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The 16 Best Western Movies | The Art of Manliness

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by Brett & Kate McKay on June 4, 2013 495 comments in Movies, Travel & Leisure

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The 16 Best Western Movies | The Art of Manliness

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Few figures in history have had as powerful an impact on American masculinity as the cowboy. For over a century, the cowboy has for better or for worse been a standard of rugged individualism and stoic bravery for the American male. While the mythologization of the American cowboy began all the way back in the 1880s with dime novels and Wild West shows, it wasnt until the advent of twentieth century cinema that the cowboy cemented his place as an icon of manliness. The Western has been a popular genre of cinema since the very beginning of film, and successive generations of filmmakers have used the Wild West as a backdrop on which to explore the social issues of their respective eras. Many of the early silent films at the beginning of the 20th century were Westerns, the most famous being 1903s The Great Train Robbery. During the 1920s, the Western film genre produced some of Hollywoods first megastars such as Tom Mix and William S. Hart. These early Westerns were heavy on action, but light on plot. Their primary goal was to simply entertain. It isnt until the 1930s that the Western became an avenue for telling stories with searching and hard-hitting messages. Directors and screenwriters used the genre to overtly and symbolically explore the pressing subjects of their day like racism, nationalism, capitalism, family, and honor issues deeply meshed with manhood. During the Great Depression, for example, when men felt punished by the economy even though they had worked hard and done the right thing, Western plots often revolved around a man who is mistaken for an outlaw and falsely accused of a crime he didnt commit and must find the real criminal and seek justice himself. In the 50s, it was societys anxiety about conformity that began to be reflected through the prism of the Old West. Instead of taking on bad guys with a posse, the protagonists in these mid-century Westerns (Shane and High Noon being the best examples) were loners who were compelled by their own values to fight against wrong while those around them cowered in fear like sheep. The tenor of Westerns changed once again during the cultural, social, and political upheaval of the 1960s. Like many films during that time, the antihero now took center-stage, and the heroes in these films were typically outlaws who were fighting against a corrupt system of justice and inequality (see Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid). During the 70s and 80s, the classic Western went into hibernation. It wasnt until the late 80s and early 90s that the genre returned to prominence in film and TV. Reflecting the post-modern era in which they were made, these more recent Westerns are much more morally ambiguous (Unforgiven) or satirical and/or comedic (City Slickers) than their earlier counterparts. Because the Western has played such a huge role in the shaping of American masculinity (not to mention simply being enjoyable entertainment), I thought it only proper to highlight some of the best from the genre. Below youll find my picks. I tried to get a good mixture from different time periods. It goes without saying that John

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The 16 Best Western Movies | The Art of Manliness

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Wayne makes an appearance in several of these films. Enjoy.

High Noon

High Noon is film about being torn between duty and love and standing up for what you believe in, even when everyone else abandons you. Gary Cooper plays Will Kane, a town marshal from New Mexico, who settles down with his pacifist Quaker wife (played by Grace Kelly, one of your grandpas babes). Kanes plans to retire to a peaceful life are interrupted after he gets word that a former gunslinger is coming in on the noon train to settle an old score with him. His wife pleads with him to leave town, but Kane knows he cant. He has a duty to defend the town and his honor. Will finds himself alone in the battle as everyone in town, including his deputy sheriff, have turned away from him. The tension builds, leading up to the final gun battle the quintessential mano-a-mano showdown that historians say rarely actually happened in the Old West, but has become an indelible part of popular culture. Best line: Dont shove me Harv. Im tired of being shoved.

Stagecoach

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The 16 Best Western Movies | The Art of Manliness

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This is the movie that made John Wayne a star and set the standard for all subsequent Westerns (some would say it set the standard for all 20th century cinema). Directed by the legendary John Ford and shot on scene in Monument Park, Stagecoach follows a group of nine strangers as they cross dangerous Apache territory in you guessed it a stagecoach. All of the characters have their own personal demons that theyre running from and the journey through the treacherous Apache territory in many ways serves as a symbolic road to redemption for each of them. The acting and screenplay is top notch. Despite being filmed in 1939, the movie is still fresh and engaging. Be on the lookout for the epic chase scene featuring one of the most famous movie stunts of all time performed by Yakima Canutt. Best line: Well, there are some things a man just cant run away from.

The Searchers

In this film, also directed by John Ford, John Wayne gives the most intense acting performance of his career as the dark and vengeful Ethan Edwards, a man who vows to kill the Comanche raiders who murdered his beloved sister-in-law, brother, and took captive two of their daughters. Wayne does a fantastic job in embodying a conflicted, complex man whose racism and desire for revenge sets up a situation far more morally ambiguous than Cowboys vs. Indians. Best line: Thatll be the day.

