Monday, August 3, 2009

234) Ramrod (1947)

234) Ramrod (1947) Dir: Andre De Toth Date Released: May 1947 Date Seen: July 31st, 2009 Rating: 4/5 

Wow, wotta solid, engaging soap opera that was! See my mention of it in my forthcoming feature on the westerns and war movies of five one eyed-auteurs for The Onion's New York A.V. Club.

Note: the piece's focus changed so now Ramrod is no longer part of it. Here's what I had written before:

Andr√© De Toth’s Ramrod is more of a grand soap opera than a typical western. Joel McCrea stars as a reformed drunk who winds up biting off more than he can chew when he decides to defend Veronica Lake, a rebellious landowner that wants to introduce sheep to a territory dominated by cow ranchers. As the film’s title suggests, the men of the film struggle to assert mastery over their land, their guns and their libidos while the conniving Lake manipulates everyone for her own personal gain. De Toth’s camera tensely snakes around McCrea and his co-stars, using tracking and over-the-shoulder shots to maximize the impression of towering masculinity.

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