The Big Country (1958)

 big country[Buck Hannassey is about to shoot the weaponless James McKay until Buck’s father intercedes] “You don’t shoot an unarmed man… not while I’m around.” – Rufus Hennesey

Number of Times Seen – 1  (28 Mar 2014)

Brief Synopsis – A New Englander travels to the west to marry his intended bride and gets mixed up in a feud between two warring families.

My Take on it – This was not an easy movie to watch because it moves so slowly, but the cinematography is spectacular.

William Wyler filmed an amazing portrait of how the West use to be with his camera, but the story is lacking.

The cast is excellent here and is led by Gregory Peck (who also Produced this movie), Charleton Heston, Jean Simmons, Carrol Baker and Burl Ives (who won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his role.

Only after I watched this movie, did I learn that this movie was an allegory of the Cold War and looking back and contemplating that fact, I see this movie in a different light.

I now understand why this was President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s favorite Western and why he showed it in the White House numerous times.

The problem is that had I not read that information, I would never have guessed that this movie represented “recent” events.

Due to this fact, this movie seems very dated and was probably enjoyed much more back when it came out in the late 50’s that it could be now.

Bottom Line – Very dated movie because of its allegorical nature.  Very good cast.  Was probably received much better in the late 1950’s

Rating – BAFTA Worthy


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6 thoughts on “The Big Country (1958)

  1. Pingback: Oscar Best Acting Winners | MovieRob

    • Thanks Alex. I wanted to like it more, but I knew I was missing something the whole time because it just didn’t add up well. Maybe one day, I’ll rewatch it and appreciate it differently!


  2. Pingback: Movies Reviewed Index A-Z | MovieRob

  3. Pingback: Did They Get it Right? – Best Supporting Actor – Oscars 1958 |

  4. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1958 | MovieRob

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