Lonesome Dove

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Technically this isnt a movie, but rather a TV mini-series, but I dont care. Lonesome Dove is a Western every man should see. Even if you dont like Westerns, youll love Lonesome Dove. Its themes of friendship, regret, and love will resonate with any man. The action scenes are just icing on the cake. Based on the Pulitzer Prizewinning novel by Larry McMurty, Lonesome Dove follows two retired Texas Rangers Augustus McCrae (Robert Duvall) and Woodrow Call (Tommy Lee Jones) as they lead a cattle drive from South Texas all the way to Montana. The production on Lonesome Dove is, bar none, the best in Western cinema. The costumes, the locations, even the way the characters speak make you feel like youve been plopped on a horse in 1876 America. But what really separates Lonesome Dove from the rest of the Westerns on this list (and Id go as far as saying most movies ever made) are the characters. Thanks to top-notch writing and acting, Lonesome Dove is one of those rare movies that makes you feel like its fictional characters are real life people. Not only that, you feel like old friends with them by the end. Youll cheer their triumphs and bawl your eyes out when tragedy strikes. Do yourself a favor and rent the complete series and watch it. Youll be a better man for it. Trivia: Our sons name Augustus McKay was inspired by August McCrae. Thats how much I love this book and movie. Best line: It aint dying Im talking about, its living.

Unforgiven

Cinema often glorifies the Old West as a mythic time when good guys wore white and the bad ones wore black. In Unforgiven, director/actor/producer Clint Eastwood shines a light on the dark, violent, and morally ambiguous aspects of life in frontier America. Clint Eastwood plays William Munny, a once notorious and violent killer. Now, hes just a quiet and tired farmer who is a devoted father still mourning his dead wife. But

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Wills old life comes back to haunt him when hes asked to do a hit on a cowboy who slashed the face of a prostitute. Will is transplanted from his farm in Kansas to a town in Wyoming where he meets Sheriff Little Bill Daggett (Gene Hackman), a mean son-of-a-bitch who is determined to not let the hit go down, no matter what it takes. Hold onto your hats, partners, this isnt your grandpas Western. Best line: Hell of a thing, killing a man. You take away all hes got and all hes ever gonna have.

Shane

This is a great sheepdog movie. A quiet gunslinger who is trying to escape his past befriends a pioneer family that has settled out west. He attempts to settle down and become a hired hand to the family, but the ranchers who want to drive cattle through the homesteaders property are attempting to push them out. Shane tries to stay out of the disputes, but keeps being drawn in and is finally compelled to put his six shooter back on to protect his adoptive family. Perhaps the most touching part of the movie is the relationship Shane develops with the farmers son. Best line: A gun is a tool, Marian; no better or no worse than any other tool: an axe, a shovel or anything. A gun is as good or as bad as the man using it. Remember that.

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

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Based loosely on the real lives of Western outlaws Robert LeRoy Parker (aka Butch Cassidy) and Harry Longabaugh (aka the Sundance Kid), Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid is a classic movie about two buddies trying to make it in a changing world. Whats funny about this flick is that you forget that these guys were hardened criminals who robbed banks and trains for a living. The easygoing charm Robert Redford and Paul Newman bring to their roles makes you like the characters despite their choice of profession. Their clever hijinks and humor make the movie an enjoyable ride.

The Magnificent Seven

Inspired by the classic Japanese film Seven Samurai, The Magnificent Seven follows a group of seven American gunfighters who band together to defend an oppressed Mexican village. This film has it all: great story, great cast, and one of the most iconic movie scores of all time. Best line: Its only a matter of knowing how to shoot a gun. Nothing big about that.

Red River

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What happens to a man when hes consumed by obsession? Thats the question that we see answered in 1948s Red River. John Wayne plays Thomas Dunson, a determined and sometimes ruthless man who has the goal of forming the largest cattle ranch in America. With nothing but his trusty trail-hand (Walter Brennan) and a young boy who survived an Indian attack on his wagon train (Montgomery Clift), Dunson does just that. To make money, though, hes got to get the cattle to market, so Dunson sets out to drive thousands of cattle from Texas to Missouri. Along the way, Dunsons brutal and dictatorial leadership causes his young protege and adopted son to mutiny and take the cattle from Dunson. Dunson vows to find and kill his boy. Does he do it in the end? Youll have to watch the movie to find out. Best line: Get a shovel and my Bible. Ill read over him.

