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The [Movies] Thread: Pre-Summer Blockbuster Blockbuster Season

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  • AtomikaAtomika Torchlight Resistance HQ Propaganda DivisionRegistered User regular
    It seems like, traditionally, Westerns glorify characters who are simply bad people, or at the very least are involved in conflicts presented far more solipsistically than a more realistic portrayal would allow. Antagonists in Westerns are often the blackest of blackhearted mustache-twirlers, so it makes our murdering/misogynist/misanthropic protagonist seem like the morally-appropriate counter, and conflicts are almost always resolved with gratuitous displays of violence.

    In short, many Westerns seem like right-wing power fantasies, with characters often motivated by patriarchal cliches, and that makes me really, really uncomfortable to lionize a large volume of those works.


    It's the subversive westerns I tend to go for, especially ones like The Proposition or Little Big Man, where the actual ramifications and implications of life in those dynamics is shown.

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  • RT800RT800 Registered User regular
    I don't watch a lot of westerns.

    The only ones I can remember seeing are The Magnificent Seven, Tombstone, and True Grit.

    So uh...

    1. Tombstone
    2. The Magnificent Seven
    3. True Grit

    Andy Joe
  • AstaerethAstaereth In the belly of the beastRegistered User regular
    Atomika wrote: »
    It seems like, traditionally, Westerns glorify characters who are simply bad people, or at the very least are involved in conflicts presented far more solipsistically than a more realistic portrayal would allow. Antagonists in Westerns are often the blackest of blackhearted mustache-twirlers, so it makes our murdering/misogynist/misanthropic protagonist seem like the morally-appropriate counter, and conflicts are almost always resolved with gratuitous displays of violence.

    In short, many Westerns seem like right-wing power fantasies, with characters often motivated by patriarchal cliches, and that makes me really, really uncomfortable to lionize a large volume of those works.


    It's the subversive westerns I tend to go for, especially ones like The Proposition or Little Big Man, where the actual ramifications and implications of life in those dynamics is shown.

    I have a completely untested theory that you can tell a progressive Western from a regressive one by whether any of the horses have names.

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  • TheBenjomonsterTheBenjomonster Registered User regular
    We calling The Revenant a western? Cause if so it's easily one of my favorite westerns. No Country still takes the cake though, that is a top-10 all time/all genre for me.

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  • TexiKenTexiKen Very cool. Verycool. Verrikool. Verikul.Registered User regular
    westerns are awesome good guys being good bad guys being bad the only thing progressive should be the amount of bullets passing through the baddies, and that you lean forward when you draw.

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  • ZampanovZampanov You May Not Go Home Until Tonight Has Been MagicalRegistered User regular
    Atomika wrote: »
    It seems like, traditionally, Westerns glorify characters who are simply bad people, or at the very least are involved in conflicts presented far more solipsistically than a more realistic portrayal would allow. Antagonists in Westerns are often the blackest of blackhearted mustache-twirlers, so it makes our murdering/misogynist/misanthropic protagonist seem like the morally-appropriate counter, and conflicts are almost always resolved with gratuitous displays of violence.

    In short, many Westerns seem like right-wing power fantasies, with characters often motivated by patriarchal cliches, and that makes me really, really uncomfortable to lionize a large volume of those works.


    It's the subversive westerns I tend to go for, especially ones like The Proposition or Little Big Man, where the actual ramifications and implications of life in those dynamics is shown.

    Plenty of the heroes are designed as anti heroes who you are not supposed to think are 'good guys' really. Just that they're the best alternative to the villains that can be found.

    Glorifications seem to generally lean toward bravery in the face of stacked odds and standing up for the helpless.

    There's definitely the power fantasy aspect, but to me it always seemed like the fantasy of evening the odds. That the little guy, the lone hero can stand up to the hordes of self obsessed assholes and keep them from destroying everyone who's just trying to live a peaceful life.

    You can see why non misogynistic/misanthropic viewers might still really identify with stories like that even today.

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  • PsychoLarry1PsychoLarry1 Registered User regular
    Once Upon a Time in the West
    Unforgiven
    Hateful 8
    McCabe and Mrs. Miller
    The Proposition


    I'd also like to give an honorary spot to Justified, even if this is the movies thread and Kentucky is on the wrong side of the Mississippi.

  • GhotiGhoti Registered User regular
    Wow, surprisingly little love for Three Amigos...

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  • DoodmannDoodmann Registered User regular
    edited December 2016
    Once Upon a Time in the West
    Unforgiven
    Tombstone
    The Hateful Eight
    The Quick and The Dead

    *edit I totally forgot about The Proposition*

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  • Hahnsoo1Hahnsoo1 Make Ready. We Hunt.Registered User regular
    The best Western is Blazing Saddles.

