Rooster Cogburn (1975) Poster

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See it for the actors
gee-1515 February 2000
This is one of a few movies that I can watch over and over again and still enjoy. That said, it's also my favourite Western. (And I'm not a big fan of the genre.)

The story is simple. Cogburn (Wayne) is tracking down a load of nitro stolen by Hawk (Jordan)and his gang. As the gang of outlaws bid a hasty retreat, they stumble upon Eula (Hepburn), her minister father, and several Indians including a teen-aged boy named Wolf.

The plot is simple and had their characters been played by any other actors besides Wayne and Hepburn, the film would have been mediocre at best. Their performances make the film shine. Every scene they have together crackles with chemistry. When Wayne says to Hepburn, "being with you pleases me", I got the feeling he meant it and that Hepburn received the compliment with genuine pleasure. Well, maybe it's just good acting.

In any event, the film is a nice way to pass some time for those unfamiliar with Wayne or Westerns and a must-see for all Wayne and Hepburn fans.
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The Same Sense of Integrity
bkoganbing5 April 2006
A reading of the other reviews of Rooster Cogburn indicate that only fans of the two stars should look at this film. That's not saying a whole lot since this was a vehicle created for the two stars and only the two stars in this film could have brought it off.

It was a happy marriage of convenience with John Wayne's character of Rooster Cogburn from True Grit being so popular that a sequel was inevitable given Wayne's health holding up and Katharine Hepburn looking for something she could co-star with Wayne.

Hepburn was one of John Wayne's biggest boosters of his talent, politics aside. I remember reading that she thought John Wayne projected the same sense of integrity that Spencer Tracy did on the screen. Coming from her, I've got to believe that's the best compliment she could offer.

Wayne as Cogburn is on the trail of a gang that massacred an army patrol and stole a gatling gun and nitroglycerin for use in a planned bank robbery. The gang headed by Richard Jordan with Anthony Zerbe who used to scout for Wayne go to an Indian settlement with a missionary school headed by father and daughter preacher and teacher Jon Lormer and Katharine Hepburn. The gang shoots up the place and kills Lormer.

When Wayne comes he gets a lot more than he bargained for when he finds himself saddled with Hepburn and young Indian boy Richard Romancito. They accompany him on the trail of Jordan and his gang and get enough adventure to last a lifetime.

Everyone compares Hepburn as Eula Goodnight to her portrayal of another missionary, Rose Sayer in The African Queen. Both are on a chase in The African Queen with Bogey after the Germans who destroyed the mission in East Africa and killed her brother and with Wayne after some outlaws. And both films feature a very fine sequence of the two stars riding some rapids. But I think Eula Goodnight is a far more experienced woman of the world than Rose Sayer. Both disapprove of the alcoholic behavior of their male counterparts. Rose however takes some direct action.

As the film was designed around the two stars they settle comfortably in their roles. The chemistry between them is infectious, that they liked each other would be obvious to an alien from another planet.

I really envy young Richard Romancito to be in all those scenes and be able to watch a pair of screen legends.
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A great movie starring two legends and two great character actors
Kim-6816 February 1999
This movie is a lot of fun to watch. John Wayne and Katharine Hepburn are terrific together. You can see the chemistry between them. Richard Jordan does a terrific job as the villain, he is mean, nasty and downright awful! I definitely wouldn't want to get him mad. The scene between him and Katharine Hepburn at Fort Ruby was awesome, you could see the sparks flying. Then there was the scene where the wheel broke off the wagon and Hawk gets furious with his men, Jordan did a great job with that part, talk about angry, if looks could kill, his would, it gave me shivers. Anthony Zerbe also does a great job as Breed. The two of them, Jordan and Zerbe are great together. Like one scene in the saloon when Hawk learns about the wagon being taken by Rooster, he starts to go out when Breed tells him, that he will never take Rooster and that he had worked with him for three years, you can see the daggers between the two. They are definitely two of the best character actors ever. They don't make movies like this anymore, where it was up to the actors to make a film a success and not rely on special affects. And these four actors did this brilliantly. I wish John Wayne and Richard Jordan were still around today.
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... or "The African Queen" out West
Martin Bradley23 April 2006
Someone in Hollywood had the bright idea of taking the leading character from "True Grit" and putting him in a story redolent of "The African Queen", casting a much older Katharine Hepburn, then experiencing a revival in her career, in the same part she played opposite Bogie. And it worked. If anything Wayne, with an unerring ear for the comic potential of his character, is even better than he was in "True Grit". It's a genuinely funny performance. Hepburn's character is too much an amalgam of Rose Sayer and Mattie Ross; she could be "True Grit's" Mattie 50 years on. But the chemistry between her and Wayne is palpable; they spark off each other.

