Spattered with blood and controversy, Sam Peckinpah's Westerns revolutionized their genre. SAM PECKINPAH'S WEST: LEGACY OF A HOLLYWOOD RENEGADE goes in search of the man behind these ... See full summary »
Spattered with blood and controversy, Sam Peckinpah's Westerns revolutionized their genre. SAM PECKINPAH'S WEST: LEGACY OF A HOLLYWOOD RENEGADE goes in search of the man behind these legendary films. Through a poignant array of film clips and rare interviews, the documentary reveals a tortured artist whose genius and demons changed the Western forever. Interviewees include actor/director Billy Bob Thornton, Benicio Del Toro, Paul Schrader, film critic Roger Ebert, actors who worked with Peckinpah such as Harry Dean Stanton, Stella Stevens, L.Q. Jones and others. The personal side of Peckinpah will feature interviews with family members, sister Fern Lee, son Mathew Peckinpah, plus exclusive home movies and photos. Written by
Heavy on the "Cable Hogue" clips and anecdotes, otherwise a fine documentary...
The westerns of filmmaker Sam Peckinpah (1925-1984) are discussed by movie critics, relatives, friends, former employees and actors. As directed by Tom Thurman for the Encore channel, and narrated by "Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid" co-star Kris Kristofferson (in his grizzled, early morning whiskey voice), this special never quite gets at what was eating at Peckinpah for the twenty years he spent behind the camera. He had his biggest commercial success with his most brutal film, 1969's "The Wild Bunch", though he preferred to quickly put that picture behind him and focus on more elegiac stories (such as "The Ballad of Cable Hogue" from 1970). Footage from a rare "Cable Hogue" documentary is used to give us a glimpse of Peckinpah in action, but this rather backfires (mostly it's footage of star Stella Stevens in various seductive poses). Peckinpah was dismayed that when he removed himself from violent on-screen action (such as with "Junior Bonner"), viewers abandoned him. He couldn't find success telling straight stories, and so eventually went back to supplying the bloodshed audiences seemed to want but critics crucified him for. Yet Peckinpah understood this helpless dichotomy better than anyone...whether or not he was able to work out his demons on film is a matter only the artist could ever answer.
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