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  • DanHibikiDanHibiki Registered User regular
    Ghoti wrote: »
    Wow, surprisingly little love for Three Amigos...

    Also Rango

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  • dispatch.odispatch.o Registered User regular
    Zampanov wrote: »
    Atomika wrote: »
    It seems like, traditionally, Westerns glorify characters who are simply bad people, or at the very least are involved in conflicts presented far more solipsistically than a more realistic portrayal would allow. Antagonists in Westerns are often the blackest of blackhearted mustache-twirlers, so it makes our murdering/misogynist/misanthropic protagonist seem like the morally-appropriate counter, and conflicts are almost always resolved with gratuitous displays of violence.

    In short, many Westerns seem like right-wing power fantasies, with characters often motivated by patriarchal cliches, and that makes me really, really uncomfortable to lionize a large volume of those works.


    It's the subversive westerns I tend to go for, especially ones like The Proposition or Little Big Man, where the actual ramifications and implications of life in those dynamics is shown.

    Plenty of the heroes are designed as anti heroes who you are not supposed to think are 'good guys' really. Just that they're the best alternative to the villains that can be found.

    Glorifications seem to generally lean toward bravery in the face of stacked odds and standing up for the helpless.

    There's definitely the power fantasy aspect, but to me it always seemed like the fantasy of evening the odds. That the little guy, the lone hero can stand up to the hordes of self obsessed assholes and keep them from destroying everyone who's just trying to live a peaceful life.

    You can see why non misogynistic/misanthropic viewers might still really identify with stories like that even today.

    Many of the anti-heroes are well aware by the end of the film genre they may have fought for what was right, but they're still terrible people. They die in redemption or move on and never enjoy the resolution of conflict.

  • GhotiGhoti Registered User regular
    Oh, I almost forgot about El Diablo...

  • BlackDragon480BlackDragon480 Bluster Kerfuffle Master of Windy ImportRegistered User regular
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Atomika wrote: »
    It seems like, traditionally, Westerns glorify characters who are simply bad people, or at the very least are involved in conflicts presented far more solipsistically than a more realistic portrayal would allow. Antagonists in Westerns are often the blackest of blackhearted mustache-twirlers, so it makes our murdering/misogynist/misanthropic protagonist seem like the morally-appropriate counter, and conflicts are almost always resolved with gratuitous displays of violence.

    In short, many Westerns seem like right-wing power fantasies, with characters often motivated by patriarchal cliches, and that makes me really, really uncomfortable to lionize a large volume of those works.


    It's the subversive westerns I tend to go for, especially ones like The Proposition or Little Big Man, where the actual ramifications and implications of life in those dynamics is shown.

    I have a completely untested theory that you can tell a progressive Western from a regressive one by whether any of the horses have names.

    What does that say about:

    A Man Called Horse

    ?

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  • wanderingwandering Registered User regular
    Astaereth wrote: »
    TURNS OUT I don't like a lot of Westerns. Probably because I prefer more overtly stylized films and the genre seems to resist that.

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  • PsychoLarry1PsychoLarry1 Registered User regular
    I really love westerns, but it occurs to me that the genre has been really crap for women. The only two westerns I can think of that are female centric are Banditas and Bad Girls, both of which are pretty lame. True Grit has a plucky talented girl, but she spends all her time with men and Rooster Cogburn pretty much steals the show. Beyond that the female characters pretty much always either damsels or sex objects. I realize this isn't at all unique to westerns, but it seems exceptionally bad within the genre.

    Am I missing any notable ones that break this mold?

  • Dizzy DDizzy D NetherlandsRegistered User regular
    I really love westerns, but it occurs to me that the genre has been really crap for women. The only two westerns I can think of that are female centric are Banditas and Bad Girls, both of which are pretty lame. True Grit has a plucky talented girl, but she spends all her time with men and Rooster Cogburn pretty much steals the show. Beyond that the female characters pretty much always either damsels or sex objects. I realize this isn't at all unique to westerns, but it seems exceptionally bad within the genre.

    Am I missing any notable ones that break this mold?

    The Quick and the Death.

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  • BlackDragon480BlackDragon480 Bluster Kerfuffle Master of Windy ImportRegistered User regular
    edited December 2016
    The Quick and the Dead.

    Sharon Stone looking to take down a border town kingpin in Gene Hackman to get revenge for the death of her US Marshall father. And she looks to do so in a gunfight.

    It also has Leo and Russell Crowe doing some nice supporting turns, with Sam Raimi directing.

    And holy shit, it's 21 years old now!

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  • AstaerethAstaereth In the belly of the beastRegistered User regular
    I really love westerns, but it occurs to me that the genre has been really crap for women. The only two westerns I can think of that are female centric are Banditas and Bad Girls, both of which are pretty lame. True Grit has a plucky talented girl, but she spends all her time with men and Rooster Cogburn pretty much steals the show. Beyond that the female characters pretty much always either damsels or sex objects. I realize this isn't at all unique to westerns, but it seems exceptionally bad within the genre.

