Thursday, September 20, 2018

The Outlaw Josey Wales (1976)

Pax and Michael talk about Pax's second-favorite Western of all time; a movie that Michael has never seen before. But there's also time for quick reviews of 1953's The Lawless Breed and Daniel A Edwards' book, Billy the Kid: An Autobiography.

1 comment:

  1. Great to see an in depth review of "Outlaw Josey Wales". I learned a bit from it and am glad you pointed out how many of the secondary characters had agency in their actions. For instance:
    - Jamie when they're in the swamp and he tricks the two ambushers about having gold.
    - Little Moonlight blocking pursuit in the town when they come across the carpetbagger again.
    - Lone Watie in multiple places

    A few extra things about Jamie and Fletcher which also help explain the plot.
    1. After Jamie and Josey escape the Union massacre of the guerrilla band Fletcher explains that he has to go along since Josey will blame him for the massacre and that Josey is a Missourian who would carry out a blood feud. IF Fletcher does not go along and make sure Josey gets killed Fletcher himself will not be safe again.

    2. Jamie saw Fletcher with Terrill and the Senator before Terrill shot him and mentions same to Josey. Josey states that he did not expect that - and it pretty much cements that Fletcher is correct in that Josey would include him in any revenge plans.

    (An interesting question about Fletcher is where and what did he find out in Santa Rio that makes him indirectly offer Josey the opportunity to end the feud.)

    Lone Watie also is useful in the latter part of the movie in explaining a number of Josey's actions since Josey rarely says what he is going to do himself. He explains that Josey's trip to see Ten Bears is quite possibly suicidal, but possibly also the only way to protect the farm via killing Ten Bears. He also explains that Josey leaving for Mexico is probably not going to result in his ever returning despite saying he might. This is also a clear indication that Josey's thought processes have changed from vengeance towards doing what is necessary to protect the "new" family regardless of the personal sacrifices he may need to make. The last modified by Terrill appearing and settling the main revenge target followed by meeting Fletcher in Santa Rio and providing closure on that as well.

    And given the journey that Josey had essentially completed with a great deal of closure the character really does not need a sequel.