U.S. President Richard Nixon
commented on the film during a press conference in Denver, Colorado, on 3 August 1970. In doing so, he used the film as a context to explain his views on law and order:
"Over the last weekend I saw a movie-I don't see too many movies but I try to see them on weekends when I am at the Western White House or in Florida--and the movie that I selected, or, as a matter of fact, my daughter Tricia selected it, was Chisum
(1970) with John Wayne
. It was a western. And as I looked at that movie, I said, "Well, it was a very good western, John Wayne
is a very fine actor and it was: a fine supporting cast. But it was just basically another western, far better than average movies, better than average westerns."
I wondered why it is that the western survives year after year after year. A good western will outdraw some of the other subjects. Perhaps one of the reasons, in addition to the excitement, the gun play, and the rest, which perhaps is part of it but they can get that in other kinds of movies but one of the reasons is, perhaps, and this may be a square observation-is that the good guys come out ahead in the westerns; the bad guys lose.
In the end, as this movie particularly pointed out, even in the old West, the time before New Mexico was a State, there was a time when there was no law. But the law eventually came, and the law was important from the standpoint of not only prosecuting the guilty, but also seeing that those who were guilty had a proper trial". See more
John Simpson Chisum
We may have to be neighbors, but I don't have to be neighborly.