Thursday, August 9, 2012

Western #10 - Cat Ballou (1965)

I have never heard of Cat Ballou before, and I frankly think that's a terrible crime. It isn't actually a straight western - it's a parody. It's sort of like Blazing Saddles a little bit, except not really. It's got Jane Fonda and Lee Martin in it and it's awesome. I really can't  believe that this isn't a cult classic. I feel like people everywhere should have been telling me to watch Cat Ballou from the very beginning. I'm mystified by this movie's relative obscurity.

Jane Fonda plays an outlaw, since her father got killed because he wouldn't give up his land and Lee Martin is a drunken washed-up gunslinger. They also have a gang including a farm hand, a sex maniac, and an uncle. And the best horse actor in history. It all comes together very well for me. Largely, it's very funny.

Probably the most memorable part of this movie is the Greek Chorus, played by Nat "King" Cole and Stubby Kay. They stand around and play banjos and sing directly into the camera about what's going on. It's awesome. I admittedly first saw this referenced on an episode of Hannah Montana, and had no idea what it was supposed to be at the time, but now it's obvious. They really make the movie for me, actually. Something about their presence makes the movie rise up from its 60's-style slapstick and be remembered.

No comments:

Post a Comment