Gotta love True Grit.
I admit I am not the must unbiased person when it comes to westerns. Heck I would probably sit in my seat for two hours and watch dust blow up the street of a western town. Sure maybe to add excitement, it would be good to have an occasional dog wander by, show a few horses at the hitching post, maybe have someone tossed out of a saloon every now and then, but I would be quite happy to sit there dumbly and escape into the old West.
But, I thought True Grit was great. I remember seeing the original in the movie theater in 1969 and I thought I would be comparing John Wayne to Jeff Bridges the whole movie. Never happened. Jeff Bridges fits the role of an old drunken coot perfectly and even pulls off what has to be one of the top ten scenes in any western movie. Ned Pepper says, “That is bold talk for a one eye fat man” and Rooster says “Fill your hand you son of a bitch” and he takes the rein in his teeth and gallops across the plains with six guns blazing.
Come on – I dare you to beat that dialogue. Hey, I told you this was going to be a very biased review. Guns, horses, one-eyed fat people, demanding 14 year old, great character actors, mean looking bad guys, rattlesnakes, chopped off fingers, guns blazing, did I say horses and guns and gun fights and a plot even I can understand.
A bad guy kills your father and you hire a one-eyed fat man and go track him down. I can handle plots like that.
True Grit. Great western scenery, guns and fights and …. Okay- I know ENOUGH! But this is a great feel-good movie. Go see it. Some people are whining it is not as good as the original. It is. And it is a lot of fun. So you can listen to a lot of eggheads sit around and compare it to the original, or you can go see a great western. Your choice.
Three final thoughts. I read the book True Grit many years ago and it was good, but I still believe the best Western book is McCabe ( movie was Mcabe and Mrs, Miller).Just an opinion.
I did miss General Sterling Price , Rooster’s cat. I didn’t see him in the remake.
And there was only one comparison for some reason, I kept making. Glen Campbell played the Texas Ranger in the original True Grit, Matt Damon plays him in this remake. This makes no sense, but for some reason when Matt Damon appeared, I kept thinking – “Hmm, Glen Campbell played the Texas Ranger in the first version”.
On the way out of the movie, my friend and I agreed it was a great movie and I said, ” I kept seeing Glen Campbell as the Texas Ranger.”
And she said “Who’s Glen Campbell” ?
I guess she won’t be “Gentle on My Mind”. Maybe “By the Time I get to Phoenix” I will pass the “Wichita Lineman”.