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Features Four Frames

Duplicitous Games in Donald Siegel’s The Beguiled

In 1971, three films with Clint Eastwood were released within eight months: the actor’s directorial début Play Misty for Me and two films directed by Don Siegel – The Beguiled and Dirty Harry. The last confirmed Eastwood’s screen persona as the violent loner and law enforcer whereas the two other films challenged it as Siegel’s […]

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Features Four Frames

The escape motif in Clint Eastwood’s Unforgiven

Clint Eastwood’s Unforgiven (1992), set in 1881, is a complex film about violence in American history and, by extension, in present-day America. It also presents multifaceted reflections on human nature and the construction of legends. William Munny (Eastwood), a former gunfighter and notorious killer, is now a pig farmer in Kansas. In the opening credits […]

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Fashion & Film Features

The Enduring Allure of the West and of the Western Style

The great frontier always drew dreamers. I am not an American, but I am a dreamer. And I’ve always considered the Western as one of the greatest adventure movies. Capturing the adventurous spirit, the making it on your own, and an ethic and style that are eternal. That’s what a cowboy embodies. Someone with a […]

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Features Thousand Words

Thousand Words: A Journey into the Heart of Frontier America (The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada, 2005)

Rancher Pete Perkins (Tommy Lee Jones) kidnaps Mike Norton (Barry Pepper), a young officer of the U.S. Border Patrol, who accidentally shot Perkins’ Mexican friend Melquiades Estrada (Julio Cedillo) and quickly buried the body without reporting the death. The body was discovered, identified and reburied in a cemetery, but the local sheriff did not investigate […]

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Features Four Frames Uncategorized

Four Frames: The Wild Bunch (Sam Peckinpah, 1969)

Proverbs 3:31: “Envy thou not the oppressor, and choose none of his ways.” To die for a righteous cause is one thing, but to die just for the hell of it is another. To somehow do both at the same time is pure Sam Peckinpah. The life and film-making of Bloody Sam are full of […]

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Features Screengems

Screengems: Rooster Cogburn’s Colt Navy Sixes in True Grit (Joel & Ethan Coen, 2010)

There is surely something of the War on Terror in the Coen brothers’ big screen version of the 1968 Charles Portis novel, True Grit. This enduring Western tale – already filmed, with John Wayne as US Marshal Reuben “Rooster” Cogburn, in 1969 – follows a manhunt in late 19th Century Arkansas and Oklahoma, a quest […]