By Raymond Benson
I never had a chance to see these two legendary westerns that were made back-to-back in the mid-1960s, presented by Roger Corman, directed and co-produced by Monte Hellman, and starring a young Jack Nicholson (among others), for they were elusive. I’d heard they were quirky, moody, and very different takes on the western genre, so I was excited to hear that The Criterion Collection was releasing both pictures as a double-bill on one Blu-ray disc. Now you, too, can view these strange little movies in all of their high definition glory.
Hellman was one of the few directors that producer Corman would let helm pictures for his studio, which at that time was famous for low-budget horror films, youth-in-rebellion pictures, and, later, rock ‘n’ roll counterculture flicks. Jack Nicholson was also involved with Corman since the late fifties,