There are films that I truly believe that people need to see before they die or before they end a challenge. I found one of those films that believe it or not I have never seen in Bullitt which is today’s film. Steve McQueen (The Magnificent Seven) plays no holds barred cop Bullitt who is really good at his job. That is until one day when a government witness who was put under his protection was killed. Now he’ll dive head first into the criminal underworld to try and catch the guys who did this especially with the DA (Robert Vaughn) breathing down his neck. The film also stars Jacqueline Bisset (Murder On The Orient Express) as Cathy, Don Gordon (Lethal Weapon) as Delgetti, Simon Oakland (West Side Story) as Captain Sam Bennett, Norman Fell (Three’s Company) as Captain Baker, Robert Duvall (The Godfather: Part II) as Weissberg, Georg Stanford Brown (Stir Crazy) as Dr. Willard, Felice Orlandi (Another 48 Hrs.) as Albert Renick, Pat Renella (Moonchild) as Johnny Ross, Vic Tayback (Papillon) as Pete Ross, Justin Tarr (The Rat Patrol) as Eddy, Carl Reindel (Tora! Tora! Tora!) as Carl Stanton, Ed Peck (Heaven Can Wait) as Westcott, John Aprea (The Game) as the killer, Paul Genge (The FBI Story) as Mike, and the film was directed by Peter Yates (Krull).
I am certainly glad that I get to cross this one off the list and one question for all of you. Why is it that San Francisco had all the bad ass cops from Bullitt to Dirty Harry? I am not complaining, but that is where they seem to come from back in the late 60’s and 70’s. One of the coolest sequences of the film is definitely the car chase scene with Bullitt’s 1968 Ford Mustang 390 GT 2+2 Fastback and the bad guy’s 1968 Dodge Charger 440 Magnum which is a slight bit faster than the stang. The chase scene really made you feel like you were in the car with McQueen and the camera angles from inside the vehicle with him. That definitely sets him part from everyone else and very cool to have in the film.The foot chase towards the end of the film was also pretty good and suspenseful, but not like the car chase (Obviously). It was great to see Jacqueline Bisset who was definitely the eye candy for the film and for the most part the film contained good acting. McQueen was the strong silent type who when he needs to, he’ll tell you like it is. Besides the car chase scene, the cinematography is pretty decent in the film and the writing was OK. The film is pretty bad ass, but it is what it is and you understand that going in. I am going to give the film an B+ for a final grade.
I am once again going down my list of films to watch, but today’s film is on the list for a separate reason. When I heard that they were remaking The Magnificent Seven, I told myself that I had to watch the original before seeing the remake and so here it is for today’s film. Every year, a village in Mexico is terrorized by the thief Calvera (Eli Wallach) and he steals their crops and kills any villager that dares stand up to him. That is until one day when three of the villagers come to America to hire a gunman by the name of Chris Larabee Adams (Yul Brynner) to help save the village. Adas will then go ahead and hire six of the best gunfighters around to help him out and form the Magnificent Seven which is made up of Vin Tanner (Steve McQueen), Bernando O’Reilly (Charles Bronson), Lee (Robert Vaughn), Harry Luck (Brad Dexter), Britt (James Coburn), and Chico (Horst Buchholz). The film also stars Rico Alaniz (The Life and Legend Of Wyatt Earp) as Sotero, Jorge Martínez de Hoyos (The Professionals) as Hilario, Rosenda Monteros (She) as Petra, Robert J. Wilke (High Noon) as Wallace, and the film was directed by John Sturges (The Great Escape).
I am going to be the first to admit that I am not a huge fan of Westerns, but there are exceptions to the rule that make me change my mind. After all, westerns are basically American folklore hence a reason why they were so popular at one time or another. The Magnificent Seven is definitely the exception to the rule as it was definitely one of the best westerns I have ever seen besides Tombstone. Yul Brynner is at his absolute best as he commands the screen while newcomer Horst Buchholz provides with plenty of moments of laughter that keep us going throughout the film with naive personality. Eli Wallach should also be mentioned into the conversation as he plays the antagonist of the film and a very good one to boot. One of my favorite scenes is in the beginning of the film because it helped set the tone for the rest of the film. It’s the scene where Yul’s character first meets Steve McQueen’s as they do the impossible by taking the body of an Indian through Boot Hill. It just shows how daring they are and how willing they are to do the right thing. The story was excellent and very well written and the cinematography was good as well as they captured all of the action. If you are a fan of westerns then this is one you have to check out because it’s hard to find the flaws of the film. I am going to give The Magnificent Seven an A for a final grade. Now, we wait until September 23RD for the remake to come out.