Wednesday, June 28, 2006

June 28, 2006
Writing this high on drugs. More on that later.

The town of Cripple Creek, Colorado has announced that they are deferring until next year their Pony Express Classic Horse Race. Complete information for the 2007 race is on the website at

www.ponyexpressclassic.com

A Fellow Hat and Clothes Nazi Weighs In On Duvall’s Latest
If you have not seen BROKEN TRAIL yet, spoilers are below. BROKEN TRAIL Thoughts in Random Order

• Horse equipage stunk.

• Clothing decent, could have even given some of them Batwings, due to the date. Not sure about Duvall's strap gloves. I know this pattern is issued late in WWII.

• Story seemed to default to convenience a bit much. The third guy (comparable to a red-shirted Star Trek cast member) was fluent in Crow, played the violin and was from Virginia. Come again? He seemed to have been added only to have the music in a scene and for the Crow negotiations on horse tariff. The scene would have been better in sign language anyway.

• Loved the Indian line about beautiful women with ugly white men, but this was almost missed due to following the translation. And when he died it was anti-climatic at best. I thought he had just been wounded. Too often this movie "told" rather than "showed." If we had seen Jake get the back of his head blown off, we wouldn't need Duvall to tell us what had happened.

• Why did Duvall send the girls away the first time? Why wasn't he pissed when they brought them back? Too convenient to bring the "seamstress" along.

• Gus McRae would have killed the bad guys at his campfire.

• Loved the lynching and the violence level overall. Some of it did not seem blocked well. Duvall beats a guy to the draw by pulling his Winchester?

• Should have delved more into race than it did. We see Church getting into a confrontation over a panhandler being thrown out of a bar, but then he and Duvall seem indifferent to the Chinese girls, and only get involved because they are robbed. Would have been nice to explore that a bit more.

• Too surreal with the final torture-killing of Duvall. Surrendering did not work for what we knew about the character and seemed too set piece for the killing to take time so Church could come in and kill them. Again too convenient and too clich├ęd.

• Loved most of the dialogue and little nuggets. Therapeutic paper in a box (correct), the girls' inspection prior to sale, castrating and feeding the remnants to the dogs. Good stuff and was usually not disappointed.

• Decent musical score.

“Overall enjoyed it much, at least as much as OPEN RANGE. Hats were better in this but OR had that superb gun battle. Waiting patiently for JESSE JAMES.”
—Alan Huffines

News From The Front Lines
“Janet Haigh of Burbank, CA subscribed today. She was on Amazon.com and
takes Cowboys & Indians magazine, Amazon showed, ‘If you like this magazine, you might like True West and she decided to give it a try.’ She loves the old west and has a mule named Tom.”
—Carole Glenn

Hello, Mr. Bell!
“Isn't Lincoln the best place to visit? I'm a huge Billy the Kid fan, and when I stayed in the Billy the Kid Room at the Ellis Store B&B, I thought I died and went to heaven. We stayed there in August 2005, during the Old Lincoln Town Days, and watched 'The Last Escape of Bill the Kid' twice.

“I have a tiny ghost story to share with you. We were getting settled in the room, and my husband Tom was laying on the bed, while I was hanging our clothes up in this very old armoire. (When I talked to the owner, he said they were trying to keep that room as authentic as possible). Well, Tom was saying something, about why in the heck I'm so nuts about the Old West (he isn't!) and I turned around to give him some witty answer. Before I could speak...the armoire door s-l-o-w-l-y started to close, with a loud squeaking noise, and then the latch locked itself. Tom jumped off the bed and yelled: 'BILLEEEEE!'

“I wrote what happened in the diary that is left in the Billy the Kid room. I also told everyone else about it during breakfast the next morning. Everyone there agreed it was Billy's ghost. My co-workers back at work in Holbrook, AZ, weren't convinced. They stated that it was due to uneven flooring.

“NO WAY, MAN! It was Billy. I KNOW it!!”
—Beth H., TW Maniac #1334

The Ultimate Complement
"Lincoln today would look familiar to Billy the Kid."
The Best of The West, a new book out by Bill O'Neal

”Forget past mistakes. Forget failures. Forget everything except what you're going to do now and do it.”
—William Durant, founder of General Motors

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