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November 1999, Week 1


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alloro55 <[log in to unmask]>
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Thu, 4 Nov 1999 23:43:04 -0800
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OUTLAND: Could be considered a western but time frame is 200 years too late.
ROB ROY and BRAVEHEART:  sure, but 500 years too early.

My idea of a "typical" Western:
Year: Anywhere from 1860 to 1910
Location: Preferably west of the Mississippi including California, Nevada,
Arizona(hey, I can't leave out  Tombstone) or Texas.
Attire: Ten gallon hats (Stetson's are o.k.), boots (spurs optional), and
six-shooters (yeah, revolvers) with bullets on the belt.
Plot: doesn't matter, any old conflict will do.
Characters: Good guys like The Duke (Stumpy's o.k. too!) versus antagonists
like Jack Palance in SHANE or Lee Marvin as LIBERTY VALANCE.
Standard requirements: sagebrush, cactus, tumbleweeds, whiskey, fist fights
and fast horses. Always always always have the good guy(s) heavily
outnumbered because a quick draw can always take out two to three bad guys
before they even get their guns out of the holsters, and never never never
show the heroes reloading unless it's Butch and Sundance fighting the
Federales and a little extra dramatic tension is needed.
Hey, it works for me!

Alan L. Rousseau

----- Original Message -----
From: plath3 <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Thursday, November 04, 1999 3:19 AM
Subject: What is a Western?

> The list's discussion of the Great American Western has led me to wonder
> what exactly is a Western?
> ROB ROY, for example has all of the elements of a Western, pioneers, land
> disputes, evil powerful men, and an ending in which the hero faces a
> famous mercenary swordsman (swordslinger?). It is, however, set in
> Scotland.
> HIGH NOON is arguably an allegory in a Western setting.
> OUTLAND, to give another example, sets the plot of HIGH NOON in deep
> space, but eliminates the allegorical elements.
> The GUNFIGHTER, though set in the West, has much more in common with film
> noir than with the traditional Western, while BRAVEHEART evokes the
> memory of films such as I WILL FIGHT NO MORE FOREVER.
> Is the Western simply any story whose setting is the American frontier
> between the Mississippi and the coast of California? Or is it any story
> whose setting is a "frontier", i.e. any geographically remote and
> climatically harsh environment (not necessarily American), and whose plot
> concerns the efforts to "civilize" that environment?
> I would appreciate any thoughts you might have.
> Peter Latham
> ----
> Screen-L is sponsored by the Telecommunication & Film Dept., the
> University of Alabama:

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