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly is the last in Sergio Leones trilogy of spaghetti westerns. Despite being the last, it has come to stand on its own. Even if you havent seen the film, you probably know something about it. Most likely youve heard the iconic theme song with its spooky wha wha wha shouts. And youve probably

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seen images and scenes of Clint Eastwood wearing a poncho and smoking a cigar. The film follows three cowboys during the Civil War who try to double cross each other in search of Confederate gold. Theres not much of a deep message in this film. Its just a lot of fun to watch. Best line: When you have to shoot, shoot. Dont talk.

True Grit (2010)

Hired by a young girl to track down the man that killed her father, Jeff Bridges takes on the role of Rooster Cogburn, the marshal with grit enough to bring the man to justice. The 2010 version is definitely better than the 1969 John Wayne version. Bridges simply did a superior job portraying Rooster Cogburn, and thanks to the Coen brothers, the movie just seemed more real and alive. Best line: Fill your hand you son-of-a-bitch!

The Wild Bunch

The Wild Bunch is a tale about a group of outlaws who see the world they know quickly disappearing. Set in 1913, the West by then was no longer wild. The old rule of might makes right had been replaced by government-dispensed justice. Moreover, technology had made many of the skills and know-how needed to survive and thrive in the Wild West obsolete. Sensing that their time is up, a group of outlaws decide to go out in a blaze of glory and gore. The Wild Bunch was and is a controversial film. Its violence and nihilism paints a bleak picture of life at the end of the American West. In many ways, The Wild Bunch symbolized the end of the

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The 16 Best Western Movies | The Art of Manliness

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classic American Western. Just as the outlaws in the film were out of step with a changing society, so too were Westerns out of step with 1969 America. Its interesting to note that very few new major Westerns were produced after The Wild Bunch was released in 1969. Best line: Lets go.

Rio Bravo

A small-town sheriff (John Wayne) in the American West enlists the help of a cripple (Walter Brennan), a drunk (Dean Martin, of course), and a young gunfighter (Ricky Nelson how dreamy) in his efforts to keep the brother of the local bad guy in jail. Director Howard Hawks made this film in reaction to High Noon. Both he and John Wayne despised what they saw as the wimpy and unmanly lack of resolve in Gary Coopers character. Im not sure I agree with Wayne and Hawks about that, but thats a debate for another day. Overall, Rio Bravo has everything you should expect in a good 1950s Western: action, adventure, and heroics. We even get to hear old Dean-O sing a tune. Best line: Hey, Dude! How do ya like them apples?

Tombstone

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After years of chasing outlaws, legendary lawman Wyatt Earp retires and takes up residence in the town of Tombstone, Arizona. His plans to live out his days as a respectable businessman are interrupted when a gang of hell-raisers called the Cowboys starts causing trouble in the area. Not able to stand the lawlessness, Earp joins his brothers in getting rid of the Cowboys. Tensions between the Earps and the Cowboys heats up and eventually leads to the infamous showdown at the O.K. Corral. Action-packed and fast-moving, Tombstone is definitely a Western that suits modern moviegoers tastes. Not to mention, it has some of the best mustachery in the history of cinema. Best line: Im your Huckleberry.

The Outlaw Josey Wales

Directing and starring Clint Eastwood. Its about a man named Josey Wales who lost home and family during the Civil War to a band of pro-Union Jayhawkers. Driven by revenge, he joins a posse of pro-Confederate soldiers so he can find the men who destroyed the things he loved. The Civil War ends and the band of Confederate fighters surrender. But not Josey. Revenge, sorrow, forgiveness, betrayal love, family, and honor take center stage in this Eastwood classic. Best line: Dyin aint much of a living, boy.

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Editors Note: I added this one after initial publication. I cant believe I forgot to put it in! Lots of other great suggestions in the comments too, by the way.

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford

This 2007 film directed by Andrew Dominik is the film version of the 1983 novel of the same name. Brad Pitt stars as Jesse James with Casey Affleck taking on the role of his killer, Robert Ford. When James gang plans a train robbery in Missouri, Ford makes multiple attempts to join the gang. Ultimately, Ford gets rejected by James, and so sets out to get revenge. The film is star-studded, but surprisingly had lackluster results at the box office despite excellent reviews, with one critic even saying that it is one of the most wrongly neglected masterpieces of its era. Best line: It seems to me if you have something to confess, you outta be right and you spit it out now.

