Stunning Western based on Charles Portis's novel and adapted by Marguerite Roberts about a hard-nosed , tough U.S. Marshal and a Texas Ranger who help an obstinate 14-years-old young woman track down her father's murderer in Indian territory ; being object a recent remake by Coen Brothers , Joel and Ethan with Jeff Bridges . Mattie Ross (Kim Darby , subsequently played by Hailee Steinfeld), a teenager from Yell County, Arkansas, is determined to revenge the killing of her daddy . Frank Ross was killed by his hired hand , Tom Cheney ( Jeff Corey , ulterior role by Josh Brolin), after attempting to dissuade an alcoholic Cheney from shooting a fellow card player who had cheated him . Cheney stole Ross's horse and fled the town . Enraged that no one bothered to pursue or convict Cheney, Mattie decides to take the investigation into her own hands . Leaving her mother and two younger siblings at home, Mattie journeys to Fort Smith where her dad was murdered . She identifies his body at the undertakers . She sells a string of ponies back to the reluctant seller (Strother Martin) and acquires three hundred and twenty dollars from the sale . After consulting the local sheriff (John Doucette) , she settles on the marshal described as the meanest : Rueben Rooster Cogburn (John Wayne's Academy Award-winning , posterior role by Jeff Bridges) , Mattie resolves to contact an U.S. marshal to pursue and catch Tom Cheney . And she attempts to hire him but is rebuffed . Mattie makes a second attempt after a court hearing at which Cogburn was questioned, but Cogburn turns her down again, doubting that she actually possesses amount of dollars she offered him as a reward for Cheney's capture . Renting a room at a Fort Smith boarding house, she meets a Texas Ranger , LaBouef ( Glen Campbell , posterior character performed by Matt Damon) and they along with Cogburn go to track down Cheney , Ned Pepper (Robert Duvall) and hoodlums .
Gentle entertainment about a tough-minded , hard-bitten bounty hunter and a fearless bargainer , stubborn adolescent in the Old West starred by the master of the western , an over-the-hill John Wayne , he is magnificent expert in the art of conjuring stylish , here stars this atypical but amusing western with a lot of jokes , distinguished moments , comical attitudes but also violence and action . Wayne deservedly won his best actor Academy Award for this 1960 portrayal of the boozy Marshal . Likable Kim Darby as an obstinate teen is very good , she is extremely quick-witted and confident . The enjoyable story is enhanced for entertaining moments developed among main characters and especially on the relationship between John Wayne and Kim Darby . Impressive final scenes dealing with a spectacular showdown between Rooster Cogburn and chief baddie well played by Robert Duvall. The stellar cast is accompanied with familiar hearted features , some excellent secondary actors as Robert Duvall , Dennis Hooper , Strother Martin , Jeff Corey , Jeremy Slate , Dennis Hooper , among others . Splendid musical score by Elmer Berstein in his usual style as 'The Magnificent seven' , 'The Comancheros' and '4 sons of Katie Elder' . Coloful cinematography by Lucien Ballard , mostly filmed in Natural parks from Montrose, Colorado,Owl Creek Pass ,Ridgway, Colorado, Sherwin Summit, Inyo National Forest and Durango, Mexico . Followed by a sequel titled ¨Rooster Cogburn¨ with Wayne and Katherine Hepburn and a TV movie with Warren Oates and Lisa Pelikan .
Well and professionally realized by Henry Hathaway with strong screen presence by John Wayne , both of whom collaborated in various Westerns , they included ¨Five Card Stud¨ , ¨North to Alaska¨ , ¨Rooster Cogburn¨ and ¨4 sons of Katie Elder¨ . Hathaway himself was only even nominated for an Oscar , but his movies themselves are testimony to his skills to heighten narrative tension and shoot action so exhilarating it made adrenalin run . Henry was a craftsman who had a long career from the 30s with successful films , and especially Westerns , as ¨Brigham Young¨ and ¨Raw Hide¨ . In his 60s Hathaway still got the vigour to make some fiery movies as ¨From Hell to Texas¨, ¨How the West was won¨, ¨Nevada Smith¨, and ¨Shoot out¨ . He was an expert on Western genre as he proved in ¨True grit , Five card stud , Nevada Smith , How the West was won , Rawhide , Brigham Young , Buffalo Stampede, Garden of evil¨ and ¨The sons of Katie Elder¨. Rating : Better than average , nice Western that will appeal to John Wayne fans. Action , interesting plot , top-notch performance and breathtaking last half hour make it fine screen amusement . It's still one of the Duke classics .
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