The plot isn't up to much. It's been cobbled together from scraps of better movies and there is a terrible bit of over-acting from Richard Jordan as the chief villain, but it looks great, (the scenery is terrific), and is very enjoyable.
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Better than True Grit
C.K. Dexter Haven18 September 2006
Don't get me wrong, True Grit is a good western and worthy of its classic status, but I've always found John Wayne's first go round as Rooster Cogburn to be uneven, at times colorfully into character but just as often just playing John Wayne. He won his only Oscar for it of course, but he hadn't yet completely found ol' Rooster's voice.

In this sequel co starring Katharine Hepburn, the Duke has every aspect of Rooster down pat. The scenes he and Hepburn share, trading their philosophies and anecdotes while they come to know and admire (and platonically fall in love with) each other is the engine of this film. Forget the plot, it's passable enough but very much secondary, this story gets along strictly on the strength of the two lead characters and it's worth seeing again and again just to watch these two Hollywood legends banter and spar in their one and only movie together.

This was the first John Wayne film I ever saw in a movie theatre (I was 9 years old in 1975) and it made me a lifelong fan. This is easily one of his most entertaining adventures. Hepburn and Wayne together is even more fun than Bogart and Hepburn in The African Queen. A timeless treasure.
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John Wayne and Katharine Hepburn are brilliant and sublime
ma-cortes22 June 2004
The couple Wayne and Hepburn or Hepburn and Wayne are top notch , both of whom are wonderful . The film is a first-rate western , is the following-up to ¨True grit" in which Wayne won an Oscar , Academy Award , for his acting. The movie is a remake from "African Queen " in which Hepburn did couple with Bogart , here Wayne and Katharine hand similar roles , even there is one dangerous runaway by a river. The plot line centers the killing of the Hepburn's father. John Wayne and Hepburn set out in pursuit the evil people : Richard Jordan , Anthony Zerbe and Jack Colvin . Direction by Stuart Millar is good , cinematography by Harry Stradling is breathtaking , landscapes are spectacular and gorgeous , it has been shot in natural parks . Lively and rousing musical score by Laurence Rosenthal . Rating : 7/10 very good , well worth watching . However , the film received terrible reviews on release . Many critics felt that it was too obviously derived from ¨African Queen¨ , and that both John Wayne and Katharine Hepburn were too old for their parts . The motion picture will appeal to John Wayne and Katharine Hepburn fans .
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aliveandblessed8 December 2001
In my humble opinion, this is the best of the best John Wayne film. Although not a cowboy movie lover, I am an avid John Wayne fan, and I consider this his very best work.

The relationship between Rooster and Miss Eula has such chemistry you just can't take your eyes off the screen. Kate Hepburn looking into the eyes of John Wayne is absolutely magical and this is the way I will always remember them both.
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A western romp with some excellent acting by both the stars and the supporting cast.
tneufeld23 July 2001
This movie is more than just a lot of fun to watch. John Wayne and Katharine Hepburn are wonderful, but only because they are together. The chemistry between them is electrifying.

Richard Jordan plays his villan role to a "T". He is mean and nasty, and he keeps his character believeable to the end. There is a scene between him and Katharine Hepburn at Fort Ruby that is absolutely brilliant, you could feel the lightning flashing between their characters.

Think about the scene where the wheel broke off the wagon: Hawk gets furious with his men and Jordan's character did a great job with his part: he seem really angry, as if looks could kill. His expressions, well, it gave me the willies.

