Sunday, July 19, 2009

Uplift For An Otherwise Dreary Sunday...Magnificent Montage

Eli Wallach said he'd take the role if he could work with it. He bought a red silk shirt and found a silver saddle horn in the prop department, things he felt would show how a man such as Tuco would spend his money. Steve McQueen was always doing something, anything, while in the background, drawing the audiences eyes to him no matter what else was going on. Yul Brenner practiced then practiced some more to become a fast draw, only to be constantly out-drawn by McQueen during rehearsals, so he'd go back to his trailer on it again and again. The main difference between this movie and any of the Japanese Samurai flicks then and now is the simple fact that there were, and are, plenty of men as fast and proficient with firearms but damned few Asians capable of flying in and out of trees, tiptoeing across bodies of water, and/or balancing on nothing but thin air. The Magnificent Seven is all about what happens when honor and art reside in the same individual, taking it all in in not a little bit of awe as he unleashes both, to do what lesser men only dream of.

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