Author Topic: The Magnificent Seven (1960)  (Read 1618 times)

Offline Antares

  • Super Heavy Poster
  • ******
  • Posts: 4096
    • View Profile
The Magnificent Seven (1960)
« on: August 15, 2010, 03:24:05 AM »
The Magnificent Seven





Year: 1960
Film Studio: The Mirisch Corporation, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Genre: Western, Classic
Length: 128 Min.

Director
John Sturges (1910)

Writing
William Roberts (1913)...Screenplay

Producer
Walter Mirisch (1921)
Lou Morheim
John Sturges (1910)

Cinematographer
Charles Lang (1902)

Music
Elmer Bernstein (1922)...Composer

Stars
Yul Brynner (1920) as Chris Adams
Eli Wallach (1915) as Calvera
Steve McQueen (1930) as Vin
Charles Bronson (1921) as Bernardo O'Reilly
Robert Vaughn (1932) as Lee
Brad Dexter (1917) as Harry Luck
James Coburn (1928) as Britt
Horst Buchholz (1933) as Chico

Review
       John Sturges had been directing movies since 1946; he would find his first success with Bad Day at Black Rock in 1951. By the latter part of the decade, the western proved to be his forte. Gunfight at the OK Corral, and Last Train from Gun Hill, had met with both critical and box office success. So in 1960 he returned to the genre that was his bread & butter. Yul Brynner had convinced United Artists to secure the rights to Akira Kurosawas Shichinin no Samurai, a film viewed by many to be a Japanese western. Sturges was signed on to direct, probably because he had once stated that he could take any story and make it into a western.

       After a brief legal squabble with Anthony Quinn over the rights to the film, cast and crew were re-located to Cuernavaca, Mexico to shoot the film. Brynner had final approval over casting and following Sturges’ recommendation hired Steve McQueen (fresh from his success in television on Wanted: Dead or Alive) for his breakout role as Vin. This decision would cause Brynner nightmares over the course of shooting the picture. McQueen’s deliberate scene stealing antics would drive Brynner crazy and the resulting competition between the two actors would create some of the most riveting scenes ever produced in a western. Rounding out the cast were four newcomers; James Coburn, Charles Bronson, Robert Vaughn, the woefully miscast Horst Buchholz, and for the seventh gunmen, one of Sturges’ drinking buddies, Brad Dexter. Lastly, Eli Wallach would play the main protagonist Calvera.

       One of the main keys to the success of this film wasn’t derived from an actor’s performance, but was the result of the masterful film score written by Elmer Bernstein. It is probably the most recognizable score in film history, rivaled only by Mancini’s Pink Panther theme.

       At one time, I fell into the same trap that other cinephiles fall into; I unjustly compared this film to the original concept film. Over time I realized that this is a great film in its own right, and deserves its place in cinema history as one of the best westerns ever produced.


Review Criterion
5 Stars - The pinnacle of film perfection and excellence.
4 ½ Stars - Not quite an immortal film, yet a masterpiece in its own right.
4 Stars - Historically important film, considered a classic.
3 ½ Stars - An entertaining film that’s fun or engaging to watch.
3 Stars – A good film that’s worth a Netflix venture.
2 ½ Stars - Borderline viewable.
2 Stars – A bad film that may have a moment of interest.
1 ½ Stars – Insipid, trite and sophomoric, and that's its good points.
1 Star – A film so vacuous, it will suck 2 hours from the remainder of your life.
½ Star - A gangrenous and festering pustule in the chronicles of celluloid.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2010, 06:16:05 PM by Antares »

Offline Achim

  • Mega Heavy Poster
  • *******
  • Posts: 7170
    • View Profile
    • ya_shin's site
Re: The Magnificent Seven (1960)
« Reply #1 on: August 16, 2010, 06:26:25 AM »
the woefully miscast Horst Buchholz
Can you expand on this? I never found his performance to stick out like a bad sore. He is supposed to be the rookie and I never had a problem wit him playing that.

Offline Antares

  • Super Heavy Poster
  • ******
  • Posts: 4096
    • View Profile
Re: The Magnificent Seven (1960)
« Reply #2 on: August 16, 2010, 06:52:02 AM »
the woefully miscast Horst Buchholz
Can you expand on this? I never found his performance to stick out like a bad sore. He is supposed to be the rookie and I never had a problem wit him playing that.

Buchholz was too mired in the method style, and he came across as over the top in his performance. His accent also drove me nuts. He sounds european as opposed to Mexican.

Offline Achim

  • Mega Heavy Poster
  • *******
  • Posts: 7170
    • View Profile
    • ya_shin's site
Re: The Magnificent Seven (1960)
« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2010, 07:24:59 AM »
All good points. Maybe being non-native speaker myself made me go easy on the accent problem... I don't recall whether I found him too over the top, really, but maybe it's somewhat subjective.