6.8/10
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Junior Bonner (1972)

PG | | Drama, Western | 20 July 1972 (UK)
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.

Director:

Sam Peckinpah

Writer:

Jeb Rosebrook
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2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Steve McQueen ... Junior Bonner
Robert Preston ... Ace Bonner
Ida Lupino ... Elvira Bonner
Ben Johnson ... Buck Roan
Joe Don Baker ... Curly Bonner
Barbara Leigh ... Charmagne
Mary Murphy ... Ruth Bonner
Bill McKinney ... Red Terwiliger (as William McKinney)
Dub Taylor ... Del
Sandra Deel Sandra Deel ... Nurse Arlis
Don 'Red' Barry ... Homer Rutledge (as Donald Barry)
Charles H. Gray ... Burt (as Charles Gray)
Matthew Peckinpah Matthew Peckinpah ... Tim Bonner
Sundown Spencer Sundown Spencer ... Nick Bonner
Rita Garrison Rita Garrison ... Flashie
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Storyline

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

Taglines:

"Tell 'em Junior sent you" See more »

Genres:

Drama | Western

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 July 1972 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Junior Bonner See more »

Filming Locations:

Prescott, Arizona, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,200,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$1,900,000, 31 December 1972

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,800,000, 31 December 1972
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Gene Hackman was originally going to play the Joe Don Baker role, but Steve McQueen wouldn't agree to his salary demands and vetoed the casting. See more »

Goofs

During Junior's last bull ride, one of the shots shows him riding a different (smaller) bull. See more »

Quotes

Curly Bonner: Junior, you're my brother, and I guess I love you. Well, we're family. I don't care what you do. You can sell one lot or a hundred lots. I'm just tryin' to keep us together.
Junior 'JR' Bonner: I gotta go down my own road.
Curly Bonner: What road? I mean, I'm workin' on my first million, and you're still workin' on eight seconds.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Death Proof (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Rodeo Man
Words and Music by Rod Hart
Sung by Rod Hart
See more »

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User Reviews

First rate character study, superbly acted.
17 October 2001 | by InfofreakSee all my reviews

Sam Peckinpah is usually stereotyped as a director who is mainly concerned with violence and confrontation. This is only part of the picture. If you look past the violence of 'The Wild Bunch' you'll see a movie concerned with old age, loyalty and changing values. 'Straw Dogs' deals with masculinity and ethics. 'Bring Me The Head Of Alfredo Garcia' contains a vivid picture of traditional Mexican culture confronted with modern America's greed and corruption. These sub-texts and themes are often overlooked because of the blood and gore.

'Junior Bonner' leaves out the gore, and what happens? Peckinpah detractors who criticise the aforementioned movies ignore it and dismiss it as "slow" and "boring"! It is anything but. 'Junior Bonner' is a thoughtful character study of an aging rodeo performer (Steve McQueen at his best) and his relationship with his estranged family (veterans Ida Lupino and Robert Preston and character actor legend Joe Don Baker - all first rate). It moves at its own pace, which will alienate the MTV-generation, but anyone with a love of good movies will be fascinated. 'Junior Bonner' may not be as widely discussed as Peckinpah's more controversial efforts, but it's just as good in its own way, and shows once again, that he was one of THE greats of American cinema. Don't overlook this one!


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