The Last Hard Men

1976

Action / Western

30
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 52%
IMDb Rating 6.2 10 1566

Synopsis


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Cast

James Coburn as Provo
Charlton Heston as Sam Burgade
Barbara Hershey as Susan Burgade
Michael Parks as Noel Nye
720p.BLU
755.25 MB
1280*720
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 38 min
P/S 4 / 7

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by ma-cortes 6 / 10

Violent but entertaining Western with a duel of titans : Heston versus Coburn

In the early 20th century, a bandit named Zach Provo, a half Indian, (Provo well played by James Coburn , who was sent to prison during the latter part of the 19th century) leads a band of outlaw convicts on a jailbreak . Provo (Sean Connery and Robert Shaw were considered for the role) along with with 6 others to exact vengeance on Sam Burgade (a tough-guy splendidly performed by Charlton Heston) , an upright lawman , whose daughter (a very young Barbara Hershey) is abducted and threatening to gang-rape her . Provo seeks vendetta on Burgade because he not only captured him but was also responsible for the death of Provo's wife, at least in Provo's mind . At the beginning , the wild bunch holds up a train and attempt a bank until a bloody vengeance . The misfit group is formed by cutthroat guys (Jorge Rivero , Larry Wilcox , Thalmus Rasulala , Morgan Paull , John Quade ,Robert Donner) who kidnap the daughter and threat to rape but it goes wrong . This is the story about some men making their last stand and carrying out a merciless revenge .

This decent Western packs lots of action , shootouts, and explosive violence , including some tasteless images . Go riding , crossfire and fights provide some welcome distraction . Taut excitement throughout , beautifully photographed and spectacular bloodletting filmed in slow moving ; it was shot "in the style of Sam Peckinpah" . Rich in texture and including intelligent screenplay full of incredibly violent scenes . However , it has some appalling and disgusting rape frames entirely out of place . This motion picture is set in 1909 Arizona which is arguably right at the end of the old wild American western frontier era period if not it already having ended by the 1890s , as there is an occasional elegiac tone lamenting the passing of the West . This Western picture was based on the novel "Gun Down" by Brian Garfield ; and it was made and released about five years after its source book that had been first published in 1971 . Vibrant as well as brilliant all-star-cast displays exceptional performances . Charlton Heston is perfect as a veteran ex-sheriff with his own ethic codes . This is Charlton Heston's last name rhymes with Western , four years after this 1976 film, Heston would co-star in 1980's Mountain Men , another good western . James Coburn is terrific as a convict sets into motion plan of revenge on old Marshall . Furthermore , good secondaries such as and Jorge Rivero , Larry Wilcox , Thalmus Rasulala , Morgan Paull , John Quade , Robert Donner and Michael Parks as reform-minded Marshal. Enjoyable musical score , Jerry Goldsmith is credited with "Music" on the film's credits, the credit is misleading as he composed no original score for the film, instead it was tracked with cues from four other westerns he scored: 100 rifles (1969) ; Río Conchos (1964); Morituri (1965) and Stagecoach (1966) , which is why he did not receive a credit like "Original Music composed & Conducted by". Colorful and evocative cinematography in Panavisión by Duke Callaghan , Peckinpah's usual , and portions of this film were photographed at Old Tucson Studios, Tucson, Arizona .

This actioner motion picture was professionally directed by the veteran director of Westerns Andrew V. McLaglen , though Jack Smight and possibly Stuart Rosenberg were considered for the director . This was final cinema movie western directed by Andrew V. McLaglen who was a veteran of the genre . McLaglen though continued to direct a few more westerns for television. Andrew V. McLaglen, the veteran director of Westerns, is son of great actor Victor McLagen and known John Ford's disciple . Andrew holds the distinction of directing the most episodes of "Gunsmoke" . Furthermore , he holds the honor of filmmaking the most episodes of ¨Have gun , Will travel" (1957). And is one of the few directors to have directed both Clint Eastwood and John Wayne . He's a Western expert (McLintock, Shenandoah, Bandolero, Chisum, Cahill, Way west) and warlike specialist , such as proved in several films ( Return to Kwai, Wild Geese , Dirtdozen: the next mission, Sea wolves, Breakthrough ) . The Last Hard Men is a real must see for fans of the genre in Peckinpah style . Rating : Nice , acceptable and passable , 6 .