    Am I missing any notable ones that break this mold?

    Meek's Cutoff.

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  • TexiKenTexiKen Very cool. Verycool. Verrikool. Verikul.Registered User regular
    Women being poorly shown in westerns is just the mirror of men being poorly shown in romance movies.

    This is where Dr. Quinn tried to mend fences by giving us all open hearts neckalces.

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  • DracomicronDracomicron Registered User regular
    Haley Bennett was arguably the most important character in the new Magnificent Seven. But goddamn the cleavage was distracting. One of the characters mistook her for a prostitute, and honestly some of the brothel girls were more modest.

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  • AtomikaAtomika Torchlight Resistance HQ Propaganda DivisionRegistered User regular
    Haley Bennett was arguably the most important character in the new Magnificent Seven. But goddamn the cleavage was distracting. One of the characters mistook her for a prostitute, and honestly some of the brothel girls were more modest.

    yes, but it was a pretty typical patriarchal archetype the gave her motivation

    much like Unforgiven

    it's not, "Justice needs doing," it's, "We gotta help them poor women"

    Dracomicron
  • TenzytileTenzytile Registered User regular
    edited December 2016
    -Seven Men From Now
    -Winchester '73
    -The Wild Bunch
    -Canyon Passage
    -Unforgiven


    Honorable mentions:

    -Track of the Cat
    -Ride Lonesome
    -Stagecoach
    -My Darling Clementine
    -The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
    -Fort Apache
    -The Bend of the River
    -Silver Lode
    -Stars in My Crown
    -Wichita
    -The Naked Spur
    -The Ox-Bow Incident
    -Lemonade Joe
    -The Shooting
    -Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid
    -The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada

    Tenzytile on
  • PreacherPreacher Registered User regular
    TexiKen wrote: »
    Women being poorly shown in westerns is just the mirror of men being poorly shown in romance movies.

    This is where Dr. Quinn tried to mend fences by giving us all open hearts neckalces.

    The double butt jewelry?

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  • PreacherPreacher Registered User regular
    Justified is totally a western. Like you could change a few details and just about every character would fit in a post civil war marshal's office.

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  • TNTrooperTNTrooper Registered User regular
    Hell or High Water is pretty much a Western set in times.

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  • PreacherPreacher Registered User regular
    One aspect of westerns I feel is missing from a lot of modern takes on them is polite society intruding on their frontier living and feeling like the lawmen have no place in the new version of that society.

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  • A Dabble Of TheloniusA Dabble Of Thelonius It has been a doozy of a dayRegistered User regular
    Way of the Gun
    Three Amigos
    Unforgiven
    Bone Tomahawk
    The Sacketts

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  • AstaerethAstaereth In the belly of the beastRegistered User regular
    If I can talk about non-Westerns for a minute, here was me during the new Pete's Dragon:

    (first part of the film)
    Uh, well, I can see what they're going for, but isn't there an unaddressed ambivalence here between the 'call of the wild' where you get to be a free boy with no shirt, no shoes, no parents, and nobody to tell you to stop riding that dragon you don't know where it's been and, you know, the fact that kids are better off civilized and given love and food and health care and clothing than they are left feral? Wait, is that true? I knew I should have watched The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser already. Maybe I'm just too old for this movie. It's a kid's film, right? Disney! You've got the cliche environmentalist themes and here's Robert Redford talking about faith and maybe this just isn't FOR me, in the Twisp & Catsby way. Maybe I'm just a soulless adult whose sense of wonder has shriveled and decayed like a raisin in the inferno of responsibility and jobs and...

    (45 minutes in)
    Oh, hey, the stakes are clear for the first time. Suddenly my heart is three sizes too big. What a strange coincidence.

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  • TexiKenTexiKen Very cool. Verycool. Verrikool. Verikul.Registered User regular
    seems like only half a Paddington.

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  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited December 2016
    I really love westerns, but it occurs to me that the genre has been really crap for women. The only two westerns I can think of that are female centric are Banditas and Bad Girls, both of which are pretty lame. True Grit has a plucky talented girl, but she spends all her time with men and Rooster Cogburn pretty much steals the show. Beyond that the female characters pretty much always either damsels or sex objects. I realize this isn't at all unique to westerns, but it seems exceptionally bad within the genre.

    Am I missing any notable ones that break this mold?

    The protagonist in "Once Upon a Time" is female. Might consider her a damsel but sure as shit no one rescues her. Will try to get to the other stuff from Astereth later

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  • ThomamelasThomamelas Only one man can kill this many Russians. Bring his guitar to me! Registered User regular
    Atomika wrote: »
    It seems like, traditionally, Westerns glorify characters who are simply bad people, or at the very least are involved in conflicts presented far more solipsistically than a more realistic portrayal would allow. Antagonists in Westerns are often the blackest of blackhearted mustache-twirlers, so it makes our murdering/misogynist/misanthropic protagonist seem like the morally-appropriate counter, and conflicts are almost always resolved with gratuitous displays of violence.

