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Author Topic: Lawman (1971)  (Read 20673 times)
uncknown
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« Reply #60 on: May 23, 2009, 12:34:13 PM »

WATCHED IT LAST NITE.
really good piece of work,

Question: Lancaster shooting North's man in the back at the end; he was running away and posed no threat
Not sure why Maddox did this unless he wanted to get back with her but he left without her?
So, was this his way of cutting himself off from his past completely, before starting a new life OR his way of letting her know he cant change after all.


HuhHuhHuh?? Undecided

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« Reply #61 on: May 23, 2009, 12:37:48 PM »

I'd have to pop in the DVD again to tell you for sure.  But doesn't Lancaster tell Robert Ryan in the sheriff's office that he through and that he's heading back without taking in the rest of the culprits, right before he goes out into the street?

Lancaster tells Ryan he is dropping his vendetta.
As he is leaving town Cobb's men let him go w/o provoking or starting the shooting.
The irony of the ending is the fact thatit is the cowardly shopkeeper who tries to shoot him in the back which starts the tragic chain of events.

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My article on the restoration of the The Big Gundown
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« Reply #62 on: May 23, 2009, 01:02:24 PM »



Question: Lancaster shooting North's man in the back at the end; he was running away and posed no threat
Not sure why Maddox did this unless he wanted to get back with her but he left without her?
So, was this his way of cutting himself off from his past completely, before starting a new life OR his way of letting her know he cant change after all.



I think, there is no rational reason for killing this man. For me it's simply, when the violence starts, he gets overwhelmed by it, and so he also does this unnecessary killing. One of the better ideas of Lawman, and maybe the only really surprising one.

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dave jenkins
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« Reply #63 on: May 23, 2009, 10:18:52 PM »

Let's see what the screenwriter says, shall we?

Quote
One question often asked about the ending of Lawman (and a subject of recent debate on the internet), is why Maddox, a man defined by his rigid adherence to the law, shoots the fleeing and unarmed Hurd Price (J.D. Cannon) in the back? Wilson laughs before replying: "Burt Lancaster asked, Michael Winner asked. Everybody wants to know! And the answer is because I wanted him to do it. And that is the real answer. The justifiable answer is that Maddox tried to walk away, and Laura (Sheree North) is going to come with him, right? He wants out. Maybe, as he says to her, it's time. Or maybe I can get a town like you do, Cotton, that pays a little dividend and I sit out my years easy. Or maybe quit altogether. And these people call him back. For no reason at all they call him back. And it's over! Then Luther Harris (Walter Brooke) tries to shoot him in the back. And then the one gunman (William Watson) draws a gun and comes firing at him. I mean, the whole thing comes back. And then Maddox wants to stop even then. And Bronson's son (John Beck) pushes it even farther. He can't get out of this morass. And in the middle of this morass is this coward (Price), who stands in the way, who is married to--or not married, but who has his woman in a sense--and he's ruined everything. He's one of the people who've ruined everything! So why the fuck should he live? And Maddox has a personal hatred against this one man. Remember, this one man tried to bushwhack him, [and] he was standing there with the others, ready to kill him, wasn't he? But it is a personal thing [and] it is an act of murder. It's a coldblooded murder. There's no way around it. And there's no going back from it. . . ."

--Gerry Wilson in Exshaw, John, "Back Off, Lawman," Cinema Retro, Vol 5: Issue #14, 2009, p. 15.

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« Reply #64 on: May 23, 2009, 11:37:38 PM »

Let's see what the screenwriter says, shall we?

--Gerry Wilson in Exshaw, John, "Back Off, Lawman," Cinema Retro, Vol 5: Issue #14, 2009, p. 15.

did you get permission to reproduce that excerpt?  Angry

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« Reply #65 on: May 24, 2009, 07:54:06 AM »

You've heard of fair use?

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« Reply #66 on: May 24, 2009, 12:15:43 PM »

You've heard of fair use?

just byb
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« Reply #67 on: May 24, 2009, 07:26:06 PM »

just byb
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« Reply #68 on: December 05, 2013, 03:49:21 AM »

Watched this on the 50 inch, Winner's zooms are a bit more noticeable but the film is still great, regardless. Give it a go if you haven't already.

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« Reply #69 on: December 05, 2013, 06:03:58 AM »

Does everybody here loves that film ?  Over ten thousands hits for a thread about LAWMAN, I find that fascinating Smiley

To me Winner always was a film maker with a modest amount of talent. Somehow Bronson got something out of it (and I myself like Bronson, therefore I saw all these films more than once). But his films felt dated even back in the 70s.
I thought LAWMAN is one of his better films of course, but it wouldn't appear in my Top 50 Westerns list. The dialogues, Winners direction,
Lancaster looks rather bored - not even Robert Ryan can save it. I think.
I saw VALDEZ IS COMING on Blu-ray recently for the very first time, now that was an interesting film I thought, much
better than LAWMAN.

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« Reply #70 on: July 23, 2014, 02:19:31 PM »

I gave this another view recently and I was way off here, though I've known that for a long time. I had to delete my comments where I said Winner wasn't a good director, when I'm a big fan of The Mechanic, Death Wish, Lawman and Chato's Land.

This has a very tight script, and the love interest scenes actually add to the plot and character development. This could have been close to a masterpiece if there was a new composer, some better set/costume design and if Winner held back the zooming a bit (and some other shots were distracting). His direction wasn't nearly as on point as in the other three aforementioned films listed above.

That's not to say this isn't a very good film, it's morally complex, quickly paced and has a great cast.

Lawman is a winn...worthy movie.

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« Reply #71 on: June 20, 2017, 04:53:05 PM »

TT is bringing it to blu in September.

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« Reply #72 on: June 21, 2017, 04:36:29 AM »

I'll add some timely thoughts.

I'm a lawman. Do you know what a lawman is, Crowe? He's a killer of men.

Lawman is directed by Michael Winner and written by Gerry Wilson. It stars Burt Lancaster, Robert Ryan, Lee J. Cobb, Robert Duvall, Sheree North and Richard Jordan. Music is by Jerry Fielding and cinematography by Robert Paynter.

The Lawman of the title is Jared Maddox (Lancaster), who arrives in the town of Sabbath to serve warrants on the group of rowdies responsible for the death of an old man. His cold hearted approach to his work, however, doesn't endear him to the townsfolk.

A man gets caught in his own doing. Can't change what you are, and if you try, something always calls you back.

Traditional Western that deals in the conflict between law and justice, Lawman, like the leading man, broods significantly. The overriding theme of if Maddox's enforcement of the law justify's the means, is tailor made for Winner's affinity for all things vengeance flavoured. Violence is not in short supply, the director gleefully keeping things gory, and the characterisations of the principal players are smartly complex. The excellent cast turn in equally great performances, the Durango locales are beautifully utilised by Winner and Paynter, and the production design is grade "A" quality.

It's an anti-backlash movie of some substance, where spicy and thoughtful dialogue comes forth from the mouths of deftly shaded characters. Highly recommended to Adult Western fans. 8/10

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