If you haven’t watched a lot of westerns, you’re not alone. You are, however, missing out. Westerns have an incredibly unique tone that you can’t really find anywhere else. Action, intrigue, and hot cowboys? Sign us up, please and thanks. Read on for some great movies to add to your TBW (is that a thing?) and an exciting new romance novel that we know you’re going to love.
1. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
The Guardian called this one “the mother of all buddy movies,” and for good reason. This 1969 flick stars Robert Redford and Paul Newman, and is (sort of) based on a true story! From knife fights to dynamite, this film is absolutely action-packed as Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid rob trains and attempt to further their criminal career. It has 90% on Rotten Tomatoes, so it will not disappoint!
2. Once Upon a Time in the West
Brattle Theatre Film Notes states that this film is “one of the most important Westerns ever made.” While the plot is a little slower than some of the other action-packed films in the genre, this one is undoubtedly worth the watch for anyone looking to get into Westerns. Once Upon a Time in the West follows a gritty battle for a patch of land and the ensuing chaos that hits the fictional town of Flagstone. Swoon over stars Claudia Cardinale, Henry Fonda and Jason Robards in this classic film.
3. Back to the Future Part 3
I know, I know, but I’m not taking BTTF off of this list! In the third installment of the best trilogy ever made, Marty McFly and Doc Brown travel back to the old west. This film has everything you could ever want: Western flair, and Michael J. Fox. This film has a ton of conventional Western elements: a saloon, horseback riding, a dramatic train chase, and of course, a quick draw gun duel. Check this one out if you like your Western with a side of SciFi.
4. Django Unchained
A Tarantino classic! Love him or hate him, there is no denying that Tarantino makes…memorable films. This one has an all-star cast, from Jamie Foxx to Leonardo DiCaprio to Samuel L. Jackson. If you want to dip your toe into Westerns with this more modern film, Django is a great place to start! Jamie Foxx stars at Django, a man hunting down the most dangerous criminals out there. A bonus? There’s a love story there, too!
Honorary Mention: Silver Creek Fire by Lindsay McKenna
Speaking of love stories, Silver Creek Fire by Lindsay McKenna has a great one! This new book, the first in the Silver Creek series has more than a little Western flair. When Lea decides to run away from her hometown, which has started to feel like a trap, she finds herself in the midst of a great mystery on the ranch she is renovating. Can she and her “cowboy” make it through unscathed and find their HEA? You’ll have to read to find out. Hollywood, are you listening!? We have the next great Western right here.
Of course, we had to dream-cast our new favorite western!
Abigail Spencer as Lea: You might recognize Abby from her starring role on NBC’s Timeless, or more recently, from her leading role on Reprisal. She plays sweet and intense with equal skill, and we think she would make a perfect Lea. We can definitely see her tying her hair up and getting to work on a renovation project.
Jake Gylenhaal as Logan: Jake Gylenhaal has been acting for many years, but as far as we know, he hasn’t played a cowboy. The time is now! We know that Jake would portray Logan’s tragic backstory perfectly. He’d also nail the protective boyfriend role like no other.
Which great movies did we miss? Let us know in the comments and don’t forget to add Silver Creek Fire by Lindsey McKenna to your TBR ASAP! Yeehaw.
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