Classic Movie Hub (CMH)

Forty Guns

(Movies)
When
December 10, 2018 (Monday)
Where
Music Box Theatre
3733 N. Southport Ave
Chicago, Illinois 60613 (US)
Website: http://www.northwestchicagofilmsociety.org/calendar/current-season/

Event Details

Monday, December 10 @ 7:00 PM / Music Box Theatre
FORTY GUNS

Directed by Samuel Fuller / 1957

As budgets and screens swelled in tandem in the 1950s, bread-and-butter genre pictures like musicals and westerns became bigger, louder, and safer. The exception that proves the rule: Samuel Fuller's Forty Guns, a propulsive, devil-may-care Western shot in black-and-white Cinemascope in two weeks, complete with Jidge Carroll singing the ballad of "The Woman with the Whip" to a gaggle of men bathing in a sagebrush spa. Barbara Stanwyck stars as Jessica Drummond, the Tombstone titan who commands as many thieves as Ali Baba. Her central conflict-protecting her ne'er-do-well brother (John Ericson) or giving it all up for the ex-gunslinger she comes to love (Barry Sullivan)-may sound rote, but the execution and emotional nuance are anything but. The overall attitude owes something to other proto-feminist westerns of the era, such as The Woman They Almost Lynched and Johnny Guitar, but the melancholy/mercenary savoir faire is specifically, spectacularly Stanwyck. As an independent producer contracted with 20th Century-Fox, Fuller enjoyed an unusual degree of creative freedom, staging elaborate dolly-shot excavations of Tombstone storefronts with a gusto that any studio chief would've found alarming. Still, Fuller's experience was not without some compromise; as he complained in his posthumous autobiography, "For Chrissakes, my gunman had to think about box office receipts before pulling the trigger." (KW)

80 min / Globe Enterprises / 35mm from 20th Century Fox

Cartoon: "Wild and Woolfy" (Tex Avery, 1945) - 8 min - 16mm

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