Don't you agree that Anthony Zerbe created a believeable "Breed". The two of them, Jordan and Zerbe are so believeable together. Remember the scene in the saloon when Hawk learns about the wagon being taken by Rooster? He starts to go out and Breed tells him, that he worked with Rooster for three years...and that he knows that Breed will never take Rooster? There is some great chemistry in that scene! They have tried to make movies like this before, but it hasn't happened yet: movies that made the actors create a film a success that was not relying on special affects alone, but just the characters and the story.
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Legends on display
Boyo-210 March 2000
Hepburn & the Duke made a fairly decent movie and that's enough reason to see it at least once. The fact that Hepburn has a Father in the movie is suspect, at best, especially since he's not played by Moses himself. But that's besides the point here - they have terrific chemistry and their star power alone could put most of the actors on the screen today to shame. It would have been really memorable if the movie were worthy of them, though.
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Truer grit than ever
sol-4 January 2017
Hired to track down a vicious gang, federal marshal Rooster Cogburn reluctantly lets a missionary and a Native American lad accompany him after their mission is ransacked by the gang in this belated sequel to 'True Grit'. John Wayne reprises the title role with just as much gusto despite noticeably looking older. Katharine Hepburn also puts in a strong turn as the missionary with the best scenes being the banter between the pair. The villains are not particularly interesting and the plot is no great shakes; in fact, 'Rooster Cogburn' feels more like a remake rather than sequel to 'True Grit' at times with Hepburn also seeking vengeance for a father killed. The plot is more complex than it first seems though. While most are quick to praise the chemistry between Wayne and Hepburn, it is the bond that slowly develops between Wayne and the young Amerindian, played by Richard Romancito, that is ultimately most touching. Romancito becomes a surrogate son of sorts to the once hardened old man who inadvertently finds himself with a 'family' for the first time as he pursues the gang. One wonders though just what messages (if any) the filmmakers had in mind with the project. Early on, Wayne is told "the west is changing and you aren't changing with it", and yet minutes later he hired because, again, he has "grit". Is the film meant to be a tribute to the virtues of old ways or a film about learning to change (unwillingly accepting companions)? Topped off with a memorable explosive climax, one thing for sure is that this is a more dynamic sequel than one might expect.
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Nothing to Crow About
wes-connors28 December 2010
"Two of the most popular stars in screen history are brought together for the first time in the follow-up to 'True Grit'. The film returns John Wayne to the role of the rapscallion, eye-patched, whisky-guzzling Deputy Marshall that won him an 'Academy Award'. Katharine Hepburn is prim Eula Goodnight, a bible-thumping missionary who teams up with the gunfighter to avenge the death of her father. While in pursuit of the outlaws, a warm rapport develops between the rough-and-tumble lawman and the flinty reverend's daughter," according to the film's promotional description.

While not promoted as such, this also seems to be a sideways follow-up to "The African Queen" (1951), which starred Ms. Hepburn. Realized by veteran producer Hal B. Wallis and wife Martha Hyer, the idea to bring the two legendary film stars together was a terrific one. But, the result stopped at stunt casting. Probably done when considering their age and potential for fireworks, everything seems to have been arranged to make it an easy assignment for the old pros. As a result, you have John Wayne and Katharine Hepburn going through the motions, and no fireworks.

**** Rooster Cogburn (10/17/75) Stuart Millar ~ John Wayne, Katharine Hepburn, Richard Jordan, Anthony Zerbe
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Past Their Prime (Sadly)
peter-274924 November 2011
Looking at some of the other reviews on here I am prone to thinking that I must have watched a different film!

Others have criticised the plot but I thought that this was actually one of the best parts of the film! It is no worse than many other Westerns made in the previous 40 years and certainly feasible and not BADLY written(although no "High Noon", or "Destry").

The sad thing for me however was watching the two main stars who appeared to be both well past their prime. Although in the case of Wayne the script eludes to this with the Cogburn character being described as "having let himself" and being "old" in no way am I saying that we should not have "old" actors on screen. Indeed I would welcome it. Morgan Freeman, Anthony Hopkins, Clint Eastwood to name but three have all improved with age but both Wayne and Hepburn did not with this one.

For large parts of the film it looked like they were simply reading the script and both of them were clearly having difficulty in merely getting up and walking. (Yet miraculously could ride their horses at break-neck speed and operate a raft with amazing dexterity).

On top of this there were some really gaping holes in credulity: Hepburn was 68 when this film was made but one of the main elements of the storyline is that her father is killed (played by Jon Lormer who was actually only a year older than she was)! The average life expectancy for white males in the 1880s in America was under 40! (Even less in "The West") and whilst people did live into old-age, they certainly would not have been as "nimble" as Lormer was (in comparison to the leads).

I thought that both of the main stars were wooden and overall film was rather "clunky". Anthony Zerbe played his part well but even here was let down but the fact that every time I looked at him I just thought of Clint Eastwood due to the laziness of the costume department!

Do yourself a favour and give this one a miss. If you do want to see these stars at their best, watch Wayne in "True Grit" and Hepburn in the "African Queen" instead.
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This Rooster is a turkey
dimplet29 April 2011
Now that the two stellar co-stars are long gone, the truth can be told:

Rooster Cogburn is turkey, a formulaic film designed by the marketing department, written by a writer paid by the word, directed by a producer who was faking it.