The Shootist

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Nobody wants to die alone. Especially gunslingers. In a haunting portrayal that foreshadowed his own fate, John Wayne plays J.B. Books, an aging gunfighter dying of cancer who resigns himself to live out his days in private. But skeletons from his past prevent him from fading away, so he decides to go down the only way he knows how with his six-shooter blazing. Best line: I wont be wronged. I wont be insulted. I wont be laid a-hand on. I dont do these things to other people, and I require the same from them. What do you think are the best Western films of all time? Share your picks with us in the comments! Related Posts

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401 Caleb B. June 10, 2013 at 10:53 am I am going to echo some sentiment which has already been stated in the above comments, but is worthy of being repeated. Where is Once Upon a Time in the West? It is am IMDB top 25 movie, (and only recently moved out of the top 20 of all time movies) and well worth the consideration of any fan of Westerns. Also, and this to me is a more compelling reason to watch the movie Ennio Morricone, composed and directed the music for this movie as well as many of the famous Spaghetti Westerns now living in infamy. Ennio Morricone is in my opinion the foremost film score writer and contributor the world has ever known with a career lasting over 50 years, and still stands as a relevant figure in movie soundtracks (he recently has been involved with Django Unchained, Inglorious Bastards, and the Sherlock Holmes movies. Take the opertunity to look at some of his work, I guarantee you will not be disappointed. http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0001553/ CDB 402 Rick June 10, 2013 at 11:55 am This list should have been 18, and the missing entry is Sam Peckinpahs Ride the High Country with Joel McCrea and Randolph Scott. It is engaging, humorous but not funny, and it goes right to the heart of the Western values we yearn for today. I cant recommend this film highly enough. 403 Keith June 10, 2013 at 1:20 pm Silverado and Appaloosa. Also, Heat though thats a bit a stretch. 404 MorganGray June 10, 2013 at 1:52 pm Nah I think the best line in Josey Wales was You gonna pull them pistols, or whistle Dixie? 405 Dryer June 10, 2013 at 5:34 pm No appreciation for Open Range? 406 steve June 10, 2013 at 7:47 pm Big Country with Gregory Peck is my all time fave. Open Range has the best gunfight ever for its realism; Appaloosa for its brutal quickness. The Gunfighter with Gregory Peck is also noteworthy. And what about Support Your Local Sheriff? I cant believe that Silverado is 28 years old! My favorite line from Josey Wales is forget them guys. Buzzards gotta eat, same as worms. 407 Bill McKeown June 10, 2013 at 9:15 pm The Sons of Katie Elder has always been a favorite. John Wayne & Dean Martin. Filming was due to begin in September 1964, but had to be delayed until January 1965 after Wayne was diagnosed with lung cancer. After Waynes surgery to remove a cancerous lung and two ribs, the star insisted on doing his own stunts, and nearly contracted pneumonia after being dragged into a river.

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408 Mike June 10, 2013 at 10:45 pm My Darling Clementine, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, Winchester 73, Just to name a few of the missing of an impossible list. Good fun though. 409 Michael June 11, 2013 at 8:04 am Big Jake Best line: Jacob Big Jake McCandles: You can call me Father, you can call me Jacob, you can call me Jake. You can call me a dirty son-of-a-bitch, but if you EVER call me Daddy again, Ill finish this fight. 410 Kev June 11, 2013 at 1:16 pm Cat Ballou. Hour of the Gun. Destry Rides Again. Conagher. You Know My Name. How about Hud and Junior Bonner for a couple of modern westerns? 411 miles June 11, 2013 at 3:11 pm checkout the Culpepper Cattle Company.one of those movies that came and went with hardly anyone seeing it.you wont be disappointed. 412 Chad June 11, 2013 at 4:55 pm Pale Rider nuff said 413 Will McCall June 11, 2013 at 9:40 pm Excuse me, but where are The Three Amigos and Blazing Saddles??? 414 Wes June 12, 2013 at 6:35 am Glad to see Assassination of Jesse James (one of my favorite movies of all time) but The Hired Hand and The Proposition both deserve to be on here. 415 Culper June 12, 2013 at 7:26 am Dont forget Hud! 416 CB June 12, 2013 at 8:22 am How about the latest version of 3:10 to Yuma? 417 Joe June 12, 2013 at 9:48 am Dont forget The Big Country. Gregory Peck vs. Charlton Heston fist fight is an epic one for the ages. 418 steve June 12, 2013 at 1:35 pm how do you leave out Big Jake??? 419 chris June 12, 2013 at 1:37 pm
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My Name is Nobody. classic Henry Fonda and pretty darn funny, too. 420 Tim June 12, 2013 at 2:15 pm Before reading this, I noted to myself that if the Bale/Crowe version of 3:10 To Yuma wasnt on this list, then the list would be mortally flawed. This list is mortally flawed. 421 dg blackburn June 12, 2013 at 2:27 pm Silverado 422 Norl June 12, 2013 at 3:39 pm John Waynes The Cowboys. Not only the best western of all time, but one of the best movies of all time. Also, Quigly? Open Range? Silverado? Pale Rider? Good to see westerns getting some attention though. 423 Jim June 12, 2013 at 4:58 pm Conagher. Definitely one of the most under-rated westerns of the past twenty years and one of my favorites. I cant tell you how many times I watched it. Sam Elliotts best role. If youve never seen it, watch it and see if you dont agree. 424 Ando June 12, 2013 at 6:38 pm Umm, The Professionals? 425 Josh June 12, 2013 at 11:52 pm Wyatt Earp (2004) with Kevin Costner Its not your traditional gunslinger, tough guy movie, but it is one of my all time favorites. I love the whole concept of the businessman sheriff, rather than just a simple good guy or a bad guy. 426 Jedediah the GyroCaptain June 13, 2013 at 2:49 pm Great list! Id add The Unforgiven, starring Burt Lancaster, Audrey Hepburn and Audie Murphy. Lancaster was awesome as a man determined to protect his family from raiding Kiowa. Also, this was Murphys best, most under-rated performance. 427 Rocksquat June 13, 2013 at 8:10 pm Just came across this, well written list, and with 400+ comments I skimmed over them. If these were

