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Old February 25 2013, 05:55 AM   #16
Harvey
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

Setting 1820-1900 as your limit excludes The Wild Bunch, set in 1913. The "American West," of course, is a vague and contested term. And even if you include the entirety of North America under the umbrella of the "West," you'll exclude plenty of terrific films like The Proposition and Outland.

(Okay, that last one is more of a guilty pleasure.)
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Old February 25 2013, 12:57 PM   #17
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

Harvey wrote: View Post
That survey of historians I mentioned is discussed here: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4519496 (it turns out it also surveyed western fiction writers and magazine editors and publishers). It was conducted in 1992.

In your earlier post you implied that the films and television you named weren't Westerns because of their geographic setting. In other words, they weren't Westerns because they didn't take place in the "West." This assumes that the "West" can be easily and rigidly defined. The '92 study shows that even the experts are unable of consensus on such a definition.

Now you are claiming -- I think -- that genre is entirely linked to story, suggesting that The Jetsons be excluded from science fiction because it is modeled after family sitcoms. That seems to contradict your original point, no?
The Turner thesis is wrong, something best exemplified by a comparison of US westward expansion with Russian expansion eastward, I think. The supposed controversy isn't much more serious than the controversy between evolutionism and intelligent design in biology. Worse, in literary and cinematic terms, the equivalent of the Turnerian process discussed in the link is exactly what I was talking about. Namely, what kind of narrative structure underlies the alleged Western genre?

Turner's narrative thesis for US history boils down to being a man's man on the frontier made the US a nation of men, who were naturally free. (Turnerians would likely wince at such bluntness.) Are you suggesting that this is the basic story structure of the Western?

Regardless of whether you are able to answer such a simple question, you have misinterpreted a couple of things. First, a fluid definition of the is not the same thing as a completely formless definition. Movies can be in debatable frontier. For instance, The Wild Bunch is set in 1913, not 1915. Would two years make such a difference? Yes, at least for everyone who knew that the US was engaged in WWI. The makers knew that setting was a key, if not the key to defining the Western.

Citing this one is a little odd, because a movie in some respects about the loss of the Old West had by its nature had to be set sometime when the Old West was gone but close enough that old men could have failed to realize it. And insofar as The Wild Bunch was about the nonexistence of the legend of the West, it had to be set close to another period so that its characters wouldn't appear anachronistic in light of expectations about Westerns.

Remarks on The Jetsons are similarly inept. Of course The Jetsons is scifi, and I never said otherwise. The subordinate clause may be subordinate but still counts towards the meaning of the sentence. To rephrase, it's not enough to note that The Jetsons uses scifi tropes. That doesn't tell us anything significant about the show. The fact that ii's modeled on The Honeymooners does.

Lastly, you still haven't made a point, which leads me to suspect that you agree that "Westerns" are hicks flicks, but find that impolitic to admit.

jefferiestubes8 wrote: View Post
See the wiki
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_(genre)

Under themes
And characteristics
to clarify...

I think most people know a western has horses and is set in american west between 1820-1900.
That link doesn't work for me. As for your definition, of course it needs to be applied with an appropriate fluidity of judgment about geography and chronology. But, yes, that does seem to be the core. There is such a bewildering array of true genres that it is hard to know what else you can point to as an identifier.

Christopher wrote: View Post
jefferiestubes8 wrote: View Post
I think most people know a western has horses and is set in american west between 1820-1900.
Or is set in a different place and time and emulates the tropes of the Western genre, such as Outland or the cartoon BraveStarr.
Tropes are very superficial. Outland may have taken a plot from High Noon but its corporate villains were very different thematically. I believe it is obtuse to think otherwise. Insisting on judging everything by its outward appearance only is equivalent to rejuecting the very concept of criticism, I think. That is your privilege, but it doesn't follow that you therefore have anything to contribute to an attempt to analyze the Western.
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Old February 25 2013, 06:21 PM   #18
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

Christopher wrote: View Post
jefferiestubes8 wrote: View Post
I think most people know a western has horses and is set in american west between 1820-1900.
Or is set in a different place and time and emulates the tropes of the Western genre, such as Outland or the cartoon BraveStarr.
Heck, I even think of the 2006 NYC-set thriller 16 Blocks as a sort of Western.