Some posters praise the chemistry between Wayne and Hepburn. What chemistry? They seem to be reading their lines off a Teleprompter, and in a great hurry.

This trivia tidbit tells it all:

-- Director Stuart Millar insisted on so many takes that eventually John Wayne snapped, "God damn it Stuart, there's only so many times we can say these awful lines before they stop making any sense at all." --

A better director might have been able to get truer performances out of these great stars, but Millar, a fine producer but apparently a talentless director, got little more than worn pennies. A good director would have told them to slow down, breathe, react and interact. Or just let these stars alone.

There's not much of a plot, and the writer doesn't do much of setting up the relationship; Hepburn just suddenly decides to tag along with Wayne, after the promised posse just happens to not show up, and Wayne puts up very little argument against what should have been absolutely against his code. So the setup has little credibility to begin with.

The comparison with African Queen is obvious, too obvious, complete with a ride down the rapids. It sets Rooster Cogburn a very high standard to live up to, and it falls flat. It looks like some movie execs figured it was a can't-fail formula. In African Queen there was some tension in the initial relationship between Hepburn and Bogart, two odd fish brought together, but both transform the other, so you get personality development in the film.

But in Cogburn there is no personality development, and way too much chatter that makes you want to fall asleep. Hepburn is constantly spouting platitudes and homilies, while Wayne has little more than cornball lines.

The other movie this inevitably gets compared with is The Shootist, Wayne's next and last film with Lauren Bacall (ironically, Bogart's long, faithful wife.) Here, Wayne showed he could still act, and there was real chemistry between Wayne and Bacall. I suspect when Bacall looks out the window crying, the tears were real, though she may have also been thinking of Bogie, who, like Wayne, died of lung cancer.

By the 1970s the problem was not that audiences were tired of Westerns so much as that it was hard to find new angles on this genre. Cogburn tries, but needed a less routine plot. Rooster Cogburn falls into the "end of the cowboy era" Western, with the judge firing him for killing too many bad guys, but fails to develop the theme.

The Shootist, on the other hand, succeeds wonderfully. Like Westerns at their best, it uses the genre to tell the story of a man dying of cancer, alone in a world that no longer has any use for gunslingers, who did good but was hated by almost everyone. You see some similarities in "Monte Walsh" decades later. It is the movie Rooster Cogburn tried to be.

In short, a great Western transcends its genre. Rooster Cogburn, unfortunately, barely rises above a B movie, even with the heavy lifting of its stars.

The low point in the movie is a plastered Wayne doing skeet shooting and never missing, but who can't stand up on his own, and then drives off with a wagon full of nitroglycerin, which could have blown up even with the most careful, sober handlers. The movie would have been better off if it had.

Cogburn is full of such improbable details. Why are they hauling bottles of nitroglycerin when there are also crates labeled dynamite? Dynamite, invented in 1867, is stable in transport, and made nitroglycerin, which is extremely unstable and dangerous, obsolete.

Obviously, based on the movie's rating, there are fans of John Wayne who will watch anything he's made. But fans of Katherine Hepburn will be appalled, for Rooster Cogburn is a disgrace to her memory. It is by far the worst movie she ever made; I can't think of anything even close.

If you imagine seeing this movie without knowing who the two stars are, what you are left with is a lethargic, overly long chase with some of the most atrocious dialog every committed by a major studio. The script is garbage that leaves a bad taste long after seeing it. So, minus the stars, this movie would rate somewhere between a 4 and a 2. It is really that bad.

Still, John Wayne and Katherine Hepburn could have been great in a Western together. I would have loved to have seen them in Going' South, instead of Jack Nicholson and Mary Steenburgen, especially in that scene with the brass bed and ropes.

