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Set in winter in the Old West. Charismatic but dumb John McCabe arrives in a young Pacific Northwest town to set up a whorehouse/tavern. The shrewd Mrs. Miller, a professional madam, arrives soon after construction begins. She offers to use her experience to help McCabe run his business, while sharing in the profits. The whorehouse thrives and McCabe and Mrs. Miller draw closer, despite their conflicting intelligences and philosophies. Soon, however, the mining deposits in the town attract the attention of a major corporation, which wants to buy out McCabe along with the rest. He refuses, and his decision has major repercussions for him, Mrs. Miller, and the town. Written by
John J. Magee <firstname.lastname@example.org>
McCABE & MRS. MILLER deals with several of the harsher realities of life in The Old West, and does so unflinchingly, without undue sentimentality (despite the haunting music of Leonard Cohen). Down and dirty filmmaking. Had there been documentary filmmakers roaming The Old West, they might well have shot something not unlike what Altman has wrought here. Unconventional in the extreme, McCABE & MRS. MILLER is the kind of down-to-earth western we need more of. The glamour of hard times washes right off and all that's left is a brutal, harsh reality. Superior filmmaking.
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