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The 16 Best Western Movies | The Art of Manliness

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mentioned then right on! Id add One Eyed Jacks Brandos only turn in the directors chair Quigley Down Under set in Australi, but Sellecks too cool and Rickman may be the greatest villain actor ever! The Proposition Aussie as well but the acting, cinematography, and score are great And off the beaten path, a recent Korean movie The Good, The Bad, and The Weird an obvious homage thats a lot of fun. 428 Nate June 14, 2013 at 12:38 pm Im dumbfounded that Silverado is not on this list!! 429 chris b. June 15, 2013 at 5:55 am Im not sure if its been mentioned in the comments already, but Deadwood [though not a movie] was an excellent, if dark, look into a gold rush town & the people trying to hammer out a living, even at the expenses of others. Best line would most likely come from Al Swearengen. 430 Ryan June 15, 2013 at 9:25 am I havent seen Lonesome Dove but am interested in watching it. My family and I tend to be fairly cautious about the movies we watch; to avoid excessive violence, sex, etc., we usually avoid films that are more or less R-rated (although I know, the MPAA rating system can be a joke). My question is, where does Lonesome Dove fall in the spectrum? Does it have many objectionable, cover-your-eyes-kids, scenes? As a point of reference, I would say that Once upon a time in the West would be a rough threshold; any movie that is more R-rated than that probably wont be watched in my house. Thanks for the help! 431 hellzfireice June 15, 2013 at 5:20 pm Another vote for Open Range you the one killed my friend? 432 Michael June 15, 2013 at 6:59 pm Wheres Once Upon a Time in the West!?!? 433 Gerry June 16, 2013 at 12:28 am I feel that the movie Hombre should be one of the top-ten But, I am glad to see that the Wild-Bunch is on the list. 434 Jed June 16, 2013 at 12:45 am Hombre (Paul Newman)This movie should be on the list of the best! 435 Gerad June 17, 2013 at 11:28 am Overall a very good list.

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The only one I felt was missing was Big Jake. Three generations of my family have regarded it as the Dukes finest work. One day, Ill have to show it to the fourth generation. 436 Jared H. June 17, 2013 at 12:09 pm Good list. I would have to say my favorite all time is Appaloosa. Decent story but more than anything I like Ed Harris (who not only starred but directed) attention to accuracy. How often do you see shootouts and duels done that way? Even the sounds of the guns werent exaggerated. They even used the ejector rods on their single actions! Everett Hitch even cocks his gun a second time in the final duel just in case his first shot didnt kill the man. Attention to detail is often all too neglected. 437 Brad Fleming June 17, 2013 at 5:03 pm I would like to challenge you on Lonesome Dove, how about I hate rude behavior in a man, wont tolerate it 438 Don June 17, 2013 at 6:27 pm Big Country for sure. I loved how determined Gregory Peck was to ride that wild horse, just to prove it to himself, not to anyone else, especially not his fiancee. 439 Jim June 17, 2013 at 9:46 pm List must include Fort Apache and She Wore a Yellow Ribbon for sheer manliness! 440 windsandandstars June 18, 2013 at 7:43 am Gentlemen Some fine comments through and through. I am proud to note a few of these greats were filmed in my local area of Alberta, Canada: Lonesome Dove, Unforgiven, Open Range, The Assassination of The Outlaw Jesse James to name but a few. My all time fave is Eastwoods The Outlaw Josey Wales. It is wryly humorous and it was nice to see our old friend Chief Dan George. It also rains a lot! Happy Trails 441 gary June 18, 2013 at 12:46 pm Add Silverado. Youve got the wrong Rooster Cogburn its always the Duke. You can have all the rest of the 2010 cast, except for the Duke and Strother Martin. 442 Jon June 19, 2013 at 6:57 am Wow, When the remake of True Grit came out I laughed it off and refused to go see it because th original was so good that it didnt seem right to mess with it. But your recommendation convinced me to give it a try. I have to disagree. I found the new one to be stilted and flat. It was no where near as good as the original. P.S. The quote is fill your hands. as in put a gun in them. Not throw your hands.

