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: Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid (1973)  ( 102143 )
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« #105 : February 14, 2007, 04:24:15 PM »

Just for the record, I tried to watch the 2005 version today, and I found it so horrible I turned it off in forty minutes.

Having seen the '88 version, I do know what's missing.  I was particularly galled by the fact that half of R.G. Armstrong's lines in the jailhouse scene were trimmed out for no apparent reason. 

And did anybody notice that the Ida Garrett scene was edited in out of order?  Consider: there's the scene in the saloon where Garrett meets with Alamosa Bill, and tells the little boy to go tell Mrs. Garrett that he'll be home for dinner.  Also, at the end of the scene, Alamosa Bill sets out to begin his expedition.  Then we go to the scene with Mrs. Garrett.  Pat tells his wife that he's going down to the bar to talk with Alamosa Bill, and Ida asks him if he'll be home for dinner.  That's a really blatant, amateur mistake, and after watching that scene I saw no reason to watch the rest of the movie. 



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« #106 : February 14, 2007, 07:20:09 PM »

  One of the things I liked best about the '88 version, I think it was that one, was the credit sequence.  It was just like the one used in The Wild Bunch.  And the appearance of "Directed by Sam Peckinpah" is pretty good, although not as good or well known as Pike's "If they move kill them line" in TWB followed by Peckinpah's name.  I'm really glad I have that DVD though, it's a flawed movie but one I really enjoy.

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« #107 : February 14, 2007, 07:50:59 PM »

Yes, the movie has it's flaws but I absolutely love it. I just love the atomosphere of this film. The cinematography is downright beautiful. That shot of Pat Garret riding off into the sunset is outstanding. Sam Peckinpah was a great director boy.




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« #108 : February 24, 2007, 03:26:52 AM »

never liked parts of the costumes & haircuts, much unlike BUNCH and other Sam-classics it looks very much 1973

That's one of the things I thought...


Now I'm totally confused about what version I actually saw. Nevermind, I'll probably never have a chance to see another one, so I don't have to care too much. What I'm more confused about, are all the actors and characters you are discussing here... This film really seemed to me like being just about the two title characters.

What makes me feel sorry is exactly the begining... that's one thing I'd probably enjoy more with more viewings, when I would already know who is who. I just jumped into it and probably missed some more subtle things, like the appearance of Peckinpah's name discussed somewhere above. Yes, the title sequence was cool, but maybe a bit too complicated for me to follow.

Generally, I liked it, but it really is cold and distant. It might actually be one of the things I liked about it, however. I think I was surprised in a good way by this film. Because all I've read here made me a bit afraid of it, but it was better than I expected.

James Coburn was really great. Worn out might be the best word for describing his Garrett. :)


BTW, another point to the evergoing discussions about women and westerns... women had slight majority among the viewers in the cinema. ;)



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« #109 : July 18, 2007, 11:20:17 AM »

Well i watched this again thanks to my local library and...Like EL TOPO we've got another hippy western.(although not as annoying as TOPO)
Kris sucked as usual, Bob was annoying...and yes, i know gringos suck! (sarcasm)
Two scenes i liked were the shotgun full of dimes and Slim's Knocking on Heavens Door death (I'm a huge fan of the song)


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« #110 : July 18, 2007, 11:31:27 AM »

Well i watched this again thanks to my local library and...Like EL TOPO we've got another hippy western.(although not as annoying as TOPO)
Kris sucked as usual, Bob was annoying...and yes, i know gringos suck! (sarcasm)
Two scenes i liked were the shotgun full of dimes and Slim's Knocking on Heavens Door death (I'm a huge fan of the song)



I don't really get how people think Kris sucks. I think he's a pretty good actor. I'm not saying he's going to win awards, but he can handle himself.




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« #111 : July 18, 2007, 12:03:54 PM »

Yes, the 2005 cut isn't so good. The best lines missing!

But the scene with Garrett's wife is good. She even knows what's going to happen with him. "You are dead inside."

No mercy for missing lines! Turner version is much better.

James... oh my God. He's not playing, he IS Garrett.
Oh... I feel pity for his charakter.  :'( Just looking into his sad eyes and I know he didn't wanted it and he did it, but for what? For nothing. And he lost his peace forever. At the end being murdered by Poe and the other SOBs.

Who do you think the third killer is? Who first shoots him.


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« #112 : July 19, 2007, 06:00:56 PM »

Yes, the 2005 cut isn't so good. The best lines missing!

But the scene with Garrett's wife is good. She even knows what's going to happen with him. "You are dead inside."

No mercy for missing lines! Turner version is much better.