And don't forget Once Upon a Time in Mexico!


And flandry84, I agree: "Adam Sandler comedy Western" sounds like the pre-conception murder of humor, Terminator 1-style.
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Old February 25 2013, 06:45 PM   #19
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

Thanks for that post, stj. It's nice to be reminded that debating you is a senseless and masochistic exercise. You can presume whatever you'd like about me, but I am not going to engage with you any longer.
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Old February 25 2013, 07:06 PM   #20
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

^^^^You haven't engaged yet, since your inept quibbles don't count. Please do explain what you deem the useful sense of the term Western genre. Your suggestion that it's not strongly linked to geographical suggestion is far, far too meaningless to be useful, after all. I am so interested to know what you could possibly be thinking that I won't even comment, unless positively.
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Old February 25 2013, 07:19 PM   #21
J.T.B.
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

Harvey wrote: View Post
Thanks for that post, stj. It's nice to be reminded that debating you is a senseless and masochistic exercise. You can presume whatever you'd like about me, but I am not going to engage with you any longer.
Ain't that the truth. He has a lot to say about Westerns as a genre, but doesn't seem to have seen a lot of the actual movies.
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Old February 26 2013, 01:06 AM   #22
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

^^^Still saw enough of them to know you frequently misreport, distort and generally screw up simple descriptions.

But don't be bashful, limiting yourself to a random drive-by potshot. Be brave, explain to us how Justified and Hatfields & McCoys and Django Unchained are Westerns. If it makes you bolder, I won't respond to your post either.
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Old February 26 2013, 03:09 PM   #23
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

stj wrote: View Post
^^^Still saw enough of them to know you frequently misreport, distort and generally screw up simple descriptions.
And this from the guy who posted such off-base stuff as:
  • Henry Fonda was the hero in She Wore a Yellow Ribbon
  • There are rarely Union Civil War veterans as heroes in Westerns
  • Major Dundee wasn't the hero in Major Dundee
  • Wild Bill Hickock's wartime service was never dealt with in a move
  • Vera Cruz was racist because the Gary Cooper character was a former Confederate
  • Duel in the Sun was racist in its treatment of the Pearl character

I think informed readers can make up their minds about who knows what they are talking about.

stj wrote: View Post
But don't be bashful, limiting yourself to a random drive-by potshot. Be brave, explain to us how Justified and Hatfields & McCoys and Django Unchained are Westerns. If it makes you bolder, I won't respond to your post either.
No thanks.

Last edited by J.T.B.; February 26 2013 at 03:23 PM.
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Old February 27 2013, 09:47 AM   #24
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

To reply to an earlier point-that the corporate thugs in Outland have no precedent in the traditional western.
Nonesense.
What were the Pinkerton men in The Long riders?
Frank Morgan(Henry Fonda)in Once upon a time in the west.
The railroads hired killers in Mc Cabe & Mrs.Miller.
And to further stretch the genre,the corporate killers in Matewan.
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Old February 27 2013, 01:28 PM   #25
stj
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

flandry84 wrote: View Post
To reply to an earlier point-that the corporate thugs in Outland have no precedent in the traditional western.
Nonesense.
What were the Pinkerton men in The Long riders?
Frank Morgan(Henry Fonda)in Once upon a time in the west.
The railroads hired killers in Mc Cabe & Mrs.Miller.
And to further stretch the genre,the corporate killers in Matewan.
The corporation's use of drugs to quell the workers is wholly unlike the traditional Western. But it is interesting to note that McCabe & Mrs. Miller is very much not a traditional Western, self-refuting the argument. And even this poster has to admit that Matewan is a stretch. If you try to argue that an opinion is nonsense, you really have to do better than this. It is far better not to go to J.T.B.'s school of misrepresentation and irrelevance.

