but I do want to check it out.
I love Western so it wasn’t so much coming up with picks as deciding which to use. I ended up with four I just couldn’t pick between so I’m including that fourth as a bonus.
Hannie Caulder (1971)-After she’s been raped, her home burned and her husband murdered before her eyes by three brothers Hannie Caulder (Raquel Welch) is hell bent on revenge. She tracks down bounty hunter Thomas Price (Robert Culp) and pressures him into training her to be a deadly shot then starts her hunt for justice. Tough, violent western with Welch hard as nails in the lead.
River of No Return (1954)-Vigorous tale set in the 19th century Pacific Northwest of widowed farmer Matt Calder (Robert Mitchum), recently released from jail for an honor killing, his young son Mark, the beautiful showgirl Kay (Marilyn Monroe) and her ruthless gambler fiancé Harry Weston (Rory Calhoun) who cross their path and a perilous raft journey down The River of No Return in a quest for gold and redemption. Big stars, standard story and beautiful location filming in the Canadian Rockies make this worth seeing. Marilyn sings several good era appropriate songs well including the title song though Mitchum sings it over the credits.
Side note: Mitchum & Monroe (when she was still Norma Jean Dougherty) knew each other well pre-fame, he worked with her first husband, which adds a bit of background dimension to their interaction in this film.
The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962)-When Senator Ransom Stoddard (Jimmy Stewart) arrives in the small western town of Shinbone for old friend Tom Doniphon’s (John Wayne) funeral a curious reporter pursues him and tries to find out why he would travel so far for a man no one knows anything about. Stoddard shares a story of arriving in Shinbone a greenhorn young lawyer years before and how he rose to his current position by being the infamous Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (Lee Marvin), a notoriously evil outlaw, and what part Doniphon played. A study of myth building and busting is director John Ford’s last great film.
Bonus: Silverado (1985)-Reformed thief Paden (Kevin Kline), left for dead in the desert is rescued by Emmett (Scott Glenn) who’s passing by on his way to meet his rakish quick draw brother Jake (Kevin Costner) so they can visit their sister in Silverado before heading out to California. Along the way they befriend Mal (Danny Glover) who’s heading the same way. Once there Paden finds the town is run by his old gang led by Cobb (Brian Dennehy) now the sheriff as well as the owner of the saloon operated by the wise Stella (Linda Hunt). There’s a range war brewing and the boys are pulled in leading to a showdown. Solid western directed well by Lawrence Kasdan.
Silverado…. that one rings a familiar bell in my mind right now but I don’t think I’ve really “seen it” seen it. And I’m so jealous of the fact that you were able to easily pick this week’s movies, I found this topic to be the hardest yet. My western knowledge is just so little, and that’s why I had to choose Wild Wild West.. though I can understand the dislike, I still think it’s funny. And memorable in its own way. Though it’s a shame it butchered the inspiration behind it with itself. That’s not good.
Thank you again for commenting!
I didn’t even think about The Revenant qualifying, I should’ve chosen that! Damn it lol.
I feel like that almost every week when I see other posts, and realise I left out something great. It annoys you for a while which is so silly. lol
Loving Westworld just gets better each week. Hahahah ah Wild Wild West!! Kevin Kline is a favourite but this film was indeed terrible. It was so random!
I like how Wild Wild West is bringing out all the emotions in the comment sections, random indeed!
The Revenant didn’t even cross my mind. And what a shame because that film was so good, I would have definitely picked it. Django Unchained is great, and Wild Wild West, well, I’m not even sure I’ve ever seen the whole movie. But I do remember some parts were fun.
It didn’t think it felt like a western but I guess in a way, it is. And I feel like Wild Wild West is like a really bad choice for this list compared to Django and Revenant, but I haven’t seen any other westerns I think!
YEEEY for Westworld! I swear to good I just stop breathing whenever Ed Harris takes out his gun and Western action begins
Yay indeed but I still have not seen it! My god, I need to do something about this.
Django was my top movie of 2012. Great pick. The Revenant is still sitting on my coffee table, waiting for me to watch it. The Wild Wild West…no… just no. Sorry I can’t go with you on that one.
No worries, I totally understand if you don’t want to discuss Wild Wild West… I just needed something to have on the list and that’s the only one I could think of.
Cool picks! I hadn’t considered The Revenant as a western but it totally fits.
Me neither, but if I think about it long enough, it does have a certain western element to it.
I’m way behind you on WestWorld. I still haven’t seen it. I’m generally behind on everything HBO. One of these months I’m going to subscribe to HBOGo for like just one month and just binge everything.
I’m now on the 6th episode, I think. And it’s getting so interesting! I’ll be caught up by Sunday, because I have the weekend off without any other obligations!