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443 Alan June 19, 2013 at 11:46 am For the life of me, I wouldnt have thought thered be 17 movies about Best Western hotels 444 TunesterHB June 19, 2013 at 12:11 pm Ok, Jeremiah Johnson was the early west, but still the west. So I consider it a Western and one of my all time favorites. Best line: Watch your top knot! 445 cvj451 June 19, 2013 at 4:30 pm Great list, but I would throw in Cowboy with Glenn Ford and Jack Lemmon. 446 Dylan E. Hoover June 20, 2013 at 7:35 am I have a fondness for The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence. The last John Ford / John Wayne vehicle, it features fine performances from Ford and Lee Marvin. Dealing with the theme of a modernizing West, it has a challenging take on the Western iconography and the models of manliness. Definitely worth watching, in my opinion 447 Victor June 21, 2013 at 2:19 pm Once upon a time in the west a must see 448 Danny June 21, 2013 at 10:17 pm Once Upon a Time in the West with Henry Fonda and Claudia Cardinale is one of the best westerns ever made. Easily in my top 5. 449 Brendan June 23, 2013 at 9:42 pm No votes for Back to the Future Part III ? hahaha 450 Marius June 25, 2013 at 6:02 am First to my mind is Yellow Sky. Small cast, Gregory Peck always showing that basic decency despite smelling worse than an Apache. Male and female leads swapping headbutts its tough. Second: Eagles Wing. Ex-soldier and Amerindian raider fighting for the named horse, with little dialogue. A foreigners take on things can be intirguing. 451 Mm. June 25, 2013 at 8:53 am Best western from taming of the west era in my opinion is Red Dead Redemption which is a video game.I like it better than Wild Bunch because of excessive and pointless violence which is boring and out of place in western movie, wild west was never that violent. 452 jondunstan June 26, 2013 at 12:13 am I am not a huge western buff, though I have seen more than most people my age (mid-twentys). I would have to ask where people put Django Unchained in the list? I found it one of the best westerns I have watched ever. It is right up there with Open Range, as others have mentioned.

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The 16 Best Western Movies | The Art of Manliness

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453 Gerry June 26, 2013 at 9:41 pm The only problem with the Clint-made movies is all the shots that are fired from a six-shooter seem to be more than sixBut the movie UNFORGIVEN is a well-made movie and a must have for western-movie buffs! 454 lykigos June 27, 2013 at 5:17 pm Hello sir. Once upon a time in the west, The Outlaw Josey Wales, Lonesome Dove and John Fords films are my favorite. 455 Pez June 30, 2013 at 3:49 pm I enjoyed the list and pretty much have agreed with the inclusions. To round out a top list of westerns, I would have omitted True Grit (2010) and The Shootist (1976) (I did not see Assassination of JJ), and would have considered the following, in chronical order: Colorado Territory (1949), Winchester 73 (1950), Man of the West (1958), Comanche Station (1960), The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962) and Once Upon a Time in the West (1968). Im a tradionalist, so I do not include films set in the earlier Colonial period; Civil War films unless the war itself is minor to the story; nor westerns set in modern times. How could Hud (1963), for example, be considered a western, to me its a contemporary drama or melodrama set in the rural southwest. Although I am open to viewing all types of westerns, from simplistic early Bs to psychological noirish 1950s to 70s revisionist films, I still favor the works of the masters: directors Ford, Mann and Hawks. Best fun is to check out these lists and the comments after and maybe go check out a recommended film or two that you havent seen. 456 octagoner July 3, 2013 at 9:49 am My three Bs favorites: Barbarosa starring Willie Nelson?; Bite the Bullet with Gene Hackman; and A Big Hand For The Little Lady starring Joanne Woodward & Henry Fonda 457 peter jackson July 7, 2013 at 9:17 am the first true grit was great,no need to watch the second. 458 Justin July 9, 2013 at 3:18 pm I have to agree with peter jackson and Jon, the first True Grit is much better than the remake. 459 Jason July 10, 2013 at 12:56 am Western movies are legendary and worth making with actor typically known to make these movies. I dont see The Lone Ranger as one of these movies. 460 Matt July 12, 2013 at 9:51 pm I grew up watching westerns with my grandfather, its pretty much all he would watch; whether it was a T.V. program or a movie. I noticed someone said Big Jake. Thats one of my favorite movies. Also, I really enjoyed the remake of True Grit. I may be biased though, I love the Coens. 461 Kathy July 18, 2013 at 4:32 pm