James... oh my God. He's not playing, he IS Garrett.
Oh... I feel pity for his charakter.  :'( Just looking into his sad eyes and I know he didn't wanted it and he did it, but for what? For nothing. And he lost his peace forever. At the end being murdered by Poe and the other SOBs.

Who do you think the third killer is? Who first shoots him.

It was me Jill, I was the first one to shoot him! O0




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« #113 : July 20, 2007, 05:02:12 PM »

Ignore.

« : July 20, 2007, 05:07:01 PM dave jenkins »


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« #114 : July 20, 2007, 05:33:02 PM »

Tucumcari just kills every men I like!  >:D

I heard a theorie that the murderer is the little boy who throws him with stones in the end. He grow up... and he killed him.  ;D


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« #115 : April 03, 2009, 11:06:45 AM »

Finally saw the 2005 cut and I have some quick observations.

note: I can't really compare versions b/c it's been at least 5 years since I saw the 88.

anyway

I like KK in this movie and Scorsese's 'Alice'. Dylan shouldn't have had a screen role, that I think we all can agree with. The score is great, I've owned that album since I was a kid.

my biggest gripe is the manner in which the cameo players get killed. The audience isn't going to care for characters introduced to die, these scenes simply do not work (nor do the lyrics to KOHD). It would be like if Leone played Jill's theme as Elam, Strode and Mulock were shot by Bronson. It's irrelevant whether or not the audience is familiar with Slim Pickens or not.

this was noted before but this has some really rough edits.

DJ, I don't see any problems with the final sequence. When Coburn shoots the mirror, my impression was that the guy was disgusted with himself, seems logical enough. I also don't have any qualms about the last shot when the child throws rocks at Coburn. It won't be the last time that Shane is in a director's thought process.

I love the first thirty minutes or so, everything up to and including the escape. After that, not enough time is spent with Billy. He becomes an afterthought so a guy from gunsmoke can get his head blown off.

overall, PGaBtK is undeniably flawed but it's more intereting than the vast majority of westerns I've seen. I just wish that Peckinpah wasn't such a drunk.



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« #116 : April 03, 2009, 03:36:13 PM »

Quote
my biggest gripe is the manner in which the cameo players get killed. The audience isn't going to care for characters introduced to die, these scenes simply do not work (nor do the lyrics to KOHD). It would be like if Leone played Jill's theme as Elam, Strode and Mulock were shot by Bronson. It's irrelevant whether or not the audience is familiar with Slim Pickens or not.

 O0 O0 O0



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« #117 : April 03, 2009, 05:16:07 PM »

I just went over this thread again and I missed your post, groggs. I would have just quoted it since we completely agree about those scenes.



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« #118 : July 03, 2009, 11:33:06 AM »

Rewatched this movie again today (the good cut) so here's a review. This is slightly tweaked and updated from an IMDB comment I wrote awhile back since I didn't feel like writing something entirely new.

Quote
Perhaps even more than the infamous Major Dundee, Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid (1973) is touted by Sam Peckinpah fans as a lost masterpiece, ruined by studio interference. This is certainly valid to an extent, especially given the cruel cutting and micromanaging wrought by MGM's James Aubrey, but on the other hand Peckinpah himself brought on many of his through his excesses of drink and drugs. The result is this curious, interesting but unsatisfying film, which is great at times but never quite the sum of his parts; it's Peckinpah's most schizophrenic film, alternating scene to scene from brilliant to indifferent to outright bad.

In early 1881, Pat Garrett (James Coburn), an aging outlaw, is elected Sheriff of Lincoln County, New Mexico. He is pressured by Governor Lew Wallace (Jason Robards) and business interests to track down former partner William H. Bonney, alias Billy the Kid (Kris Kristofferson) and his gang. Bonney is captured but escapes, killing two deputies (Matt Clark and R.G. Armstrong), and Garrett - accompanied by several reluctant and generally short-lived deputies (Slim Pickens, Katy Jurado, Jack Elam, Richard Jaeckel) and one hired to keep an eye on Garrett (John Beck) - is forced to track down his former friend, decimating his gang in the process. Garrett is made to feel guilty over "getting fat" and betraying Billy, and when he finally confronts the Kid, it seems like he's killing himself.

The biggest problem with Pat Garrett, even in its "preview cut" form (I'm not touching the God awful 2005 edit with a ten-foot stick), is that it's unfocused and virtually plotless; only a few characters appear for more than one or two scenes, and most scenes play as isolated episodes. It is also a surprisingly distant film, especially compared to Ride the High Country and The Wild Bunch, and it's virtually impossible (for this writer at least) to become deeply involved in the story. Billy in particular is hard to care much about, as he does little more than drink, kill, and whore throughout the course of the film, with only the thinnest and most facile motivation given to his actions. And the theme that Garrett and Co. are selling out is expounded upon so often that you think Rudy Wurlitzer was getting paid for each time he wrote them.

