Johnny Guitar Reviews
1) Why the fuck is this called Johnny Guitar? Dude is like a tertiary character and basically meaningless in the grand scheme of things.
2) I hated how much of an evil bitch Emma was. She was just a flat out evil bitch and there was nothing else to her. You get zero acknowledgement of her as a human other than her burning hatred for men who 'make her feel like a woman' and Vienna for somehow being more of a woman than she is, while also still being called a man within the first 15 minutes of the film. That sure makes for an interesting conversation on sexuality but it doesn't really mesh with the rest of the stereotypical characters in the movie.
I liked Vienna a ton a least, she's an amazingly interesting and fresh female lead, especially for the '50s. Her relationship with Johnny is heartbreaking and honestly if they had just focused on that it almost would have been just as good of a film. However, as it is, the film focuses on the witch hunt aspect which is also interesting if not more brutally cruel. This is one of those films where the message is great but its punishing to watch, especially if you already are empathetic to the cause.
All in all, a refreshing take on a western- the likes of which you really only start to see again towards the '70s as far as I can tell.
Things really heat up when stranger Johnny Guitar rides into to town with a clear past with Vienna. Filled with great dialogue & genuine tension.
A western with a twist & this time the lady has something to settle. A unique take on the Western & really engaging film, with great characters.
one of the most adult coolest not hokey best kept secret Westerns ever...and the most fem!!!!
It was great to see more of the key elements which were replicated in Sergio Leone's Once Upon a Time In The West. The women were arguably tougher than the men in this film, and Joan Crawford's blue eyes stare through my soul.
Nearly 3 and a half stars.
*When commenting on the film, Martin Scorsese referred to this 40 or so minutes as a build up in a operatic style, bursting with emotion or some such. With these comments in mind, I would consider the first 40 minutes to be a somewhat contrived, over the top operatic-ness, fused with your typical cowboy bullshit (1950's style, chatter and face off's) (most of it one extended scene by the way.)
It is only when the flames rise that we see a true operatic nature (i am going to argue.) After this patience testing '40 minutes or so', the film moves into gear.