- Acting of Lead Performers
- Acting of Supporting Cast
- Music Score
- Title Sequence
- Historical Importance
- Would You Recommend?
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- Dashiell B.
This first film with director Mann & star Stewart literally reinvented the Western genre. Stewart tracks down the man who has stolen his prized rifle, great work from Winters' saloon singer & Duryea's robber; keep an eye out for Rock Hudson & Tony Curtis. As with their future films together, Mann & Stewart made the west a more bitter & cynical time, but this film in particular is entertaining, grouping all the traditional characters from the genre. A magnificent film in every way. I give it a 4.5/5.
Noir Western from Anthony Mann
- Robert S. Gilmore
After returning from combat duty as a squadron commander during World War II, "Jimmy" Stewart was now "James" Stewart and somehow the light, almost comic persona associated with his prewar films had been replaced with a new seriousness. The whole world was changing and the western was no exception. Anthony Mann had made many of the key films in the noir cycle and he populated his westerns with many of the themes inherent in his non-period work. The plot of Winchester 73 in fairly well known (Man wins gone in contest. Man's gun is stolen by his archenemy. Man searches for gun. etc.) what is interesting are the themes that populate this "oater"--desperation, displacement,cowardice, alienation--were not typical western fare up to this point. "Winchester 73" is the western form all grown up and searching for meaning.
A rifle used as a metaphor
When you think of great Western actors you think of course, "The Duke" John Wayne, or Clint Eastwood, but I think a great Westerner was James Stewart. In Winchester '73 James character was a natural blend of peaceful humanitarium mixed with a rugged edge. Something audiences never seen with Jimmy before. Sure, he played a high energy, high impact roll in Mr. Smith goes to Washington, but there was no rugged quality because of the nature of the film. A good Western has to have that rugged quality. Seeing Rock Hudson and Tony Curtis in this film gives the viewer a look at their talents very early in their careers. A pre-rise to stardom if you will. The premise to this story was kind of unique. The main essential was about a certain type of a gun and who ever had it became larger than life. Whomever didnt have it wanted it. Winchester '73 is a classic of that genre... .
Rock Hudson and Tony Curtis
- Linda Roy
I noticed both Tony Curtis and Rock Hudson is small parts in this movie. How early in each of their careers was this movie?
One of the great Westerns of the 50's
This remains one of my fondest films from the 1950's. The cinematography by William Daniels is excellent. The film is chock-full of Freudian themes - a wonderfule example of the emergence and rebirth in American Cinema of the 'complex' Western that was to eventually emerge.