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Sam Peckinpah (Official MoFo's Discussion Thread)

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Thanks for resurrecting this thread, Matt. First of all because that's a cool list of films and filmmakers that Sam admired. And secondly because I got to go back and fix all those busted image links from years ago!



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"Film is a disease. When it infects your bloodstream it takes over as the number one hormone. It bosses the enzymes, directs the pineal gland, plays Iago to your psyche. As with heroin, the antidote to Film is more Film." - Frank Capra



I just seen this thread for the first time, which is cool as I checked Sam Peckinpah's IMDB credits and he's directed a lot of great westerns....I wonder if any of these will make the Top 100 Western Countdown when we do it? These are all highly rated.

The Deadly Companions (1961)
Ride the High Country (1962)
Major Dundee (1965)
The Wild Bunch (1969)
The Ballad of Cable Hogue (1970)
Junior Bonner (1972)
Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid (1973)



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I just seen this thread for the first time, which is cool as I checked Sam Peckinpah's IMDB credits and he's directed a lot of great westerns....I wonder if any of these will make the Top 100 Western Countdown when we do it? These are all highly rated.

The Deadly Companions (1961)
Ride the High Country (1962)
Major Dundee (1965)
The Wild Bunch (1969)
The Ballad of Cable Hogue (1970)
Junior Bonner (1972)
Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid (1973)

Major Dundee is the only one I haven't seen. I would rent 6 from the library, and if I couldn't get into it within 10-15 minutes, I'd go to the next one, because of the duration of the rental. What did you think of this movie? This documentary has almost inspired me to check this out, and "The Osterman Weekend" (the other movie I didn't see of his). He's one director who is more interesting than his movies. I'd rather watch a 2-hour interview of his than say Cable Hogue or Alfredo Garcia.



Major Dundee is the only one I haven't seen. I would rent 6 from the library, and if I couldn't get into it within 10-15 minutes, I'd go to the next one, because of the duration of the rental. What did you think of this movie? This documentary has almost inspired me to check this out, and "The Osterman Weekend" (the other movie I didn't see of his). He's one director who is more interesting than his movies. I'd rather watch a 2-hour interview of his than say Cable Hogue or Alfredo Garcia.
I've only seen The Wild Bunch of his films. I'll have to work on the rest of his filmography, all his movies look interesting to me.



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I've only seen The Wild Bunch of his films. I'll have to work on the rest of his filmography, all his movies look interesting to me.
Check out "Noon Wine" - its his favorite work of his, and it might be my favorite as well. I saw it on YouTube about 2-3 years ago.



I've only seen The Wild Bunch of his films. I'll have to work on the rest of his filmography, all his movies look interesting to me.
IMO The Wild Bunch was Peckinpah's finest western. It broke lots of new territory --especially in its portrayal of violence-- and had a heavyweight veteran cast.

The Getaway was his finest non-western. Everything worked in that movie, and it rode the wave of fascinating early 1970s action films. It had an absorbing story, first rate acting (even from wooden A. McGraw) and...... great direction..

~Doc



...The Getaway was his finest non-western. Everything worked in that movie, and it rode the wave of fascinating early 1970s action films. It had an absorbing story, first rate acting (even from wooden A. McGraw) and...... great direction..~Doc
I've seen that one, it was pretty damn good. Here's what I wrote about it:

The Getaway (1972)
Director: Sam Peckinpah
Writers: Walter Hill(screenplay), Jim Thompson(novel)
Cast: Steve McQueen, Ali MacGraw, Sally Struthers, Ben Johnson
Genre: Action, Crime, Thriller
Length: 2hours 2minutes


An ex-con who's fresh out of prison, Doc McCoy (Steve McQueen) is 'asked' to pull a bank robbery by a corrupt Sheriff in exchange for paroling Doc from prison. After the heist goes bad the robbers go their separate ways. Doc teams up with his loyal wife (Ali MacGraw), and they go on the lamb from both the law and the corrupt Sheriff and his syndicate friends that planned the robbery.

This is a pretty wild movie for the time! It reminded me of an early version of Pulp Fiction, in that it has a sleazy, yet fun feel to it. Some of the scenes seemed almost like a cheesy, 70s porn movie Though nothing naughty actually happens, but it sure is eluded too. Some of the scenes with Sally Struthers doing things with the barrel of the gun and a spare rib, was pretty darn weird. But this is a PG movie so it's all done suggestively.



The Getaway
spawned a number of similar, male-female criminals, on the run type movies: Dirty Mary Crazy Larry(1974), Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974) to name a few. This was one of the first and certainly stands out by itself as being original.

Steve McQueen was the ultimate bad boy in the late 60s-70s and here he's bad to the bone. This is a quintessential role for Steve and one that he would play over and over again. McQueen has prescience, you know when he's on the screen...Usually he doesn't say much, he doesn't need to. If you've never seen him in action this is a good film to start with.

Ali MacGraw...has got to be the world's worst actress. She blows every time I've seen her and here, in The Getaway, is no exception. She just plain can't act. Strangely enough her flatly delivered lines adds to the oddly camp feeling of the movie.

