Day: February 23, 2011

260 Movies You Really Oughta See

COMEDIES

Airplane

Amazon Women On The Moon

Animal House

Arsenic And Old Lace

Beetlejuice

Better Off Dead

Blazing Saddles

Clerks

Clerks II

Down Periscope

Johnny Dangerously

Mother, Jugs & Speed

Never Give A Sucker An Even Break

Office Space

Oscar

Sleeper

South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut

The Bride Came C.O.D.

Tropic Thunder

Young Frankenstein

 

EPIC DRAMAS

A Face in The Crowd

A Raisin in The Sun

As Good As It Gets

Black Narcissus

Boogie Nights

Citizen Kane

Glory

Imitation of Life

Jaws

Lolita

Nothing But A Man

On The Beach

Raging Bull

Rocky

Schindler’s List

Seven Samurai

Shawshank Redemption

Spartacus

Taxi Driver

The Bad and The Beautiful

The Lion In Winter

The Ten Commandments

The Third Man

To Have and Have Not

Twelve Angry Men (both versions)

Vertigo

Gone With The Wind

Cape Fear (both versions)

A Bronx Tale

Falling Down

Angels With Dirty Faces

 

FANTASY

Excalibur

Jason And The Argonauts

Ladyhawke

Star Wars

The Adventures Of Baron Munchausen

The Empire Strikes Back

The Neverending Story

The Princess Bride

The Seventh Seal

The Sword And The Sorcerer

The Thief Of Bagdad (1940)

The Wizard of Oz

Time Bandits

Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory (1971)

 

SPORTS

A League of Their Own

Brian’s Song

Cool Runnings

Eight Men Out

Friday Night Lights

He Got Game

Pride Of The Yankees

Remember The Titans

Slapshot

The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars And Motor Kings

White Men Can’t Jump

 

CHICK FLICKS

Clueless

Fried Green Tomatoes

How Stella Got Her Groove Back

How To Marry A Millionaire

Pretty Woman

Sense and Sensibility

Steel Magnolias

Terms of Endearment

The Bridges of Madison County

Waiting to Exhale

What Women Want

 

SCIENCE FICTION

2001: A Space Odyssey

A.I.: Artificial Intelligence

Alien

Back To The Future

Blade Runner

Dark City

Dr. Cyclops

Enemy Mine

eXistenZ

Forbidden Planet

Gattaca

Planet of The Apes

Robocop

Soylent Green

The Blob (both versions)

The Bride of Frankenstein

Westworld

 

ACTION/ADVENTURE

48 Hours

Aliens

All Through The Night

Big Trouble In Little China

Die Hard

Dr. No

Enter The Dragon

Equilibrium

Indiana Jones And The Temple Of Doom

Jurassic Park

King Kong (Original & Peter Jackson remake)

Mad Max

North by Northwest

Predator

Raiders of The Lost Ark

Silver Streak

Terminator 2: Judgment Day

The 13th Warrior

The Fifth Element

The Hidden Fortress

The Last Dragon

The Manchurian Candidate (1962)

The Road Warrior

The Terminator

 

WESTERNS

Butch Cassidy & The Sundance Kid

Dead Man

El Dorado

Hidalgo

My Name Is Nobody

Once Upon A Time In The West

Open Range

Pat Garrett & Billy The Kid

Quigley Down Under

Ride The High Country

Silverado

The Good, The Bad And The Ugly

The Magnificent Seven

The Missouri Breaks

The Professionals

The Searchers

The War Wagon

The Wild Bunch

The Wrath of God

Tombstone

True Grit

Unforgiven

 

MUSICALS

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum

Cabaret

Chicago

Dreamgirls

Grease

Guys And Dolls

How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying

Jesus Christ, Superstar

Little Shop of Horrors

Singin’ In the Rain

South Pacific

The Blues Brothers

The Music Man

The Sound of Music

The Umbrellas of Cherbourg

The Wiz

 

WAR MOVIES

Apocalypse Now Redux

Full Metal Jacket

Kelly’s Heroes

Letters From Iwo Jima

M*A*S*H

Paths of Glory

Platoon

Saving Private Ryan

The Bridge Over The River Kwai

The Dirty Dozen

Where Eagles Dare

 

HORROR

American Werewolf in London

Angel Heart

Halloween

House on Haunted Hill (1959)

Night of The Hunter

Night of The Living Dead

Nightmare on Elm Street

Poltergeist

Psycho

Stir of Echoes

The Abominable Dr. Phibes

The Black Cat

The Changeling

The Exorcist

The Haunting (1963)

The Last Man on Earth

The Thing (both versions)

 

ODDITIES

Barton Fink

Blue Velvet

Crash

Dogma

Donnie Darko

Edward Scissorhands

Eraserhead

Ghostbusters

Heathers

Ichi The Killer

Miracle Mile

Naked Lunch

Videodrome

Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

 

