A town Marshal, despite the disagreements of his newlywed bride and the townspeople around him, must face a gang of deadly killers alone at high noon when the gang leader, an outlaw he sent up years ago, arrives on the noon train.
It's 1913, and the "traditional" American West is dying. Amongst the inhabitants of this dying era are a gang known as "the wild bunch." After a failed railroad office robbery, the gang heads to Mexico to do one last job. Seeing their times and lives drifting away in the 20th century, the gang takes the job and ends up in a brutally violent last stand against their enemies deemed to be corrupt, in a small Mexican town ruled by a ruthless general.Written by
For the key scene in which Pike blows the bridge out from under Deke, Sam Peckinpah gave very specific instructions to special effects technician Bud Hulburd, who was no expert on dynamite but was using 50-60 sticks of it for the explosive effect. Stuntman Joe Canutt was concerned that the men on horseback could be hurt or killed if they went into the water too early before the final dynamite charge was set off. However, Hulburd refused to heed Canutt's warning, so, according to Marshall Fine in "Bloody Sam: The Life and Films of Sam Peckinpah", "Unbeknownst to Peckinpah and Hulburd, Canutt enlisted Gordon T. Dawson [in charge of the Costume & Wardrobe Department] to stand near Hulburd holding a club behind his back. Dawson's instructions from Canutt were explicit: If anyone goes into the water before Hulburd blows the right charge, hit Hulburd over the head with the club and knock him out before he can set off the last explosive. Fortunately for everyone, the sequence went off as planned. No one was accidentally blown up or clubbed over the head." See more »
According to the Internet Movie Car Database, Mapache's car is a 1914 Packard Six -- and the film's apparently set in 1913. See more »
Do not drink wine or strong drink, thou, nor thy sons with thee, least ye shall die. Look not though upon the wine when it is red, and when it bringeth his color in the cup, when it moveth itself aright at the last, it biteth like a serpent and stingeth like an adder. Now folks, that's from the Good Book, but in this here town it's five cents a glass. Five cents a glass, now does anyone think that that is a price of a drink?
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In a documentary on The Wild Bunch, it was mentioned that Sam Peckinpah prepared a version of the movie to screen for studio executives. This version seems to have disappeared, but the documentary says it was 8 hours long. See more »
Shall We Gather at the River?
Written by Robert Lowry
Played by the Temperance Union Band in the shootout at Starbuck See more »
It's wild, all right
The "old" West was changing, and director Sam Peckinpah recognized those changing times. By 1969, Sergio Leone and his "Spaghetti" westerns were the real deal, but when Peckinpah brought forth his film, "The Wild Bunch," that same year, it ushered in a whole new wave of films as its vision was simply landmark. Building on the violent stylistic template and chic of "Bonnie and Clyde" (1967), "The Wild Bunch" begins and ends with two of the bloodiest screen battles ever envisioned, and it tells the story of an aging group of outlaws, led by William Holden and Ernest Borgnine, as they attempt one last score, with Robert Ryan as an ex-Wild Bunch member in hot pursuit. They become involved with Mexican rebels and from that point on, we get an engaging story as the outlaws party with the Mexican army, their hookers, and their alcohol - all of this leading up to the notorious ending where the Wild Bunch man their guns and duke-it-out with their enemies. "The Wild Bunch" has obtained a notorious reputation for being one of the most violent movies ever made and is credited for being the movie that changed the way we looked at the "old" West and action cinema in general. Sam Peckinpah was a true revolutionary during a time when America was not so innocent, as proved by "Bonnie and Clyde" two years before it.
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