So, I went to Tennessee where my family just moved to from California. I wasn’t extremely delighted about that, but it’s hard to not get caught up in the excitement, especially the music when you’re in Nashville. Everyone is warm and friendly, cowboy boots are the thing, the weather is kind of dramatic and I decided I most definitely didn’t mind my parents moving to charming Nashville, Tennessee, afterall.
So, it got me into the country style phase (which I never liked, but let’s face it: I’m from a long line of country folks and cowboys) so, missing home.. I guess I just felt sort of nudged to give country style another chance.
And so, in that country phase comes old Western movies! And although it takes awhile to get into the story, it’s a bit slow compared to the other genre of movies, no color, very generic characters, but I’m starting to really like them! This one was quite good. It was John Wayne’s breakthrough role and it was a surprising thrill to see him so young.
With old Western films, I’ve also seen the racist side of attitudes and depicting characters. Depicting American Indians in such a way is clearly racist, but to me, it shows how things used to be. Watching old Westerns are like traveling back in time. The roles for women are obviously very traditional. To see guns being used to kill so quickly, so easily … was it really that way?
Another old Western I saw was Winchester’73 and My Darling Clementine which were interesting to watch as well, but I chose Stagecoach to talk about.
The film has long been recognized as an important work that transcends the Western genre. Philosopher Robert B. Pippin has observed that both the collection of characters and their journey “are archetypal rather than merely individual” and that the film is a “mythic representation of the American aspiration toward a form of politically meaningful equality.” In 1995, the film was deemed “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” by the United States Library of Congress and selected for preservation in their National Film Registry. Still, Stagecoach has not avoided controversy. Like most Westerns of the era, its depiction of Native Americans as simplistic savages has been criticized as clear evidence of racism.
This film reminded me of how quickly men proposed back then. Ringo kid just asks Dallas to marry him after liking what she looked like and how she behaved. (My grandpa proposed to my grandma after 3 weeks being together!) This doesn’t seem to happen today. People were very driven to get married young, have children and live in a traditional manner.
I stayed glued to the screen during the whole movie.
But, that’s all I can remember. I watched it awhile ago. I only had time to update today. Until next time. Maybe another Western.