On the other hand a scantly clad Sally Struthers is like a roman candle, lighting up each scene she's in. She's deliciously colorful as the bored girlfriend of a veterinarian who's been kidnapped by one of the robbers.

The Getaway is a little known gem of pseudo kink and showy violence with an all out anarchistic flair.




I've seen that one, it was pretty damn good. Here's what I wrote about it:
Nice review, bro! The Getaway is one of my favorite movies...period. McQueen had so much presence and charisma. His "Doc" suit rivals Cary Grant's suit in North by Northwest.

Wasn't Al Lettieri stunning as the gangster, Rudy Butler? I wish he'd have lived longer so we could have seen even more of his work. He was the ultimate bad guy, rivaling Richard Boone in Hombre, and Jack Palance in Shane. Remember him as Sollozzo, "The Turk" in The Godfather? He was the one that Pacino shot in the restaurant, along with Sterling Hayden. Chilling actor.

You're right about Sally Struthers. She was perfect in her role as the dentist's wife who took to the seedy side. She made quite a transition from her mousy role in All In the Family.. She sure let her weight go to hell in later years!.



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Hell of an interview.. I've always felt Sam was more interesting than his movies. I only wish people would upload some interviews on YouTube. I think there's only one (not counting the one about poker)



Sam Peckinpah 1972 Playboy Interview


https://scrapsfromtheloft.com/2017/0...nterview-1972/



Peckinpah's i've seen so far ranked & rated:

Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid


The Wild Bunch


Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia
+

The Getaway


Straw Dogs


Ride the High Country
-

Cross of Iron


This ^ poster





The Getaway

Adapted from pulp master Jim Thompson's novel by Walter Hill, The Getaway is perhaps Sam's most accessible and satisfying picture, a crowd-pleasing genre flick with a great iconic movie star turn by McQueen, a fantastic supporting cast, and just enough of Peckinpah's trademark flourishes in the action scenes and character moments to keep it interesting. It was the biggest hit, box office-wise, Sam ever had, the eighth highest grossing domestic picture of 1972. It's pretty straightforward, following a proficient bank robber bailed out of prison to pull a heist, double crossed by his employer and accomplices, then makes his way to the border while being pursued by gun-toting psychos, all with his wife in tow.



Ali MacGraw, as I said earlier, is not much of an actress, but she was certainly easy on the eyes in her day and The Getaway has to be her best performance. Her on-screen chemistry with McQueen was palpable, and while the story has them at odds for much of the picture, when the cameras weren't rolling the co-stars of course were falling in love (much to the consternation of producer, Studio boss and then-husband Robert Evans). The supporting cast was spot-on: Ben Johnson fresh off his Oscar for The Last Picture Show, Richard Bright, Bo Hopkins, Dub Taylor, Sally Struthers, Slim Pickens and the awesome Al Lettieri, the same year he rose to prominence as Sollozzo in The Godfather.



For my taste anyway it's a little too straightforwad to put it in the very top pantheon of Peckinpah's greatest cinematic achievements, but it has some terrific set pieces, especially the final battle at the hotel, and is plenty of fun. Compared to The Killer Elite and The Osterman Weekend, which were needlessly silly and contrived, it is great to see Sam groove to one that is perhaps a bit less ambitious narrative-wise but definitely delivers the goods. The 1994 remake, directed by Roger Donaldson (No Way Out, White Sands) and starring then real-life husband and wife Alec Baldwin and Kim Basinger, is often maligned, especially by Peckinpah fans. But for this admirer of Bloody Sam, I like the remake just fine (it also has a great supporting cast, including James Woods, Michael Madsen, David Morse, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Jennifer Tilly and Richard Farnsworth). Perhaps that's because I don't revere the original as a masterpiece, rather as a great artist working as a craftsman in a solid but less than amazing genre piece?





I absolutely LOVE this movie...one of my guilty pleasures



The six Peckinpah films I've seen over the years ranked:

1) Pat Garret & Billy the Kid
2) Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia
3) The Wild Bunch
4) Straw Dogs
5) The Ballad of Cable Hogue
6) Ride the High Country

The first two are absolute favorites. The others are all great as well.

As I do with most directors, I've first discovered his best films so there's only a very small chance that one of his other films will ever penetrate the top 3. I'm still very much looking forward to watching The Getaway some time in the future, though.
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The six Peckinpah films I've seen over the years ranked:

1) Pat Garret & Billy the Kid
2) Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia
3) The Wild Bunch
4) Straw Dogs
5) The Ballad of Cable Hogue
6) Ride the High Country

The first two are absolute favorites. The others are all great as well.

As I do with most directors, I've first discovered his best films so there's only a very small chance that one of his other films will ever penetrate the top 3. I'm still very much looking forward to watching The Getaway some time in the future, though.

My favorites are not on your list -- "The Getaway" and "Noon Wine" (I also like "Straw Dogs" and to a lesser extent, "Junior Bonner").