Movies on the Big Screen as They Were Meant To Be Seen.
Dir: Richard Brooks
Writer-director Richard Brooks earned a pair of Oscar nominations for this vastly underrated film. A Texas rancher enlists a team of mercenaries to rescue his wife, who has been kidnapped by a Mexican bandit. But the hired guns - Burt Lancaster, Lee Marvin, Robert Ryan and Woody Strode – soon learn that their employer hasn’t told them the whole story (the outstanding cast also includes Ralph Bellamy, Claudia Cardinale and Jack Palance). Beautifully shot by Conrad Hall, THE PROFESSIONALS is an irresistible mix of action, intrigue and humor that ranks among the very best Westerns of the 1960s.
Dir: Elliot Silverstein
Jane Fonda plays the title role in this comedic hit, named by the AFI as one of the top 10 Westerns of all time. Schoolteacher Catherine Ballou must resort to desperate measures when her father and his Wyoming ranch are targeted by the Wolf City Development Corporation, but the man she hires as a gunfighter turns out to be a drunk. For his dual role as inebriated Kid Shelleen and his assassin brother, Lee Marvin won a Best Actor Oscar. Among the memorable supporting performers are Nat King Cole and Stubby Kaye, who provide running musical commentary.
Noted producer Thomas H. Ince penned the script to this film, one of silent star William S. Hart’s first feature-length Westerns. A new parson (Robert Edeson) converts saloon dancer Belle Shields (Rhea Mitchell), drawing her away from her stagecoach robber boyfriend (Hart) – until she attracts the attention of a ne’er do well gambler.