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The 16 Best Western Movies | The Art of Manliness

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A great list of westerns I grew up watching with my father I still love watching them. Another of John Waynes is Chisum. I also prefer the original True Grit 462 Ronnie D. July 19, 2013 at 8:50 pm The new True Grit was terrible; why no No Country for Old Men? Is that not considered a modern Western? So much better than True Grit. Infinite. 463 Jim July 20, 2013 at 10:11 am The silents have been left out. While most were simply action films like you said, there are exceptions. Check out Hells Hinges and The Iron Horse. While both did have action, there was an interesting story line in them as well. Hells Hinges made Leonard Maltins list of greatest westerns. 464 Hank July 20, 2013 at 2:13 pm One of the best westerns ever was Monte Walsh the original not the remake. Hombre was another 465 Dewey July 22, 2013 at 12:47 pm Very true Tunester. Jeremiah Johnson, while not a western is among my list of favorites as well. Didnt put enough dirt down, seen it right off. Monte Walsh, Outstanding Movie! Both of them actually! Rio Lobo, Silverado, Fist full of Dollars, I could go on and on of course. New and old, there are lots of good Westerns to see. I would hate to try and list just 17, 25, or any real set number. 466 mah-10 July 23, 2013 at 3:18 pm Love the latest True Grit for the gritty way Rooster Cogburn was portayed. Also, the Kevin Costner version of Wyatt Earp is pretty good. Hate Dances with Wolves though. My fav line from The Outlaw Josey Wales is from Chief Dan George, it aint fer eatin, its just ferrrrr lookin through. 467 Master Tade July 24, 2013 at 11:12 am Open range? 468 Bombillo July 27, 2013 at 1:55 am Little Big Man was excellent and where is How The West Was Won? 469 ben July 27, 2013 at 10:22 am The Cheyenne Social Club w/ Jimmy Stewart and Henry Fonda. Buddy opposites, one of which is a proper gentleman who inherited a whore house and the high jinks and dilemmas associated with such. Light hearted and serious. Fun. 470 Matt July 28, 2013 at 1:42 am Jeremiah Johnson, awesome movie, absolutely full of quotable lines, I swear, a womans breast is the hardest rock that the Almighty ever made on this earth, and I can find no sign upon it.. Little Big Man, Go snake eyes.

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The 16 Best Western Movies | The Art of Manliness

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The Cowboys Im thirty years older than you are. I had my back broke once, and my hip twice. And on my worst day I could beat the hell outa you. Favorite Josey Wales lineBuzzards gotta eat, same as worms Honorable Mention Goin South, Dances With Wolves, and Tom Horn 471 Reno Villa July 29, 2013 at 4:28 pm Thank you for these beautyfull movies that my father every sunday at noon movie used to take , and bought a a good tasty sandwich with a smoked ham that I still smell it. 472 Robert July 30, 2013 at 1:10 am I have to add that the newly restored John Ford classic My Darling Clementine would be a great addition to this list as well. I also think Ride The High is a must as others have mentioned. Once Upon a Time in the West etc. Why not a top 50? 473 travis July 30, 2013 at 8:21 pm well ill have to say that dances with wolves is a very good movie 474 Duncan August 1, 2013 at 6:18 pm Silveradeo Django Unchained Bite the Bullet Little Big Man Wyatt Earp Some of my favorites. 475 ken harvey August 2, 2013 at 7:58 am The Sons of Katie Elder 476 OhBoy August 3, 2013 at 4:38 pm Django Unchained? Seriously? Stupidest attempt at a Civil War period movie I ever had the displeasure to see. I left the theatre felling like I had just been robbed. Nothing was accurate except the institution of slavery existed. Django Unchained should be the number one worst western ever. 477 Matt Chantry August 3, 2013 at 10:42 pm Have to agree on other comments including Silverado, Appaloosa, and Open Range. The scene where Costner realized hes tracked dirt into the house and tries to clean it up is brilliant. Hated Tombstone (except for Val Kilmer) and The Assassination of JJ. Maybe Ill give the latter another chance, though. Thanks to all the great suggestions from other commentators. 478 Bruno Parfait August 4, 2013 at 10:03 am Looks as if quite recent movies had to be included
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The 16 Best Western Movies | The Art of Manliness

