A young man who doesn't find a job in his small hometown, tries his luck in New York, but is overwelmed by the life of the city, so decides to try his luck somewhere else after a only a few minutes in New York. He falls off a train near a ranch, where he tries his luck as a cowbowy, being in his own way very sucessful. But he shows what he can do when the farm has to bring a 100 head of cattle to the slaughterhouses of Los Angeles to avoid going bankrupt, against the will of his neighbour who wants a better price. After a shoot-out with the neighbour's men he's the only person on a Los Angeles bound train with 1000 cows.... Written by
Stephan Eichenberg <firstname.lastname@example.org>
"Go West" is an enjoyable change-of-pace from Keaton. It has a creative story that enables Buster to demonstrate some different acting skills, while still having plenty of his trademark slapstick, chases, and stunts, especially in the last half of the film. It's not one of his best-remembered films today, largely because it is rather old-fashioned and sometimes slow, but it has a great many merits for those who enjoy silent comedies.
Buster's character is down on his luck, and decides to head west. He winds up on a ranch, working as a cowhand. As he tries rather ineffectively to learn the trade, he becomes attached to a particular cow, 'Brown Eyes'. While trying to protect Brown Eyes from harm, he is caught in the middle of the desperate attempts of the rancher and the rancher's daughter to save their business. Keaton is very good in evoking sympathy for his character while still being amusing, and the story is touching at times while remaining pleasantly silly at others. There are times when it does move pretty slowly, but it is always pleasant to watch.
The film would be well worth seeing for the last portion alone. Everything comes together in a madcap stampede sequence that is extremely funny and that contains a lot of inventive gags. It's classic Keaton, and a great way to top off a rather different story.
If you are a fan of Buster or of silent comedy in general, make sure to give this one a try. It's not the kind of film that could be expected to attract a wide audience today, but it's a pleasant and enjoyable film, and you might like it as much as those of us on this page have enjoyed it.
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