Western Recommendations

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angloconvoy
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Western Recommendations

Post by angloconvoy » Sat Jan 21, 2012 12:18 pm

So I'm on a bit of a Western kick at the moment, having been playing Red Dead Redemption and watching Hell On Wheels, which I found completely by accident and enjoyed thoroughly. Anyone else seen it?

Anyhow, what Westerns do you guys rate as must watch? Unforgiven is a favourite of mine, as is Fistful of Dollars (and it's remake of a remake Last Man Standing).

Side rant. Played RDR online multiplayer for the first time today and my god did it remind me of why I hardly ever play online. At two various points I joined up with posses, only to have one of my idiot team members start shooting me in the back of the head. So I buggered off to try and do a hideout, at which point a level 50 player (highest in the game) decides to start hunting me down. Because going after a level one plyer must be such a fun challenge. At one point I got up to do something and just left the controller on the floor. Out of interest at just how socially malfunctional the other player was, I kept half an eye on the TV and yep, he just kept on killing me, over and over. A level one player standing stock still. I felt a bit sorry for him (or her, I have no idea) after a while because if that's what passes for entertainment to that person then they must have nothing going on. Anyway, once I was finished with what I was doing I decided to fight back a little, got myself up to level 2 and quit out. I'll play again when I have some actual friends online, but I think I'll avoid playing with strangers from now on.
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Cliffjumper
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Post by Cliffjumper » Sat Jan 21, 2012 1:01 pm

Once Upon a Time in the West is simply the greatest film ever made. So save it a bit, because everything else pales by comparison.

Eastwood barely made a bad Western (I fence sit on Joe Kidd and Hang 'Em High, which aren't exactly bad but are just weak by comparison to the rest). Recommended watching order is Dollars trilogy (maybe in reverse order if you're feeling fancy), then High Plains Drifter & Pale Rider very close together (same basic plot, radically different style). Then deconstruct with Outlaw Josey Wales, Two Mules for Sister Sara and Unforgiven.

The Wild Bunch lives up to the hype, genuine five-star solid gold classic. Other Peckinpah westerns are a little more variable; Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid is great if you really, really like Western films. Ride the High Country is good if you're in the right mood.

Spaghettis are a mixed bunch. Recommendations would be A Bullet for the General (Volonte is class), the original Django (the best gimmick Western; Django Kill! is the best of the sequels/knock-offs; most of them revolve around one crazy weapon or setpiece), Vengeance, Adios Sabata

Not a fan of Wayne/Ford, or indeed much pre-Dollars, though High Noon is obviously smashing, ditto the original Magnificent Seven (the Great Escape of cowboy films).

Dead Man's good value for Depp, random plotting and bizarre cameos. El Topo's best avoided unless walking around with a rolled-up copy of the Guardian stuck up your bum is your kind of thing.

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zigzagger
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Post by zigzagger » Sat Jan 21, 2012 1:16 pm

Not much of an expert on the subject myself, but I'd also recommend Once Upon a Time in the West. My brother turned me on to it. Appreciated it for all its nifty little subtleties - the soundtrack (or lack of in many instances), the camera angling, the pacing, and so forth - that help set the atmosphere.

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Post by inflatable dalek » Sat Jan 21, 2012 2:09 pm

That reminds me, I need to actually finish my Dollars trilogy boxset at some point...
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Post by angloconvoy » Sat Jan 21, 2012 2:46 pm

Ah yeah, I've seen the dollars trilogy, and I've watched the Outlaw Josey Wales a few times when I was younger, though I don't think I really appreciated it at the time.

Hopefully I'll be able to find these in Japan. I'm just now watching Young Guns. Not one of the classics, granted, but it's great fun.
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Post by Warcry » Sun Jan 22, 2012 6:46 am

Not a huge Western fan myself, but I've seen a couple recently that I'd give the thumbs' up to.

If you're interested in modern Westerns and not just classic ones, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford is definitely worth a watch. Not as much action as the old-school shoot-'em-ups, but it's a very good movie that puts a very different (and probably more historically accurate) spin on the story of one of the Wild West's most famous figures.

Tombstone is worth watching strictly for Val Kilmer. Even if you don't enjoy a single other thing about the film, Doc Holliday is very memorable for all the right reasons. I thought it was a pretty good film myself, although Kurt Russell is guilty of overacting in some places.

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Post by Cliffjumper » Sun Jan 22, 2012 1:44 pm

Warcry wrote:Kurt Russell is guilty of overacting in some places.
Like whenever he's in front of a camera. Woop woop!

I forgot to mention A Fistful of Travellers Cheques.


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Post by Heinrad » Sun Jan 22, 2012 9:18 pm

To throw in a few more titles.....

The Searchers is a great film, as is The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence and The Shootist. Yeah, they're all Wayne films, but they're pretty good.

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, which I'm surprised nobody's mentioned yet. And if you're in a more comedic mood, there's always Support your Local Sheriff and Support your Local Gunfighter.

The only version of RDR I've got is the standalone "Undead Nightmare" that they put out on disc, and I'm not going to even try it until I beat Arkham City. I tend to get sidetracked easily and then it takes me forever to get back to what I was playing.
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angloconvoy
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Post by angloconvoy » Mon Jan 23, 2012 9:21 am

Thanks for the recommendations guys, a lot I've seen, a few I haven't. Not a big fan of Wayne myself, to be honest, so I think I'll skip those (I'd watch them if they came on TV, but the odds of that in Japan are slim at best).

Undead Nightmare is fun, but I'd really recommend playing the main RDR first. Doubt it'll have much impact on you otherwise.
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Post by inflatable dalek » Mon Jan 23, 2012 9:25 am

Wayne films are more fun if you pretend it's Optimus Prime.
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END OF AN ERA IN MY LOOK AT AOE 5!
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Post by angloconvoy » Mon Jan 23, 2012 9:51 am

Funny you should say that, so many great characters have been based on Wayne over the years, and I found almost all of them more accessable and likeable than Wayne himself.
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Post by Cliffjumper » Mon Jan 23, 2012 1:03 pm

Wayne's the male Marilyn Monroe - fantastic icon (which is why he works in Preacher), but it's not so much fun to sit down and watch him do his day-job. Apart from the Green Berets, because it's ****ing hilarious.

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Post by Rurudyne » Tue Jan 24, 2012 3:56 am

Goin' South is a rather unusual western romance that I'd recommend. It stars Jack Nicholson and Mary Steenburgen as the "couple" and has no less than John Belushi in the cast. Christopher Lloyd too.

And while is was never hard core —anything— the Apple Dumpling Gang has always been fun when thrown into the mix.
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