Legend Collection: John Wayne (2007)
John Wayne, Marlene Dietrich, Kirk Douglas, Katharine Hepburn.
time: 109 mins average.
you'd expect, there's lot's of two-fisted brawling and gunplay
in this special edition of five movies commemorating the 100th
anniversary of the birth of `The Duke`.
well as the exptected western shoot 'em ups, Wayne also does
a good iob of playing Chance Buckman, a fictional oil well
fighter loosely based on the famed Red Adair in Hellfighters
(1968). The fire scenes have penty of realism and romantic
sparks fly, too, when Buckman and his ex-wife Madelyn (Vera
Miles) clash over the marrage of their daughter Tish (Katharine
Ross) to his right-hand man Greg Parker (Jim Hutton). The
dangers of firefighting caused Madelyn to divorce Buckman
The Wild Wind also finds the Duke without horse or saddle.
Working with the legendary director of lavish epics, Cecil
B. DeMille, Wayne is an upright sailor competing with the
shady Ray Milland for the affections of Paulette Goddard.
With pirates and shipwrecks set against the background of
Key West in the 1840s, this is a heady mix.
for the evil Raymond Massey and the finale's epic underwater
confrontation as Milland and Wayne are cornered by a giant
squid. An early colour film fromm 1942, this looks great.
was also the year Wayne teamed with Marlene Dietrich - his
real-life girlfriend for a while - and Randolph Scott in The
Spoilers. This finds Wayne on more ground in a lusty story
about gold fever in Alaska in the 1890s.
other two films are from late in Waynes long career
and notable for their rough humour. I particularly enjoyed
The War Wagon (1967), co-starring Kirk Douglas as a hired
gun who agrees to help Wayne, a drunken explosives expert,
an Indian and a compulsive old thief pull off a daring robbery
against the ruthless businessman (Bruce Cabot) who stole Wayner's
ranch. They're up against a stagecoach armed with a gatling
gun flanked by at least 20 guards.
Rooster Cogburn (1975), Wayne less successfully reprised the
role of the cantankerous marshal with which he won the "Best
Actor" Oscar in True Grit in 1969. The acting isn't the
problem, it's the lacklustre story of Cogburn teaming with
a preacher's daughter Eula Goodnight (Katharine Hepburn) to
hunt down a gang who killed her father and ransacked a village.
Wayne and Hepburn have some good scenes together but the film
picture and sound tranfers throughout this set - a pity there
are no extras.