I watched The Searchers (1956) tonight. Directed by John Ford and starring John Wayne, it's rated by the American Film Institute as the greatest Western ever made, and consistently comes in their top ten of greatest films of all time.
I thought it was pretty good, but I'm not sure I can see what all the fuss is about. John Wayne gives a fine, nuanced performance, the landscapes are brilliantly shot, and it's an interesting study of obsession. But the film seemed to hurtle through the dramatic climaxes without giving them time to sink in, there was some clunky humour that didn't sit too well, and some of the cast were overacting like mad. It may have influenced everyone from Martin Scorcese to Steven Spielberg, but I can think of westerns I have enjoyed more.
Lifetime best: 500/363/573 @ 220 belt only
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