Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Western #9 - Stagecoach (1939)

Stagecoach, as it turns out, is exactly the type of movie I like. It's a very character driven, ensemble cast-style film, and that's my favorite type of story. I'm not big on the plot driven stories, hence my dislike of hard science fiction and mysteries, and I usually enjoy dialogue driven stuff, like a sixties comedy or an Aaron Sorkin work, but the character stuff is my favorite, which is why I like detective stories and The Avengers.

The plot of Stagecoach really just doesn't matter - It's about a group of people, traveling by stagecoach, moving through a dangerous part of the West. They have to move through Indian territory (It seems silly to refer to them as Native Americans if they're just going to be portrayed like that) and will probably die. The cast consists of the stagecoach driver, a Marshal for protection, an alcoholic doctor, a corrupt Republican banker, a Confederate Army veteran, a pregnant officer's wife, a "Soiled Dove," a whisky salesman, and an outlaw - That's John Wayne.

It's great. The whole story is about how the other characters relate to each other and what they learn and all the characters are great and interesting. I was actually sad when I thought one of them was dead and everything. This is John Wayne's first major movie role ever, and the first time I've seen him in everything, and I was impressed. I thought he was charming.

I really liked this movie, which is no surprise because it's the sort of movie I would normally like. I would absolutely watch it again if given the chance.

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