53 user 29 critic

Junior Bonner (1972)

PG | | Drama, Western | 2 August 1972 (USA)
Ace Bonner returns to Arizona several years after he abandoned his family, Junior Bonner is a wild young man. Against the typical rodeo championship, family drama erupts.




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2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ace Bonner
Elvira Bonner
Buck Roan
Curly Bonner
Ruth Bonner
Red Terwiliger (as William McKinney)
Sandra Deel ...
Nurse Arlis
Homer Rutledge (as Donald Barry)
Charles H. Gray ...
Burt (as Charles Gray)
Matthew Peckinpah ...
Tim Bonner
Sundown Spencer ...
Nick Bonner
Rita Garrison ...


A week with Junior Bonner, a rodeo pro on the wrong side of 40, broke, bruised, and headed into Prescott, his home town, for the annual 4th of July Frontier Days. His dad, Ace, is a dissolute dreamer fixed on finding gold in Australia; his mom is resigned to Ace's roving; his brother Curly is tearing up the countryside to make a million in real estate. Junior just wants to stay on a bucking Brahma for eight seconds, hang out with Ace, find a way to spend time with a beautiful woman whose eyes catch his, and earn enough to get to next week's rodeo. As the old West and its code give way to progress, Junior is lonesome, laconic, and on the road - just where he wants to be. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


"Tell 'em Junior sent you" See more »


Drama | Western


PG | See all certifications »




Release Date:

2 August 1972 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Šampion rodea  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$3,200,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Sam Peckinpah: for one fleeting shot, passing through the Palace Bar in the film. He appears immediately after Barbara Leigh's friend asks for "Three double bourbons" just before Steve McQueen asks her to dance. See more »


While they are sitting on the bench having a drink, Ace knocks Junior's hat off. The view from the rear shows the hat on the ground beside Junior, but when Aces gets up and picks up the hat, it is a few feet in front on Junior. See more »


Junior 'JR' Bonner: Didn't you always save the first dance for mom, Ace?
Curly Bonner: That's a good idea, Ace.
Elvira Bonner: Boys, times have changed. I changed them.
See more »


Referenced in Grindhouse (2007) See more »


Arizona Morning
Words and Music by Rod Hart
Sung by Rod Hart
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User Reviews

A gem of a film
25 August 2002 | by (Colorado) – See all my reviews

I grew up with these people, and watched, with them, the end of the mythic West and the beginning of traffic-clogged urban West. When Junior watches the bulldozers flattening the old ranch, I can empathise completely.

This is a melancholy film, superbly acted (everyone was completely authentic in the movie), and a tragic document of the West as it once was, when there were stll heroic bull riders and classic vistas unpolluted by smog.

13 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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