It's not a hard question: In what "useful" sense are Justified and Hatfields & McCoys and Django Unchained Westerns?
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Old February 27 2013, 03:35 PM   #26
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

stj wrote: View Post
It is far better not to go to J.T.B.'s school of misrepresentation and irrelevance.
Right, right, because I've called out your glaring inaccuracies and can actually back it up. As opposed to generalized declamations and, in the absence of something substantive, personal baiting as shown above. Which indicates to me that you don't really care so much about watching and discussing Westerns as scoring points in furtherance of some personal agenda. Have fun.
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Old February 28 2013, 05:43 PM   #27
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

You've never successfully backed up anything you've argued against me. Also you have misrepresented what I've said, except for my assertion that Wild Bill Hickock is not portrayed as a Union veteran. But if you think coming up with movie that does treat his service compares to its absence in so many movies were Hickock has a part is more than a quibble? Your humiliation at being refuted has led you into error.

But the racial subtext in the traditional Western, the issue that really has you so angry you can't think straight, is not the topic in this thread. You only came in to pursue a cheap revenge at being whipped on that topic. But, put aside your wounded vanity, take a genuine revenge by high-mindedly answering the question that somehow provoked such mindless but mean-spirited posts: In what useful sense are Justified, and Hatfields & McCoys, and Django Unchained Westerns? Aside from being hicks flicks, that is?

(By the way, the topic of race in traditional Westerns is not necessarily resolved in my favor, as a more discerning poster might be able to make valid arguments, unlike you.)
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Old February 28 2013, 07:35 PM   #28
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

Wtth respect STJ(or at least more than you have shown anyone)I still don't understand your argument.
Just what are the criteria you accept in defining a western?
Locale,time or theme?
Locale(by strict definitions)would exclude movies like Coogan's bluff,Last of the mohicans,Hell even The Magnificent 7 which doesn't even take place in America.Is Texas south or west?
Time-no Lonely are the brave,HI-LO country,Brokeback mountain.
Theme-well define that one first.Is Justified out because it is a crime driven show?Half the western movies I have seen feature Sheriffs ,outlaws and much more.
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Old February 28 2013, 10:49 PM   #29
J.T.B.
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

stj wrote: View Post
You've never successfully backed up anything you've argued against me. Also you have misrepresented what I've said, except for my assertion that Wild Bill Hickock is not portrayed as a Union veteran. But if you think coming up with movie that does treat his service compares to its absence in so many movies were Hickock has a part is more than a quibble? Your humiliation at being refuted has led you into error.
That's moving the goal post, because the statement I was responding to was not about proportion, but that Hickock being a Union veteran was "never" part of a film about him. I thought someone well versed in the history of Westerns might be passing familiar with The Plainsman, which was so formative for the Hickock/Calamity Jane myth, and remember Gary Cooper waiting for a riverboat in his soldier blue.

As for the rest of it, it's still there for all to see. Generalized and non-specific. Notably, the "classic western" on which so much of the argument depends, is never defined:
http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=120592

But instead of telling everyone how inaccurate and inept I am, go ahead and show them. Expand on your comments about Henry Fonda in She Wore A Yellow Ribbon (a film in which he does not appear). Or the racism in Vera Cruz. Or Duel in the Sun. Quote a line, cite a scene.

But the racial subtext in the traditional Western, the issue that really has you so angry you can't think straight, is not the topic in this thread. You only came in to pursue a cheap revenge at being whipped on that topic.
No, I came in to agree with Harvey, that arguing with you is pointless. Which is obviously correct unless someone enjoys being personally badgered. And I think it's obvious from the language displayed here who is angry.

I don't disagree with all the racial subtext claims, just the simplistic and over-broad assertion that that was the factor that ended Westerns' mainstream popularity. And some claims about specific movies which are wrong.

But, put aside your wounded vanity, take a genuine revenge by high-mindedly answering the question that somehow provoked such mindless but mean-spirited posts: In what useful sense are Justified, and Hatfields & McCoys, and Django Unchained Westerns? Aside from being hicks flicks, that is?
Your assumption of the position I would take is wrong.

(By the way, the topic of race in traditional Westerns is not necessarily resolved in my favor, as a more discerning poster might be able to make valid arguments, unlike you.)
You were saying something about "mean-spirited"?
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Old February 28 2013, 11:14 PM   #30
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Re: Western genre feature film resurgence 2010-2015

flandry84 wrote: View Post
Is Texas south or west?
Both
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