Reviewed by Wuchak 5 / 10

It should've been great, but it's relatively unengrossing with dull characters

Released in 1976 and directed by Andrew V. McLaglen, "The Last Hard Men" is a Western starring Charlton Heston as Burgade, a retired law enforcement officer in Arizona, 1909. When a vicious half-breed outlaw, Provo (James Coburn), escapes from a Yuma prison with several other thugs Burgade gets back in the saddle, literally, because Provo's coming after him and his daughter (Barbara Hershey). Michael Parks plays the sheriff who initially assists Burgade while Jorge Rivero plays Provo's right hand man.

This movie's an interesting cinematic study: It has all the right elements for a great Western, but it's curiously mediocre in execution. The screenplay was taken from Brian Garfield's 1971 novel "Gundown" and Garfield was on set for uncredited rewrites. If you're not familiar with him, he wrote the book that birthed the 1974 hit "Death Wish." Add to this a proved Western director and a great cast (How can you go wrong with Heston and Coburn?). Furthermore, the movie features authentic Arizona locations (where Garfield's from) with much of the story taking place in the rugged wilderness of the high country. Moreover, the film has a quality score. While Leonard Rosenman was supposed to compose an original score, it fell through and so the producers concocted a pastiche from four of Jerry Goldsmith's past compositions: "100 rifles" (1969), "Río Conchos" (1964), "Morituri" (1965) and "Stagecoach" (1966). This explains why the music sounds pleasantly familiar to those who've seen any of these movies. Lastly, this isn't a lame old-fashioned Western, it was shot in the gritty realistic style of Sam Peckinpah, one of Garfield's favorite directors, and, as such, there's a lot of wicked violence, including a rape scene.

Unfortunately the movie's only decent. There are some interesting bits interspersed throughout, but the characters come across as dull and the story's strangely un-compelling (your mind frequently wanders). Burgade (Heston) and Provo (Coburn) are two prime examples of the flat characters. The former's just an uninteresting person (the express opposite of Taylor in "Planet of the Apes") while the latter comes across as a one-dimensional vengeful villain whom Ricardo Montalban probably used as a prototype for his cartoony portrayal of Khan in 1982's "Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan" (which is in contrast to his fascinating portrayal of Khan in the 1966 episode "Space Seed").

Garfield complained about the title of the movie on the grounds that it was originally set to be called "Burgade" (again, from his novel "Gundown") and "The Last Hard Men" sounds like a porno flick, he argued. But both "Gundown" and "Burgade" are pretty dang generic sounding to me. At least "The Last Hard Men" ties into the theme of the film, which, incidentally, was nothing new at the time in light of "Once Upon a Time in the West" (1968), "The Wild Bunch" (1969), "Big Jake" (1971) and several others, not to mention "The Shootist" (1976), which came out a couple months after "The Last Hard Men." So I don't have a problem with the title. That said, I asked my wife if she wanted to see a Western and she replied "Which one?" I said, "The Last Hard Men." She responded, "Ooh baby, yes!"

The film runs 98 minutes and was shot in Arizona (too many places to cite).

GRADE: C

Reviewed by alexandre michel liberman (tmwest) 7 / 10

This western keeps you tense from beginning to end!

This western keeps you tense from beginning to end. reminding one of "High Noon". James Coburn is Zach Provo, the cold blooded killer set upon getting his revenge on lawman Sam Burgade (Charlton Heston). Barbara Hershey is Susan, Burgade's daughter and she will be what Provo will use as a prey to get to Burgade. Provo would be a better villain if he did not talk so much at the final scenes, I missed the laconic Britt from "The Magnificent Seven". The rape scene is shocking and adds emotion to the final showdown, which is not deceiving, but also not up to the expectations. Still, this is one of the best directed by Andrew McLaglen. Christopher Mitchum is Hal Brickman, Susan's boyfriend and he brings to mind Jeffrey Hunter in "The Searchers".

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