Friday, July 31, 2015

My Three Favorite Westerns - In Bullet Point Form

Here is my contribution to Emma and Olivia’s epic Legends of Western Cinema Week! I could ramble about these for forever and a day—and yet I love them so much that (excepting Apple Dumpling Gang) I find my impressions rather agonizing to put into words. Even so, I simply could not let the party pass without talking about them. I dabbled with the idea of full-length reviews, but I felt that this might be a better way to start off with this Extremely Touching subject for myself. (Besides now you, my readers, won’t drown either. :))


The Apple Dumpling Gang – I listed this one first because, hey, it was! For not only was it the first western, but it is one of the first movies I ever viewed. Romantic, hurt your sides laughing, and too sweet for anything, this is the most rollicking western EVER! Finally it’s a Disney classic, folks, so what else need be said? Ah one thing, it has Barney in it. Yes indeedy. Trust me, your education is incomplete until you see this movie.


High Noon – This is “My” Movie. The one I thrill to, cry over and go into dreamy ecstasies about. Every viewing I drink in new depths to love and pour over within the story. The drama is understated with a mystery that leaves your imagination spinning with possibility. And even though it’s not my favorite dress, I would still wear Amy’s wedding dress as mine in a second, because it’s hers. And the expressions! - faces and the emotions people show through them is a fascinating thing and this movie is absolutely a-thrill with heart-wrenching ones. And the theme song… The Theme Song!!! “Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling….” I cry over that, too. :) No, I don’t cry during every movie—just my heart-stories. And oh, is this ever one of them!


Four Faces West – It’s simple and sweet—the climax is not a shoot-out, but an extremely tense and silent struggle for the hero—and the end… ah the end leaves me in tears every single time! (Remember what I said about my heart-stories? :)) This is just such another. The heroine Fay is a nurse, making for some charming moments when she takes care of the snake-bitten hero. Panicking; however, is not in this hero’s books and the story being what the story is that makes for a very neat twist. One of the fun facts about the movie is that Joel McCrea and Frances Dee (the hero and heroine) were actually married. My brother’s response when I told him? “I thought that kiss looked a little rehearsed.” I believe him, as that makes it tenfold adorable. :) The rest of the characters—from the extremely important gambler to the obnoxiously hilarious little boy (and their interactions)—are perfect. That really is what makes this movie so great, everything is exactly where it should be and happens according to what I want, yet with twists that were totally unexpected making for a very fun experience. :)

There I did it! I managed to write with more or less coherence about two of my three Favorites of all Films. Thank you so much Olivia and Emma for hosting this splendid party! Now on to you friends…

What are some of your favorite stories?

Do you like Westerns?



19 comments:

  1. Eeeeeep!!!! (Thanks so much for participating, by the way, Èowyn!)

    The Apple Dumpling Gang. YUSS. I love it muchly:D

    Oh, wow…it seems I should really look into High Noon and Four Faces West! Are they tearjerkers in a good (as in, happy) way, or in an "ohhhhh the PAIN" way?

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    1. Olivia,
      You are most welcome and thank you thank you for hosting it!

      Everytime I see you mention Apple Dumpling Gang on your blog it gives me a happy jolt, so I was only too glad to add to the reams about this most jolliest of tales. :)

      And for the tears: it's for both the happiness and the pain, not though, I hasten to add that the films end sadly. It is rather that I'm sitting there moaning (strictly inside of course, unless the emotion cannot be suppressed), "You poor sweet thing, I know everything will turn out for you, of course, but still the agony you are having to suffer now!" And then I proceed to enjoy every minute of it. :) So yes, they end happily!

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  2. Alright, so I haven't actually seen any of these, but I've been on the lookout for High Noon for a while!

    Thanks so much for your contribution, Eowyn! :-)

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    1. Emma,
      High Noon is the BEST! And though I know it's not everyone's cuppa a joe (hence it won't be everyone's favorite) it is still such a classic that I think almost everyone (more or less ;)) should see it!

      You are most heartily welcome, friend. This party was certainly one of the highlights of my summer. :)

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  3. OOH! Four Faces West! That's one of those Westerns so few people seem to have heard of. I love Joel McCrea, so it was one I watched and really liked. I've seen High Noon, of course, but never seen The Apple Dumpling Gang. That one seems to be very popular.

    ...just my heart-stories...

    Heart-stories might be the coolest way I've ever heard it put to refer to those stories/movies that just mean so much to each of us.

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    1. DKoren,
      Ah yes, I just "happened" to run across it via.... I actually forgot. But it was a very slight lead as Nancy Drew would say. :) The library had it, which is also somewhat surprising. I got it and... well it was utter and complete love at first viewing. :)

      Thank you! I have always found it so difficult to adequately describe those stories that mean SO MUCH MORE, so you may be assured that I was very happy when that line came to me. :)

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  4. I agree with DKoren, Four Faces West is so little heard of. Joel McCrea is one of the best actors (western and otherwise), and it is a pity that more folks haven't heard of him!
    Four Faces West is a great story where character triumphs over safety and self preservation. It is interesting that it was based on a story by Gene Rhodes, who was a real cowboy and author of western novels that he often based on real events of the west that he had experienced personally. The story was titled "Paso Por Aqui" and is on my list of books to read!

