In Memoriam 1942 – 2013 “Roger Ebert loved movies.”

RogerEbert.com

Thumb can forgive

Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Can You Ever Forgive Me? comes from a place of understanding and love that few other biopics do, and it makes this difficult character a…

Thumb halloween poster

Halloween

Do you know the biggest sin of the new Halloween? It’s just not scary. And that’s one thing you could never say about the original.

Other Reviews
Review Archives
Thumb xbepftvyieurxopaxyzgtgtkwgw

Ballad of Narayama

"The Ballad of Narayama" is a Japanese film of great beauty and elegant artifice, telling a story of startling cruelty. What a space it opens…

Other Reviews
Great Movie Archives

Reviews

Rough Night in Jericho

  |  

The advertising campaign for "Rough Night in Jericho" asks the question "Who says they don't make Westerns like they used to?" I can't figure out if this meant to inspire praise or forestall criticism, but one thing's for sure: This is the kind of Western they used to make, all right.

For one thing, the deputy's name is Jace. Now when you stop to think about it. Jace is a name you don't hear much anymore, except in the kind of Western they used to make. The girl is named Molly, which is a common enough name, but she makes up for it by putting her hand on her hip a lot, saying "damn" and calling men by both of their names.

Advertisement

For example, at one point Molly, portrayed by Jean Simmons, says to Dean Martin: "You get off this property, Alex Flood." Just roll that around on your tongue for a moment. About the only people who still call each other by both names are stars in Westerns, and announcers on radio commercials ("That's right, Art Linkletter! And, folks etc., etc.").

There is also a plot pretty much like the Western plots of old. A bad man (Dean Martin) comes into town and takes over. He has the assistance of "the boys," who strangle ladies with chains and, in short, are pretty good at convincing everyone they mean business.

The bad guy takes over a ranch, a gold mine, a herd of cattle and a saloon, thus neatly encompassing the economy of the old West. But he can't take over the stagecoach line, which is run by Miss Simmons. Whenever he tries, she put her hand on her hip and says "You get off this property, Alex Flood." That settles his hash.

A handsome young gun-fighter (George Peppard) and an old ex-sheriff with whiskers (John McIntire) are brought in by Molly to run Alex Flood out of town, and after they drink a lot of whiskey and get in a couple of fights and Peppard falls in love with her, why, that's more or less what they do. I'd tell you how it turns out, but shucks you oughta be able to fill in that part yourself.

Martin plays his standard character fairly well, although he isn't in most of the movie. Peppard and Miss Simmons play their standard characters pretty well and you can guess what Slim Pickens does can't you? If you haven't seen a Western in 40 years, go see "Rough Night in Jericho" and catch up.

Popular Blog Posts

Who do you read? Good Roger, or Bad Roger?

This message came to me from a reader named Peter Svensland. He and a fr...

Netflix’s Terrifying, Moving The Haunting of Hill House is Essential Viewing

A review of Mike Flanagan's new horror series based on the Shirley Jackson novel, The Haunting of Hill House.

Always Leave 'Em Laughing: Peter Bogdanovich on Buster Keaton, superheroes, television, and the effect of time on movies

Peter Bogdanovich, film historian and filmmaker, talks about Buster Keaton, the subject of his new documentary.

Why The Godfather, Part II is the Best of the Trilogy

A look back at one of the best films of all time.

Reveal Comments
comments powered by Disqus