In the Wild Bunch the movie opens with a group of aging outlaw's final score, a bank robbery. The event concludes with a violent and overtly bloody shootout that would generally mark the finale of a movie. This is correct in that it marks the finale of an era, for the characters and the world they live in. They simply can no longer keep up, the times are changing, technology advancing, and they're style of life is getting left behind in the dust that they spent so long galloping through. They abandon their careers for the simpler life of retirement. They enjoy this time, they live their fantasies. During this time the law is always on their tracks, bounty hunters. The further into their fantasy they get, the closer their demise seems to get. When one of their own is captured they are faced with the choice of escape or what is certainly a suicide mission to attempt and free their fallen behind comrade. For them it is not a choice. They all die in what can only be described as a ... Written by
In an interview, Ben Johnson said that the Mexican women who "frolicked" with him and Warren Oates in the huge wine vats weren't actresses but prostitutes from a nearby brothel, who were hired by Sam Peckinpah so he could tell people that Warner Bros. paid for hookers for his cast. See more »
In the scene in which Angel shoots his girlfriend, and the Wild Bunch is confronted by Gen. Mapache's men, Commander Mohr asks them about their weapons, and informs them that they are U.S. Army weapons and cannot be owned by civilians. However, the only U.S. Army weapons which they possess are M1911 Colt pistols, which in fact had been sold commercially since 1911, two years before this film takes place. See more »
Do not drink wine or strong drink, thou, nor thy sons with thee, least ye shall die. Look not though upon the wine when it is red, and when it bringeth his color in the cup, when it moveth itself aright at the last, it biteth like a serpent and stingeth like an adder. Now folks, that's from the Good Book, but in this here town it's five cents a glass. Five cents a glass, now does anyone think that that is a price of a drink?
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The Western was a staple of the movie industry from it's earliest beginnings until they started to fade from popularity by in the 60's and were becoming increasingly rare by decades end. They never really died of course but good ones became far and few between. This is one the most extravagantly violent shoot-em-up western's ever made. director Sam Peckinpaugh seeing they might be on their way out wanted them to go out with a bang in his film The Wild Bunch. A great ensemble cast here includes William Holden, Ernest Borginine, Robert Ryan, Edmund O' Brien, and Warren Oates with great character actors Strother Martin, Ben Johnson and Dub Taylor. Veteran cinematographer Lucien Ballard who would have a 55 year career as at his best here. Versatile art director ed Carrere worked on his final film in The Wild Bunch and Lou Lombardo who was given the complicated job of film editing this movie turned out a fine product. It received two Academy Award nominations for music, and screenplay but should have received more and especially for sound. May be to overboard on violence for some but I would give this epic western a 9.0 out of 10 and recommend it.
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