Hmmmm. You know, that's what Rooster Cogburn needed: for the Duke to tie Hepburn up and stick a gag in her mouth.
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great fun, but haven't we done this all before?!
MartinHafer24 January 2006
I liked this movie quite a bit. However, only a few minutes into the film, I felt like I was experiencing deja-vu. And then I realized it!! This was an obvious remake of African QUEEN. And, they didn't even try to disguise it very well, as Kate Hepburn pretty much plays the same part she did in the original AND John Wayne is playing a part in a movie that should have been re-titled "TRUE GRIT PART II". So, despite its lack of originality, how did I score the film so highly? Well, the acting and dialog is so good that I really didn't mind watching this re-hash. Plus, for those of you who have never seen African QUEEN or TRUE GRIT, you can probably enjoy this movie even more.
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A disappointing effort..
dbowman-93 June 2007
Warning: Spoilers
I really wanted to enjoy this film! Recalling the final scene of "True Grit" when John Wayne's Rooster Cogburn and horse jumped the fence without assistance from special effects or stuntmen, a reprise of the Oscar - winning role was keenly anticipated. Complemented by Katherine Hepburn, long - term partner of another movie favourite, Spencer Tracy, this should have been a wonderful film. Unfortunately, I don't believe it was! Continuity and / or reference to "True Grit" was almost non - existent. Too much of the script occurred in near dark scenes. Richard Jordan who I thought was terrific in the later production of "Gettysburg", seems to be one - dimensional. As for "the Duke" and Miss Hepburn, they may have enjoyed working together, but I thought there was some important ingredient missing in their acting. I thought someone planned a sequel, six years after the original,to capitalise on potential box office returns. Sadly, the Western had declined in audience interest by 1974 and I believe this film didn't gain much kudos except for its curiosity value. For me, the John Wayne and Lauren Bacall pairing in "The Shootist" was much more magical and interesting, a film which sadly too few watched.
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Wayne and Hepburn are all you need.
Steve Haynie26 March 2006
Rooster Cogburn... and the Lady is the title I remember from the time the movie was released. True Grit is one of my favorite movies, so I naturally want to regard its sequel as being sacred. Like most sequels, Rooster Cogburn... and the Lady does not recreate the excitement of the original.

The characters are not motivated the same way they were in True Grit. Rooster Cogburn is not being pushed by an impatient girl. Eula Goodnight is not driven by revenge, only a desire for justice. Most of all, there is a noticeable distance between the good guys and bad guys. With the exception of the raft scenes, everyone is fighting behind cover. During the raft scenes the Gatling gun forces the villains behind cover. Other than a very brief opening sequence, there is no face-to-face fighting scene for John Wayne in Rooster Cogburn... and the Lady. The interplay between Rooster and Eula is what keeps this movie from being boring.
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Charming and fun
Devotchka23 April 2005
Warning: Spoilers
--CONTAINS SPOILER-- Rooster Cogburn is, as my summary says, a charming and fun movie. Katharine Hepburn is magic as always, and though I don't know much about John Wayne, I thought he did a good job here. They both play stubborn, spirited characters--the sort Hepburn does best, I think!--thrown together by circumstance and forced to cooperate in order to survive.

Though the ending is perhaps a little unsatisfying, I'm glad at least that they didn't choose the typical, hackneyed "the main male character and the main female character finally begin to understand one another after fighting for the whole damn movie and fall in love" option that so many films seem to feel obligated to end with. (Maybe they do, but Rooster Cogburn leaves that to your imagination, and that's what counts.)
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Enough with the African Queen comparisons!
rrrnay19 February 2007
Warning: Spoilers
Good grief, enough already! 1. Rose Sayer and Eula Goodnight are alike in one respect, they were missionaries. Beyond that, the characters were completely different Rose was prim, proper and quite out of place in Africa. Eula fit in...rode astraddle, shot a gun (and bagged their dinner, wilderness stew anyone?) In short, Eula could take fine care of herself thank you very much! Rose only learned that she wasn't a wall flower by going on the African Queen with Charlie. 2. Charlie originally only had allegiance to himself but learned about loyalty to someone else by being with Rose. Despite his protests about "letting a man be" Rooster was loyal to the law (or at least as close as he could come to it) 3. Rose and Charlie both went through significant changes to be together...Rooster and Eula learned to accept each other 'as is.' 4.Fighting outlaws and going downriver to escape them is not the same as fighting rapids to get down river to torpedo a boat, jeez, the river in The African Queen was a character in it's own right, while in Rooster Cogburn it's just a setting.

