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1960s, WESTERN

The Magnificent Seven (1960)

MagnificentSeven

Duration 2h 8m Rating (UK) U
Source of story Based loosley on the Japanese film “The Seven Samurai”
Director John Sturges
Writers/Script William Roberts (who did rewrites on set) the main scriptwriter was  Walter Newman who refued to be credited.
Starring Yul Brynner, Eli Wallach, Steve McQueen, Horst Buchholz, Charles bronson, Robert Vaughn, Brad Dexter, James Coburn

Elevator Pitch: When the inhabitants of a Mexican village are no longer able to tolerate the predations of a gang of bandits, they travel to Texas where they hire a group of down on their luck gunslingers to protect them, attracted more by the promise of three meals a day than financial reward. Over time the gunmen are required to confront the bandits, and their own place in the world as they become emotionally involved with the inhabitants of the village.

Content: No sex or nudity, although a young Mexcian girl looks soulfully at the youngest gunfighter, also just a bit of drinking. Chris, the leader gets the gang together and they ride off to the village which they fortify. The have gunfights with the bandits several times. In the first battle there is a fantastic tracking shot as the bandit leader and others ride at breakneck speed through the village gardens. In the third act they become reflective and in a variety of ways interact with the villagers before the final confrontation.

A View: I have seen this film many times, the first in a cinema in Falkirk when the ship on which I was serving was in Grangemouth. It blew me away. American critics were not impressed when it came out, but to be fair, whenever a foreign language film is remade into American they always hate the result. It was said to lose its impetus in the third act, also true but overall terrific stuff, and much better than the recent remake. So well worth seeing even at the cost of a download if you can find it.

Additional info: Yul Brynner and Steve McQueen became hostile to each other during the fllming and there are many examples of the latter upstaging the former. You would hardly notice today, due to McQueen’s later fame.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels

Discussion

One thought on “The Magnificent Seven (1960)

  1. I didn’t know about the Brynner – McQueen hostility during the making of this movie… Interesting post, thank you!

    Posted by Sam Simon | November 19, 2019, 9:43 pm

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