Dead for a Dollar (Universal, 2022)

  Slightly Boetticheresque   You can always rely on Walter Hill. He once said that all the films he made were Westerns, really. When you watch one of his gangster movies such as Last Man Standing you get that. A Western by any other name, that picture really brought the Yojimbo plot full circle: it […]

Rough Riders (TNT, 1997)

  Pretty well done   As Jeff Shaara, author of the enjoyable The Old Lion: A Novel of Theodore Roosevelt, says in a conversation with Jared Frederick on Reel History, there are the inevitable limitations of a TV movie and there are certainly historical inaccuracies in Rough Riders but all in all “they did a […]

Fury at Gunsight Pass (Columbia, 1956)

  A tidy little oater with a slightly unusual plot   Like our last review, Montana Territory, this picture was a mid-budget 1950s Columbia second feature, directed this time by another experienced hand, Fred F Sears. It was a 68-minute black & white job.     We’ve had Fury at Furnace Creek and Fury at […]

Montana Territory (Columbia, 1952)

  Plummer and the vigilantes   Montana Territory was a one-hour Columbia Western shot up at the Iverson Ranch with a modest budget but was in color, had a good supporting cast and rattled along quite nicely.     It was directed by highly experienced Ray Nazarro (73 feature Westerns!) and written by equally qualified […]

That Dirty Black Bag (Bron/Palomar, 2022)

  More spaghetti?   Not for me, thanks. I’ve had enough.   There’s a generation of people who were teenagers or young adults in the mid-to-late 1960s, especially in Europe, for whom the spaghetti western is the Western.   Regular readers of this blog, both of them, will know that Jeff is of a slightly […]

The Red Pony (Republic, 1949)

  We’ll review it anyway   Jeff Arnold’s West is not really the place to review The Red Pony at all because a Western it ain’t, but still, it does have Robert Mitchum in a cowboy hat, it’s set on a ranch in California in some unspecified ‘olden times’, horses figure large, obviously, and well, […]

You Know My Name (TNT TV, 1999)

  Sam is Bill   Continuing our Sam Elliott thread for a moment, after our post on 1883, in 1999 TNT screened a picture Elliott produced and starred in about the Oklahoma lawman Bill Tilghman, You Know My Name.     As we said in our article on Tilghman (click the link for that), William […]

Meek’s Cutoff (Evanstar/Oscilloscope, 2010)

  Westward the women   Continuing our current thread of wagon-train Westerns, today we’ll look at a recent contribution to the sub-genre, the 2010 feature Meek’s Cutoff.     Though it is and it isn’t a Western. It’s a Western in the sense that it’s a classic theme – frontier settlers facing hardships on the […]

Passage West (Paramount, 1951)

  A decent enough wagon-train Western   Last time, reviewing 1883, I said that wagon-train Westerns were among the most common type, and all through the history of American cinema there have been examples. 1951 was the year of MGM’s very fine Westward the Women, and Paramount’s counter-offering, Passage West, had little of the quality […]

1883 (CBS/MTV, 2021)

  We’ve kinda seen it all before   Americans do so love the ‘family saga’. Long tales of the adventures of different generations of a dynasty are immensely popular, in book form and on the screen. Such a one is the Yellowstone franchise, the brainchild of ‘creator’-producer-director-writer Taylor Sheridan, available on Paramount +.   Yellowstone […]