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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
(Some spoilers): "Walking Tall" is probably the most politically incorrect movie you will ever lay your eyes on, but you can't tear away from it if you tried. It's like a episode of "Dukes of Hazzard" directed by Brian DePalma or Quentin Tarentino. I just watched this for the first time, and some of the scenes blew me away. I particularly enjoyed 10 year old Leif Garrett walking through the crowded hospital with the shotgun, and then proceeding to load it front of a nurse, who smiled and nodded approvingly. And also the ending scene with the angry mob justice, burning the evil craps table and such. Joe Don Baker is great in the role of Buford Pusser (great freakin' name!), the ex-wrestler who goes from gently playing with his children to beating 12 men half to death with a bat in seconds. It's all portrayed in a flattering manner, however. I am now eagerly anticipating the remake with The Rock, just to see if they can come within a mile of doing some of the things they were able to back in the early 70's.
My dad knew the real life Buford Pusser, and he said that most of the flick was fairly true to life. Based on that, the movie had a bigger impact on me knowing that a good deal of what was on screen was capable of happening in the real world and had in fact occurred. You can even go to a museum (I think in Gatlinburg, TN) and see the remains of his corvette.
A raw-boned, low-budget, Hollywood-ized account of a small town sheriff battling rednecks and assorted villains in the Deep South. Today we know the real sheriff was not much like the stoic and heroic sheriff portrayed in the film, but it doesn't change the fact this flick was pretty powerful stuff in its time. The final shootout is pretty startling and the murder of the sheriff's wife proves a real tearjerker. The sequels and TV show were lame. They star a different actor (Bo Svensson) than the original (Joe Don Baker), and he is not half as good. A remake is reportedly in the works.
Walking tall 2004 is only 80 minutes long and you have to quest you're
self sometime in the movie for what happened.But this one is longer and
more enjoyable and you don't have to guess what going on because it has
more details in this on the remake.
I think that in this movie they didn't tell the real things about Bufford Pusser life.They change to many part of his life to put it in the movie. Example-Bufford Pusser studied law in the 40's at university and applied to be a police officer at a lot of stations but in the movie he just returns back home with his family and want to become the sheriff and i'm not going to tell you why because i don't want to spoil the movie for you if you already know what going to happen.
Even if they Skip a lot of parts about Buffor Pusser's life it doesn't mean its not a good movie.It is very interesting i think and anyone who didn't see should go see it.
After watching the newer version, I decided to compare. I loved walking tall when I was a kid. Remembered some of it, but a few years back I caught it on TBS late night. WOW did this film age well; nothing is better than a true story. My father, or someone I know says the movie is close too the books. Maybe that is why the story and film age well. Realism always lasts the test of time. I had to get some sleep and missed Walking Tall 2, but hope to cath it on TBS some time soon. Thank you TBS late night from all us insomnia suffers, nothing is worse than info commericals, or old re-runs. This movie is closer too the trues story so I give the new Walking Tall the old 2 by 4 and give the old version a 7 out of 10. I think the Rock could play a better bad guy.
Walking Tall lived up to every expectation I had for it, unfortunately for the filmmakers, those expectations were not too high to begin with. The story of Buford Pusser, a rural county sheriff in Tennessee, is too bizarre to believe. A point the filmmakers seem to acknowledge during the end credits by noting that certain events were fictionalized. But I shouldn't be too hard on this movie. It's violent, brutal, manipulative & simplistic. In other words, it's everything that a 70's exploitation flick is supposed to be. Bottom line: should be a good movie for a drinking game. Everytime Buford has an attempt made on his life (4) you do a shot. Everytime someone spots the boom-mic (8 times by my count) you do a shot. You get the picture. Happy drinking and enjoy the civil rights violations.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I just watched this one tonight and I am appalled at how much praise
has been laid upon the title character of Bufford Pusser. If these were
indeed the kinds of actions taken by the subject of this film, then
those are highly questionable ones.
The film is certainly well made, but it also seems to glorify violence as a way to solve a problem. Not that the answers to the problems of the town in the film easy ones.
In the process of fighting for a better life for the people, it was a war that in the end, was for not. So many die in this story, including Pusser's wife, not to mention the family pet, that they lose more than they could ever hope to gain.
Pusser's wife, played so well by Elizabeth Hartman, is really the only character who actually seemed to question her husband's actions and really exhibited any kind of intellect or thought to the possible results. If a thinking viewer is watching this film, they are going to question Pusser's actions and form the opinion that there could have been a better way then the easy way of resorting to violence.
Pusser uses a gun, torture and intimidation. The same methods used by the hoodlums to torture a naked girl. He is no better... a moral cripple.
And this seems to have been the American way for decades. That might makes right and that we are the "good guys". This is shameful behavior and to reward it as heroic is moral bankruptcy.
Baker is good as Pusser and the film keeps you glued to your seat. The only failure of the film is the lack of presenting an opposing viewpoint. That violence doesn't solve anything. Is the small town in this film all "perfect" today? The scene where Leif Garrett is sitting next to his father's hospital bed with a rifle in his lap was definitely a face palm moment. America continues to be a violent nation because it teaches their young that such actions are "heroic". A very sad commentary on a nation that could hold so much more promise.
A strong film that should really have elicited more controversy and criticism of the title character's actions.
I don't know if anyone else has commented on this, but this film must
set the record for misplaced "boom" or microphone intrusions into the
visible frame. What kind of drugs were the crew on while making this
movie? Didn't they notice these howlers during the daily rushes and
editing of the movie? It happens so much throughout the film its really
laughable, and certainly gives it a B movie feeling. However, there
were A list actors in the movie.
Thats why this negligence seems so out of place. Anyway, I still enjoyed the movie, even though it seemed a little hokey, far fetched and simplistic.
Good, straightforward, violent entertainment.
I liked the movie so much that I copied them and they are in my personal collection. This country needs more men like Bufford Pusser, men that will back up what they say and to hell with the consequences. Basically, men that don't back down and have the guts to do the right thing. Unfortunately, there are not enough men in this country that will do that, because they are worried about "offending someone". They are worried about being "politically correct" I myself, have worn out the tape a few times and keep replacing it because when I lose faith in society, I watch Bufford in action and am relieved and hope more people will take an interest and stand up for themselves. It takes a big man to swing a stick like that.
Walking Tall (1973) is a classic example of white-exploitation flicks
that were very popular during the 70's. Joe Don Baker stars as Buford
Pusser, a former pro wrestler who comes back to his home town and finds
how much it has change. One day he goes off with an old childhood
friend who takes him to a mobile home casino. It's there he discovers
how depraved the city and the surrounding area has become. Under the
thumb of a local Southern Mob. After a terrible beating, Buford decides
enough is enough and tries to make a difference.
Joe Don Baker is one bad dude and is perfect as Buford Pusser. The rest of the cast is adequate as well. This movie promises brutal bare fisted action and it delivers. A no holds barred type of flick. If you like this type of films then watching Walking Tall is a no brainer. Go out and get yourself a copy!
Stay away from the remake!
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