CRIME

Bonnie & Clyde

Ghost Dog: Way of The Samurai

Goodfellas

Heat

Jackie Brown

L.A. Confidential

Miller’s Crossing

Pulp Fiction

Scarface

Shadow of a Doubt

Shaft(1971)

Sin City

The Conversation

The Departed

The Godfather Trilogy

The Maltese Falcon

The Thin Man

 

SUPERHERO

Batman (1969)

Batman (1989)

Batman Begins

Danger: Diabolik

Hellboy

Hulk

Iron Man

Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins

Sky High

Spider-Man

Superman

The Phantom

Dick Tracy

The Rocketeer

The Shadow

Unbreakable

 

ANIMATION

A Boy Named Charlie Brown

American Pop

Antz

Chicken Run

Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs

Despicable Me

Fantasia

Finding Nemo

Happy Feet

Heavy Metal

Laputa: Castle In The Sky

Lilo And Stitch

Streetfight

The Aristocats

The Castle of Cagliostro

The Incredibles

The Lion King

The Tune

Toy Story

UP

Wizards

7 Men From Now

1956
Paramount Home Entertainment

Produced by Andrew V. McLaglen, Robert Morrison and John Wayne (uncredited)
Directed by Budd Boetticher
Screenplay and Story by Burt Kennedy

7 MEN FROM NOW is the kind of movie that my mother likes to call “a good ol’ fashioned western” and it’s easy to see why. First off, it’s got Randolph Scott starring in it and if there’s a Holy Trinity of Western Icons then Randolph Scott certainly must be in it (just for the record, my candidates for the two other members of that trinity are John Wayne and Clint Eastwood) and it’s a lean, bare bones movie that tells a highly suspenseful and compelling story in 78 minutes. Despite the short running time, the movie never feels rushed and there’s an amazing amount of characterization and psychological depth. It doesn’t require you to invest a lot of time in it. It tells its story of greed, revenge and redemption without unnecessary padding or wasted scenes and dialog.

Ben Strider (Randolph Scott) is a man on a mission. In the town of Silver Springs seven men held up the Wells Fargo office and made off with $20,000 dollars. During the robbery, a female clerk was shot and killed. The clerk was Strider’s wife. His grief over her death is further fueled by his guilt. Strider was the former sheriff of Silver Springs who lost the last election to a younger, savvier man who played politics better than Strider. Strider was offered the job of deputy but his pride wouldn’t allow him to take the job and so his wife had to go to work to make ends meet.

While on the trail of the seven men Strider encounters John Greer (Walter Reed) and his wife Annie (Gail Russell) on their way to a new life in California and they decide to travel together as they’re riding through a dangerous patch of renegade Indian country. They also encounter Bill Masters (Lee Marvin) and his sidekick Clete (Don ‘Red’ Barry) who also ride along but for other reasons. It turns out that Masters knows who robbed the Wells Fargo office and he figures to tag along and let Strider kill the men while he makes off with the loot. He hopes that Strider won’t get in his way but if he does…well, a man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do in The Old West, right?

The situation gets complicated by the obvious mutual attraction Strider and Annie have for each other, an attraction the quick witted Masters picks up on and uses for his own ends. And the seemingly meek John Greer is hiding a dangerous secret of his own that even his wife knows nothing about but when it’s brought to light changes everything between these characters.

Lee Marvin has the best role in the movie and makes the most of it. Bill Masters is a complicated character and for much of the movie you’re never really sure of whose side he’s on. He saves Strider’s life twice during the movie and calls him ‘Sheriff’ even though he has no official authority. Masters cheerfully admits that Strider locked him up twice but the way Marvin delivers the line you get the impression that Masters deserved to get locked up and Strider caught him fair and square. By the time the movie got to the climatic showdown between Strider and Masters there’s real emotional drama due to the time invested in the relationship between the two men. The relationship between Strider and Annie Greer is a little more complicated in that Annie is immediately drawn to the stoic, handsome Strider who bears so much tragedy with a sort of nobility that she’s fascinated by. Certainly Strider is more heroic than her husband who’s a nervous, talkative type who’s totally out of his depth in the savage wilderness.

If you’ve never seen a Randolph Scott movie then this is a terrific one to start with. You watch Randolph Scott and you’re seeing the template that Clint Eastwood based his western performances on. Scott is the quintessential western hero: a man of action and few words, a straight shooter with his own rough morality and code of honor that is unshakeable and unbreakable.

And for a movie with such a short running time there’s a surprising amount of action: there’s three or four major gunfights, an Indian attack, a suspenseful showdown in a saloon between Masters and the leader of the gang who stole the $20,000 and a couple of scenes between Strider and Annie where you’re really not sure if they’re saying what they think they mean or if they’re saying what you think they mean.

So should you see 7 MEN FROM NOW? If you like westerns at all and are a fan of the genre I’d say yes with no reservations at all. It’s not a classic of the genre but it’s a superior example and well worth you time to watch. If you don’t like westerns I’d still say to give it a try. The complex, suspenseful relationships between the characters as well as the great dialog may win you over.

78 minutes