Re: RARA-AVIS: noir-ish westerns

From: Stephen Burridge (
Date: 20 Aug 2009

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    I viewed "The Tall T" recently and enjoyed it very much. It starts out quite sunny but soon gets pretty dark, suddenly and irreversibly.

    On Thu, Aug 20, 2009 at 2:52 PM, tomarmstrongmusic <> wrote:

    > Sorry for using that troublesome word in the title of my post, but...we've
    > had discussions about the overlap between typical rara-avis material and
    > Westerns before, and I watched a couple of films this week that fit the
    > topic. I highly recommend both, currently in rotation on Encore.
    > "The Day of the Outlaw" stars Robert Ryan and Burl Ives, directed by Andre
    > de Toth. "The Tall T" is a Budd Boetticher/Randolph Scott cheapie. They have
    > somewhat similar stories about tense standoffs with dangerous creeps holding
    > hostages. Both are largely character-driven. Of the two I preferred the
    > former for its unique winter-time setting, stark direction with a lot of
    > wide angle shots that emphasize the vulnerability of the people within the
    > setting, a more flawed protagonist, and the scene where the gang dances with
    > with the town women - all they are doing is dancing, and yet the
    > psychological violence that's being done is thoroughly quease-inducing.
    > Highlights of "The Tall T" are the well-developed villain characters played
    > by Richard Boone and Henry Silva.
    > Neither of these movies is really a full-on noir, in the classic sense that
    > the protagonist is screwed from page one and goes downhill from there -
    > although the Ryan comes close. But both might appeal to any cross-genre fans
    > on this board.
    > Oh and "The Ride Back" starring William Conrad and Anthony Quinn is an
    > understated gem too.
    > Tom Armstrong

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