Ride the High Country

1962

Action / Western

9
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 93%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 83%
IMDb Rating 7.6 10 10230

Synopsis


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Director

Cast

Mariette Hartley as Elsa Knudsen
L.Q. Jones as Sylvus Hammond
Warren Oates as Henry Hammond
Edgar Buchanan as Judge Tolliver
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
672.89 MB
1280*534
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 34 min
P/S 4 / 8
1.41 GB
1920*800
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 34 min
P/S 2 / 12

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Ross622 10 / 10

A beautifully filmed western

Sam Peckinpah's "Ride the High Country" is framed like one of John Ford's westerns and one thing in common with those and many other western movies that this is one of the best westerns ever made. The movie stars Joel McCrea as Steve Judd an ex Union Army soldier and retired lawman who is hired to find and transport gold back to the bank, but he couldn't do it alone as he couldn't think of any other person better to help him than his old friend Gil Westrum (Randolph Scott) who brought along a young kid named Heck Longtree (Ron Starr), while on the trail the three men stay for the night on a ranch owned by a man named Joshua Knudsen (R.G. Armstrong) who is very religious and has a daughter named Elsa (Mariette Hartley) who Longtree gets a crush on but doesn't find out right away that she is engaged to a man named Billy Hammond (James Drury) who along with his brothers have very bad manners and do not treat Elsa very well. As the movie goes on Judd finds out that Westrum is trying to betray him by stealing the gold and keeping it for himself despite their friendship knowing all along and repeatedly denying that it would happen, arrests him and then they become friends again. This movie would go on to be Randolph Scott's final role in movies and after filming ended he said that making movies no longer interested him and that he couldn't give any better performance than he did in this movie which would end up being his most popular film. The performances are excellent especially featuring standout work from both Scott and McCrea (who was very modest about his own acting abilities) thanks to a great screenplay from N.B. Stone Jr., and Peckinpah's direction for this movie which happened to be his second film that he directed, as well as the beautiful cinematography by Lucien Ballard. The movie ranks among the best western movies that I've ever seen in my entire life and I've seen lots of them, and thanks to a masterpiece like this as well as one of the top ten best films of 1962 I am totally looking forward to seeing more of Sam Peckinpah's movies in the future.

Reviewed by Jugu Abraham 7 / 10

Clean upright western

Clean all white western--no blacks, no native Americans! Even the characters admit that one's actions are never black or white, meaning there are a lot of grey actions in our lives. Joel McCrea's character wants to go to the House (read, heaven). Very religious script for a western. Now, did Altman take a leaf from this film's gold diggers' community sequence to make "McCabe and Mrs Miller"?

Reviewed by Wuchak 9 / 10

Enter your house justified

Released in 1962, "Ride the High Country" was Sam Peckinpah's second feature film and arguably his best Western; yes, better than the overrated "Wild Bunch" (1969). While it lacks that movie's slow-motion ultra-violence, it has a superior story and more interesting characters.

BASIC PLOT: Too aging ex-lawmen and old friends take a job transporting a gold shipment from a mountain mining settlement to the bank in the town below. One is a man of integrity (Joel McCrea) while the other has compromised his (Randolph Scott). Can he be redeemed? And at what cost? What about his young mentee (Ron Starr)?

The conflict between puritanical religion and purity of purpose is spotlighted with Elsa's curmudgeonly father representing the former and Judd (McCrea) the latter.

Yet there's so much more, like the five redneck brothers from hell at the wild mining camp, not to mention Mariette Hartley (Elsa) in her debut. The movie's short at 94 minutes, but seems longer (in a good way) because it's so dense with gems to mine, like Elsa's brief discussion with Judd:

ELSA: "My father says there's only right and wrong, good and evil; nothing in between. It isn't that simple, is it?"

JUDD: "No, it isn't. It should be, but it isn't."

Elsa flees the stifling clutches of her legalistic father to marry some young buck at the hedonistic frontier camp. She's swings on the pendulum from legalism to libertinism, which is the opposite extreme, but they're actually two sides of the same bad coin. Judd represents the sound middle path of wisdom. Everyone near him recognizes this and is positively influenced by him, one way or another, even his old wayward friend. Kudos to the genius of writer N.B. Stone Jr.

Both Scott and McCrea retired from acting after this winner, although the latter decided to return several years later. Some say "Ride the High Country" represents the non-official end of the traditional Western and the beginning of the new.

The film was shot in Inyo National Forest, Malibu Creek State Park, Merrimac & Bronson Canyon, Griffith Park, California.

GRADE: A

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