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Jeremiah johnson is missing for sure ( hawk, going to the Musselshell),Deadman, tooplus the Far Country, the Big Skyand a few othersnot so many 479 Sam Cracchiolo August 4, 2013 at 6:57 pm The Treasure of Sierra Madre. A classic! Quote: Badge? We dont need no stinkin badge. We can sell the donkeys too. 480 Steve August 11, 2013 at 5:25 pm Way too many to narrow down to just 17. Im just glad for The Western Channel where they can all be seen, again and again. 481 Christian August 18, 2013 at 4:29 pm Every western starring John Wayne should be number 1and the best line in Tombstone, You gonna do somethin, or just stand there and bleed? 482 Rip August 21, 2013 at 12:30 pm Best westerns Lonesome Dove Searchers Conagher Culpepper Cattle Co Outlaw Josey Wales Monte Walsh (Lee Marvin one) Pale Rider Wild Bunch Stagecoach (original with John Wayne) Big Trail (Raoul Walsh classic) Westerner (Walter Brennan standout) Rio Bravo Quigley (best lookin cowboy) Shane ( but the kids voice is like fingernails on a chalkboard) 3:10 to Yuma (Ford and Heflin) Tombstone Tom Horn Will Penny Should not be on a list list 1.Open Range (horrible dialogue Nye on ten years and Kostner fans 10 shots out of his six gun bad gunfight mistake Silverado (so hoaky and corny that I thought Mel Brooks directed ( i. e. the very funny Blazing Saddles) Spaghetti Westerns Leone was making fun of US westerns I wish he would put the dumb harmonica well you know Magnificent seven + the too numerous sequels. The Silverado of the 60s . and on and on

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The 16 Best Western Movies | The Art of Manliness

http://www.artofmanliness.com/2013/06/04/best-western-movies/

483 R. August 22, 2013 at 3:13 pm ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST! 484 Fred August 25, 2013 at 10:09 pm What about (WARLOCK) Henry Fonda & Anthony Quinn! 485 josh September 5, 2013 at 10:04 pm The Man From Snowy River! 486 Ed September 8, 2013 at 9:47 am I wish to see the western movie Tom Horn make the list. A western docudrama of a character, played by Steve Mcqueen, caught in the changing times form the Old West to the pre-industrial period. 487 Dan September 13, 2013 at 12:00 am Hows about Evil Roy Slade.Now he was just plain EVIL!! Seriously though, the John Wayne, Robert Mitchum and Arthur Hunnicut movie, EL DORADO has to be rated one of the best westerns?? 488 Alex September 15, 2013 at 4:44 pm Seraphim Falls 489 Timothy September 26, 2013 at 10:46 am Hondo staring John Wayne! 490 Jacopo September 28, 2013 at 7:37 pm If you think Theres not much of a deep message in this film. Its just a lot of fun to watch. about The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, you have understood nothing about Leones film. 491 Joseph October 13, 2013 at 10:20 pm How is Once upon a time in the west not on this list? 492 Steve October 22, 2013 at 12:08 am I started rewatching many Westerns on YouTube lately. Amazing to me how many were made in the 50s and 60s. Many of the B-westerns had some great actors if not the budgets of those on this list. 493 Mersin October 26, 2013 at 7:17 am Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid the best 494 Terry October 29, 2013 at 1:39 pm 17 seems like an odd number. i would agree with your picks, but Id add Will Penny, The Cowboys,
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The 16 Best Western Movies | The Art of Manliness

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and going way back The Big Trail. Others, like Once Upon a Time In the West and The Westerner come very close, but you have to, I suppose, have a cut-off number. My issue with Once or any of the spaghetti westerns is that they dont ring true to me, although some are very good, compelling movies. My other issue with your list is True Grit. While I agree that the new version is superior to the original, it should be plain to anyone that Jeff Bridges portrayal of Rooster is whether consciously or unconsciously a masterful and reverent impression of John Waynes performance. 495 Pete October 29, 2013 at 3:20 pm Tombstone Hells coming with me ! Unforgiven You sure killed the hell outa him. Open Range Men are gonna be killed today and Im the one whos gonna kill them. Open Range I got me a hankerin for Swiss chocolate. Previous Comments Leave a Comment Name * E-mail * Website

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