Rio Bravo is a western that's rich in characterization and great dialogue; it also doesn't lack its share of awesome shootouts. John Wayne and Dean Martin give Oscar-worthy performances. Angie Dickinson, Ricky Nelson, and Walter Brennan aren't too bad themselves. A fine film worth watching over and over again.
Nothing more than a typical western that clumsily tries to be more.
Reviewed by NWRdr4 for The Searchers at 2010-02-06 21:04:26
I'm not sure I understand the hype for this film. A complex character study? No way.
The main flaw: John Wayne's racist, obsessed character, Ethan, is (at one point in the film) ready to shoot his niece for becoming "a buck" (think Dances with Wolves). Yet, near the end of the movie, as he's chasing her down, he suddenly decides to save her, and carry her off into the sunset. This is not characterization--it's a cop-out, the writer's way of saying "I'm too lazy to do anything else, so I'll throw this at the audience." It's frustrating as hell, considering the many great moments the movie had. The scene should've been fleshed-out, so that we can see some epiphany that Ethan comes to.
Anyway, if you wanna see a good John Wayne western there's plenty other better ones you can watch.
Gone with the Wind has everything going for it, and nothing against it; it's simply perfect in every way. The illustrious story, which some have described as "overlong," can be more appropriately called "epic." The lead characters do not just give great performances--they create living, breathing characters. The brilliant usage of the film's admirably daring color-scheme perfectly compliments the mastery behind the camera; every shot is beautiful in its own right. And to top it all off, the movie's large-scale plot is never muddled--even in its most chaotic moments, the distinguished characterization and extensive set-pieces are strong enough to regroup the loose ends and effectively pull the film back together--that is, until the next splendid plot twist.
This is one of those movies i have to watch when I come across it on cable. Wayne and Martin have great chemistry, and Brennan adds just the right amount of humor. Wayne is basically playing Wayne by this time, but he's so #!@%*# good at it, you just have to go along.