One of the most common subgenres of Westerns looks back nostalgically on a West that has gone forever. What is lamented is not so much a passing of time as a passing of a way of life. In one sense, all Westerns yearn for a return to the days of yesteryear, but end-of-the-West films such as The Shootist (1976) and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) are typically situated in the period between the end of the old era and the beginning of the new century. Often the heroes are characters who lived their lives fully in the old days and are trying to cope with the new ways.

Historical Dictionary of Westerns in Cinema. . 2012.

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