    I really enjoyed seeing Joel McCrea and Frances Dee act together as well, as a matter of fact that was the one thing that influenced my decision to purchase that film of his over the others!

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    1. Annie,
      Joel McCrea and Frances Dee have to be one of the cutest film couples ever! I agree, the end is indeed entirely gripping and wonderful. :) After watching FFW I did order Paso Por Aqui from the library, it wasn't quite as.... well.... utterly terrific in the same way as the movie, however it wasn't time wasted as in the same collection I discovered a new top favorite of his The Desire of the Moth. :)

      Thank you for visiting!

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  5. The Apple Dumpling Gang! It is so sweet and funny. :) I love Donovan's character growth. And the kids are so hilarious. My family quotes the one line a lot: "Clovis don't like to be touched". heehee :)
    I need to watch High Noon again! -whisper- I didn't actually care for it that much the first time around but I'm hoping I'd like it better on a re-watch -whispering ends-
    I've never even heard of Four Faces West! It sounds really good, though. I'm off to the library website to check for it! ;)

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    1. Natalie,
      The lines in Apple Dumpling Gang are indeed PRICELESS. :)

      And you don't need to feel bad about High Noon. :) I perfectly understand. All of my family members think it is an excellent story and understand why it is so dear to me (even though to them it is simply a good story). However I DO also have several other people who are near and dear who think I'm rather insane for liking it AT ALL. So I've seen it before and, indeed, you haven't grieved me in the least. ;)

      Ah and Four Faces West! I hope you can find it. :) I will be eagerly awaiting your thoughts!

      Have a lovely Sunday, friend!

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    2. Haha, oh, good. :) I'm glad it doesn't upset. I can certainly see why someone would like it, though, and I do want to see it again to see if my opinion of it grows!

      Unfortunately our library does not have Four Faces West (it's sadly lacking in old movies) but I will keep it on my to-buy list. Perhaps I'll even find it at a garage sale sometime! We have a lot of those up here. ;)

      Thank you! It was a very nice Sunday!

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    3. Natalie,
      No worries. :) But I AM very interested to see what you think on another viewing as High Noon is certainly one of those stories that can take a bit of thought to get used to. :)

      That is too bad about your library, but it is great about your garage sales! We have quite a few in a town near us, but I've never really found anything truly breath-taking. :)

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    4. Eowyn,
      Yes! When I get around to the re-watch I'll definitely tell you about it. :)

      Haha, yes. We rarely find anything amazing at garage sales, although we can get some handy things there. I think the nicest things I've gotten were a pair of boots for winter....some old movies on dvd...and probably some books. :)

      Of course, there's about 10 "nothing" garage sales to every good one, but it's still fun! :)

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    5. Natalie,
      Yes I totally understand -- garage sale-ing (like thrift shopping) is one of those sports which need great dedication and patience! :)

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  6. I've been wanting to see Four Faces West for a while now, but it hasn't happened yet. But High Noon and The Apple Dumpling Gang I've seen over and over, ever since childhood. I really like Gary Cooper in HN -- one of my favorite roles of his, but I get very angry with Grace Kelly's character for not supporting her husband a bit, and it took me several other movies to actually start liking Grace Kelly.

    But The Apple Dumpling Gang I could watch over and over and over... and I have! Recently, too, as my kids all enjoy it. In fact, we were thinking of watching a movie later today to beguile away the rainy-day-and-VBS-is-over-and-Mommy-has-a-cold blues, and I'm feeling like this may be it. Such a funny, happy movie!

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    1. Oooh! Oooh! Looks like FFW is free for streaming on Amazon Prime right now, so I've added it to my watch list! Been watching a lot of westerns these last few weeks, so hoping to see this one soon!

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    2. Hamlette,
      Your wish to watch Four Faces West is a very good one indeed and deserves to be satisfied soon. ;)

      Grace Kelly does take a bit of getting used to, but you can really start to see her point as the film progresses. In many ways I don't think it is her pacifism getting in the way of supporting her husband, but her fear for his life which (especially considering what happened to her father and brother) is understandable! That's a bit of what I think.... but then, I think about it quite often. :)

      Apple Dumpling Gang is the perfect afternoon watch. :) I bet you had fun!

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    3. Possibly next week! We shall see :-)

      I do get Grace Kelly's character's point, but I disagree with her nonetheless.

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    4. Hamlette,
      I completely agree that Amy's point is wrong, but then so many times in real life people (at least I do ;)) behave in irrational ways when faced with painful decisions and.... I thought of something else really brilliant in connection to this point, but I forgot it, so it will have to be saved for another day. :)

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