PECKINPAH, Sam

(1925–1984)
   At one point in The Wild Bunch (1969), Angel asks Pike, “Would you give guns to someone to kill your father or your mother or your brother?” Pike responds, “Ten thousand cuts an awful lot of family ties.” Such an attitude set the tone for the film that did more to change not just Westerns but action films in general. Peckinpah’s The Wild Bunch was probably the most violent Western and perhaps the most violent American film in its time. It was not so much the quantity of killing in the film but the quality of killing—the amount of blood spilled and splashed, the stylized slow-motion scenes of death. Once all restraint was gone, Hollywood films never looked back. Peckinpah, like other directors, got his training in television Westerns in the 1950s, directing episodes of Gunsmoke and The Rifleman series among many others. Ride the High Country (1962), starring Randolph Scott in his last role, was Peckinpah’s first cinema Western. While a solid film, it did not show much of the Peckinpah style that would surface in the next few years. He followed that with Major Dundee in 1965, another good Western in the classic Western vein. But the world had changed greatly between Peckinpah’s first Western and 1969 when he released The Wild Bunch. Italian Westerns had attacked the very core classic Western values and styles. The Vietnam War was tearing the American culture apart, and riots in the streets were commonplace. Evening news accounts of the war were showing America live images of bloody combat it had never seen before. When the film came out, it immediately captured a receptive audience. Its repudiation of all the unquestioned Western myths and, by extension, all the unquestioned American myths reinforced the chaos pervading the culture itself. Peckinpah followed with other successful Westerns and non-Westerns, all continuing the assault on cultural myths. Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid (1973), for example, questions the famous outlaw legend. Kris Kristofferson, just hitting his popularity as a songwriter and singer, played Billy the Kid, swaggering with style in this antimyth Western. James Coburn, just coming away from his cocky performances in Waterhole \#3(1967) and Fistful of Dynamite,aka Duck, You Sucker (1971), played Pat Garrett.

Historical Dictionary of Westerns in Cinema. . 2012.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Peckinpah, Sam — ▪ American director byname of  David Samuel Peckinpah   born Feb. 21, 1925, Fresno, Calif., U.S. died Dec. 28, 1984, Inglewood, Calif.       American motion picture director and screenwriter known for spectacular, violent westerns.… …   Universalium

  • Peckinpah, Sam — • ПЕКИ НПА (Peckinpah) Сэм (наст. имя Сэмюэл Дейвид) (21.2.1925 28.12. 1984)    амер. режиссёр, сценарист. В 1950 окончил ф т драматич. иск ва в ун те Юж. Калифорнии. Работал монтажёром, ставил многочисл. телевиз. сериалы (гл. обр. в жанре… …   Кино: Энциклопедический словарь

  • Peckinpah, Sam —    см. Пекинпа, Сэм …   Режиссерская энциклопедия. Кино США

  • Peckinpah — Sam Peckinpah Sam Peckinpah Naissance 21 février 1925 Fresno  États Unis Nationalité(s) …   Wikipédia en Français

  • PECKINPAH (S.) — PECKINPAH SAM (1926 1984) Né à Madera County (Californie), petit fils d’un chef indien, Sam Peckinpah est d’abord assistant de Donald Siegel avant de voler de ses propres ailes (New Mexico [The Deadly Companions , 1961]. Coups de feu dans la… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Sam Peckinpah — [Sam Peckinpah] (1925–85) a US film ↑director who was sometimes criticized for the amount of realistic violence shown in his films. These include Major Dundee (1965), ↑Wild Bunch, Straw Dogs (1971), Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid …   Useful english dictionary

  • Sam Peckinpah — (* 21. Februar 1925 in Fresno, Kalifornien; † 28. Dezember 1984 in Inglewood, Kalifornien) war ein US amerikanischer Regisseur. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Filmisches Schaffen 2 Hauptthemen 3 …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Sam Peckinpah — Données clés Naissance 21 février 1925 Fresno, Californie  États Unis Nationalité …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Sam Peckinpah — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Sam Peckinpah Nombre real David Samuel Peckinpah Nacimiento 21 de febrero de 1925 Fresno, Califor …   Wikipedia Español

  • Sam Peckinpah's "Salad Days" — is a Monty Python s Flying Circus episode from season 3 (episode 33). In a fine example of the Python team s fondness of the double spoof , this third series sketch targets both the genteel stage musical Salad Days and the work of the… …   Wikipedia

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