22 September 2009

Silver Screen

Those with a taste for Western potboilers could do worse than Nicholas Ray's Johnny Guitar from 1954.  Sterling Hayden stars as the musically inclined former gunslinger who reunites with his old flame, Vienna, played with scenery-chewing gusto by Joan Crawford.  

Yes, the great diva, in all her ghastliness, as a gun-toting, tough-talking saloon owner in the Old West.  Could there be anything stranger?

The movie's long on overheated dialog -- plenty of bellowing from the likes of Ward Bond and Ernest Borgnine and Mercedes McCambridge who (Robert Osborne informs) detested Her Crawfordness.  And in their scenes together, it's pretty clear neither had much use for the other.

Campy good fun.

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