It's late and I don't have time for more...but a pox on whoever started this idea and a double pox on those who mindlessly repeat it!
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Wayne and Hepburn sparkle
papajim17 July 2003
Not the best John Wayne movie, but a damn good one. He and Hepburn make it move along, and you can see the genuine chemistry between their characters. As the movie progresses, you can feel him come to understand and respect her, and you can feel her becoming more fond of him, regardless of his faults. He finally admitting that being with her "pleases" him, and her final speech to him says it all. An enjoyable film all around.
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Good late wayne western
bogart-1812 April 1999
This is the first time I've seen this film since it was made almost 25 years ago. I tend to stay away from late John Wayne and anything before Stagecoach. I really saw it for Richard Jordan as he was one of my favorites since I saw him do Shakespeare in the Park back in the 1960's. Jordan excelled in playing mean bad guys in westerns (Posse, Chato's Land) and the character of Hawk was probably the meanest he ever played. Wayne and Hepburn have good chemistry together and worked with a good script. It dragged a little towards the end, and I would have liked to see a showdown between Hawk and Cogburn, but otherwise a good western.
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A Showplace
Dan Evans6 July 2003
John Wayne and Katherine Hepburn in a movie called `Rooster Cogburn'? Wow pop some corn and turn it on. Then I noticed in the credits that Katherine's gowns were by Edith Head. Wait a minute isn't this film about the Oklahoma badlands? And isn't Eula Goodnight a poor preachers daughter? – Something funny going on here. Then the movie starts with grandeur vistas of mountains and pine trees. Sure aren't the rolling hills and scrub hardwood of Oklahoma's Arkansas River country west of Fort Smith. My first thought was they have really messed up. Then it dawned on me. How could you properly show off this magnificent couple in the scrub of Oklahoma in a cotton sack dress. The movie and the story and everything else is just a showcase. If you were expecting a plot, depth of dialog, or realism don't go here. However if you love either John Wayne or Katherine Hepburn, as I do, this will be part of your collection after you see it. I saw in the trailer the film was shot on location in Rouge River country in Oregon. It was a truly wonderful showcase.
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African Queen meets True Grit
JoeytheBrit16 June 2009
It's good to see that after fifty years in the business, the Duke was still belting out the performances with gusto. He appears to be having a whale of a time here, as does his co-star, the redoubtable Katharine Hepburn. Unfortunately, the chances are that they had more fun making this film than many of the audience will have watching it.

What we basically have here is a remake of The African Queen disguised as a sequel to True Grit, and both the previous films were better. Wayne and Hepburn play off each other quite well, but a sometimes lacklustre script means the chemistry isn't as strong as it should - or could - have been. The film takes its own sweet time to get going, but once it does things begin to pick up a bit, resulting in an acceptable finale. It's a shame that Richard Jordan feels it necessary to shout his performance in order to make everyone see what a bad guy he is. Ably competing with Wayne's charisma and Hepburn's star quality is Anthony Zerbe - one of the 70s most under-rated actors - as a bad guy with a moral code. It's a shame the film couldn't have given him a bit more screen time.
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a disappointing sequel
TheUnknown837-110 June 2007
"True Grit" is one of the finest Westerns ever made, and definitely features John Wayne's best performance. In that film, the character was perfectly made to suit him. Unfortunately, the sequel to "True Grit", titled "Rooster Cogburn" is not a film that works out so well. True, John Wayne was still top-notch as his ever-famous character and Katharine Hepburn, one of the best actresses of all time, was great in her role, the film is spoiled by others factors.

The plot of "Rooster Cogburn" is not particularly original, but then again, neither was "True Grit". But you don't need an original plot to have a good movie. You need a movie with a plot that is developed and executed in the right manner. "Rooster Cogburn" plays dull and slowly, with characters that we really couldn't care less about and a climax that we really just want to come so that we can see what happens. And the climax itself is one of the biggest downers I have ever stumbled upon. Some of the minor action sequences of the film were more entertaining than the ending shootouts of "Rooster Cogburn". The villains were very badly developed, you couldn't really remember any differences between them and they really had not point in the film. They were just there to be there.

I watched it for three reasons: John Wayne, Katharine Hepburn, True Grit sequel. Two of those aspects were done perfectly. That would be John Wayne and Katharine Hepburn, two of the greatest stars of all time. They did their parts with perfection, as they always did in their long careers. But the third point fails. "Rooster Cogburn" just fails to be a compelling movie. It's overall a major disappointment, especially when compared to the cleverness and entertainment presented before us in "True Grit".
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Top Drawer All The Way
stuartk707012 February 2005
Rooster Cogburn is top of the line entertainment of the "old school" of movie making.

Every character, every scene and every piece of dialog is top drawer story telling at it's best. Suffice it to say, Rooster Cogburn / The Shootist are fitting movies to end John Wayne's career...a career that defined the Western male lead.

Wayne's character epitomizes the raw American Individual Spirit that takes on the task because it is noble and right, regardless of the odds.

No other actors other than Wayne and Hepburn could carry this movie...a movie made in the twilight of each of their careers. One can't help but put yourself in the movie each time you watch it and wish Wayne & Hepburn were still there...both of them will be greatly missed!
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