    In short, many Westerns seem like right-wing power fantasies, with characters often motivated by patriarchal cliches, and that makes me really, really uncomfortable to lionize a large volume of those works.


    It's the subversive westerns I tend to go for, especially ones like The Proposition or Little Big Man, where the actual ramifications and implications of life in those dynamics is shown.

    So this is where historical and political context tends to come in to play. Generally in the post-war WWII Westerns you start seeing a shift to heroes who aren't necessary bad but very much damaged. For writers and directors, there were easily parallels between the horrors of WWII and the Civil War, along with the optimism of a chance to start over with the settling for the frontier and the idea of a post war modern world. The Western for some directors and writers starts becoming a way to handle the trauma of the war and trying to reintegrate into peacetime.

    You start to see the thematic element of being trapped in a cycle of violence. The idea that no matter what the protagonist tries to do, they will always be pulled back in. But you also see protagonists that tend to at least try to do something positive. The idea being given to the audience that while the demons can't be fixed, they either have, or could have done something with positive meaning.

    In the post Fordian Western is also a reflection of it's time. The Spaghetti Western comes out of a part the major upheaval of Italy in the 60's. You have the conflict between the Italian Left and the Church. A conflict between north and south over economic issues. The First Mafia War. Add to that the Italian Directors generally being more openly political, and you see a much stronger shift of the protagonist into Anti-Hero territory combined with a tendency towards deconstructing Ford.

    The transitional American Westerns of the 60's and 70's tend to be much more direct in the commendation of the issues of their main characters. It would be hard to make a reading of Hud or The Misfits as belief that the actions of the protagonists should be followed. Or anything but condemned. They are all pretty clearly broken or damaged people. Even The Searchers which is the end of the Fordian Western makes it clear that Ethan isn't a good person. That he has gone beyond redemption. And The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance drives that point home with:
    "This is the West, sir, when the legend becomes fact, print the legend."



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  • Harry DresdenHarry Dresden Registered User regular
    TexiKen wrote: »
    Women being poorly shown in westerns is just the mirror of men being poorly shown in romance movies.

    This is where Dr. Quinn tried to mend fences by giving us all open hearts neckalces.

    Men are given more to do in romance movies, though.

  • ThomamelasThomamelas Only one man can kill this many Russians. Bring his guitar to me! Registered User regular
    I really love westerns, but it occurs to me that the genre has been really crap for women. The only two westerns I can think of that are female centric are Banditas and Bad Girls, both of which are pretty lame. True Grit has a plucky talented girl, but she spends all her time with men and Rooster Cogburn pretty much steals the show. Beyond that the female characters pretty much always either damsels or sex objects. I realize this isn't at all unique to westerns, but it seems exceptionally bad within the genre.

    Am I missing any notable ones that break this mold?

    Cat Ballou
    Johnny Guitar
    Hannie Caulder
    The Furies
    Annie Get Your Gun
    The Belle Starr Story

    There are a bunch of really terrible movies about Calamity Jane that are just such crap I left them off.

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  • So It GoesSo It Goes We keep moving...Registered User, Moderator mod
    Ghoti wrote: »
    Wow, surprisingly little love for Three Amigos...

    It's a mail plane! See the little balls?

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  • So It GoesSo It Goes We keep moving...Registered User, Moderator mod
    Would you like to kiss me on the veranda?

    On the lips would be fine!


    (I love Three Amigos)

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  • Knight_Knight_ Dead Dead Dead Registered User regular
    I watched Bolt today for reasons.

    Bolt is... surprisingly good? Travolta's voice acting is hit or miss, and the story is fairly paint by numbers, but I laughed plenty and the animation almost entirely holds up.

    I did not expect that at all.

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  • BlackDragon480BlackDragon480 Bluster Kerfuffle Master of Windy ImportRegistered User regular
    All this talk of Three Amigos makes me want to demand @ElJeffe bring back the El Guapo avatar... or else I'll shoot the Invisible Swordsman.

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  • dispatch.odispatch.o Registered User regular
    edited December 2016
    ...Deadwood

    Has it been mentioned? Because holy fuck good times.

    Also, Dead Man because it was so pulpy. The scenes with Iggy Pop were awesome.

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  • ZampanovZampanov You May Not Go Home Until Tonight Has Been MagicalRegistered User regular
    dispatch.o wrote: »
    ...Deadwood

    Has it been mentioned? Because holy fuck good times.

    Also, Dead Man because it was so pulpy. The scenes with Iggy Pop were awesome.

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