The film's use of various Western icons in various bit parts actually (with a few exceptions) undermines what Peckinpah is trying to achieve; by not letting us get to know these characters, it becomes virtually impossible to sympathize with them. Slim Pickens' famous death scene is allegedly the most poignant and moving scene in the film, but as we just met him two minutes ago when he buys it, it's hard, for me anyway, to care what happens to him. One might argue that Pickens' own iconography and backstory bring weight to the character, but I'm not buying it; Once Upon a Time in the West employs a similar strategy in employing Henry Fonda, Jack Elam and Woody Strode as villains, but on the other hand the film works on its own terms. If this argument has any validity, it's saying that Pat Garrett is basically an in-joke for Western buffs - and I don't buy that as much of an argument.

Some cast members are outright terrible: John Beck is obnoxious as Poe, and while that's appropriate to the character he grates on the viewer's nerves. A very young Charles Martin Smith whines his way through the opening scene as a particularly obnoxious cohort of Billy's. Emilio Fernandez, so effective as General Mapache, has a worthless role as Paco, the Mexican sheep-farmer who befriends Billy, and his scenes are some of the worst Peckinpah ever filmed. Richard Jaeckal gives a wooden performance and his horrible-looking wig doesn't help matters. But most of the cast members simply aren't around long enough to make much impact - Pickens, Jurado, Paul Fix, Dub Taylor, Elisha Cook Jr., Jason Robards, and Barry Sullivan (among many others) are all in the film for five minutes or less, just long enough for a viewer to recognize them before they bow out. Bob Dylan's bit has little impact on the film; his twanging, whining, droning music, however, is borderline terrible. It might be good outside of the film, but for the most part it distracts from the action and makes the film periodically insufferable.

The film does, however, have sporadic moments of brilliance, starting with James Coburn's performance as Garrett. Coburn gives the best performance of his career, as the sarcastic, biting, fatalistic Garrett. He is a nice counterpart to Deke Thornton, but even more compromised and fatalistic. Garrett genuinely regrets most of his actions - many of his confrontations with Billy's gang are outright murder - but does them anyway, driven by a cruel sense of duty and inevitability; he knows that times are passing him by but does his best to stay alive, regardless of the cost. Coburn is wonderfully subtle and you believe he IS Garrett, rather than acting the part. Kris Kristofferson is good if unremarkable as Billy, though he can hardly be blamed for the poor interpretation of his character. And there are some members of the supporting cast who are effective: Richard Bright and L.Q. Jones as two of Billy's more colorful gang members, R.G. Armstrong, playing the psychopathic Deputy Ollinger ("Repent, you son of a bitch!"), and Chill Wills as a gutter-mouthed, shotgun-toting bartender.

Peckinpah's direction is sporadically brilliant. The shootouts of the film are blunt and violent and lack the visceral thrill of The Wild Bunch's blood-soaked massacres. This is not a criticism; in fact, it is very effective. The film's art direction is wonderfully authentic; the whole film has a rustic, lived-in, worn-out look that adds immeasuribly to the film's depressed atmosphere. There are some truly brilliant sequences sprinkled throughout; the shootout at Billy's hideout and Billy's escape from jail, the chance encounter and duel between Billy and Alamosa Bill (Jack Elam), Garrett's "shootout" with a river barge, the slow, methodical murder of Holly (Bright) by Garrett, Peckinpah's cameo as a coffin maker, Garrett shooting a mirror after killing the Kid. All of these scenes individually are among the best work Peckinpah has ever done; it's shame they don't gel into a more pleasing whole.

Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid is a difficult and frustrating film to write about. For every good scene there's one that makes you scratch your head and ask "What the hell's going on?" It's a good film with occasionally great scenes, but it's far from a masterpiece.

Rating: 7/10 - Recommended

http://nothingiswrittenfilm.blogspot.com/2009/07/pat-garrett-and-billy-kid.html

PS: Anybody else think that the ending goes on, like, forever? I found it pretty damn near insufferable.



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« #119 : July 03, 2009, 03:33:29 PM »

DJ, I don't see any problems with the final sequence. When Coburn shoots the mirror, my impression was that the guy was disgusted with himself, seems logical enough. I also don't have any qualms about the last shot when the child throws rocks at Coburn. It won't be the last time that Shane is in a director's thought process.
Both are examples of what we call "over egging the pudding."



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