‘The Magnificent Seven': THR’s 1960 Review

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In Oct 1960, John Sturges’ star-studded 128-minute western The Magnificent Seven strike U.S. theaters, eventually apropos one of a iconic films of a genre. The Hollywood Reporter’s strange examination is below: 

The Magnificent Seven has a stars and a prolongation values to open big, and substantially will. But it is not a success, as a story or as entertainment. About two-thirds of a film is good, tough, unromantic duration western. About one-third is nauseating nonsense and it bushwhacks a remainder. It is as if someone motionless a design wasn’t blurb enough. In adding supposed blurb values, a good design has been sabotaged. 

Robert Sturges constructed and destined a Mirisch prolongation for United Artists. The William Roberts screenplay is blending to a shade from a Japanese film of some years ago, Seven Samurai. It was associate writer Lou Morheim’s thought that this Japanese film would make a good western. It was a good thought though it has not worked out. 

The story now has a unkempt Mexican encampment terrorized by a sparse criminal chief, Eli Wallach. To strengthen themselves from his periodic plunderings, a villagers, headed by Rico Alaniz, sinecure a organisation of gunmen — Yul Brynner, Steve McQueen, Horst Buchholz, Charles Bronson, Robert Vaughn, Brad Dexter and James Coburn. For a fee, these soulless group determine to strengthen a city and run off Wallach and his band. The indicate of a screenplay is that by branch romantic for money, a integrity of their position rubs off on a men. By a time they are through, they have spin better.

In a initial place, western badmen are not samurai, and to spin them into a homogeneous of knights in armor, a good understanding some-more impression and carnival is required than is given. These men, in a stream version, are unequivocally [bums], and if this fact had been faced and confirmed it would have done a ludicrous and opposite picture. There is no intrigue in a film, solely for a totally unimaginable adjunct during a really end, and this candid accent on transformation keeps a film relocating when it does not swamp down in presumable truth and repentance. 

Brynner is acceptable in a heading role, nonetheless he tends to hang to one expression, maybe personification it laconic. Wallach is always a pleasant actor to watch. McQueen, if he can get sprung from TV, where he is training zero and usually removing older, is going to be a good large star. In his final dual films he has played delegate leads and in any he has hold his possess opposite a tip star, to put it politely. 

Buchholz, a immature German actor, creates his U.S. film crawl as a Mexican Indian, a extraordinary bit of casting, though one that comes off all right. Bronson roughly brings off a love aspects of a film, and a design could have taken a lot some-more out of him. Vaughn is all though squandered in a purpose that apparently has been left on a slicing room floor. Others distinguished and useful embody Brad Dexter, James Coburn, Vladimir Sokoloff, Rico Alaniz and Rosenda Monteros. 

Sturges as a executive is unexcelled during doing movement. With his cameraman, Charles Lang, he has done glorious use of roving shots, swirling transformation that yield a film’s highlights. The Eastman Color is excellent, and a Panavision routine good, nonetheless a routine is indeed improved than it gets shown here. Elmer Bernstein’s song is truly memorable; a thesis will stick. Ferris Webster’s modifying is fine, and a sold item on a transformation work. — James Powers, creatively published Oct. 5, 1960. 

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