"The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance is a story at once emotionally intimate and chillingly detached. That contradiction is the key to an art that, although it seems steeped in nostalgia and sentimentality, is finally marked by an arctic clarity". Geoffrey O'Brien
|The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence (1962) - John Ford|
|Stray Dog (1948) - Akira Kurosawa|
Akira Kurosawa's love & study of early John Ford films is well documented. Lesser known is Kurosawa's substantial influence on later Ford films. Because of this, 'The Shadow' emerged in Ford's pictures to represent an internal struggle rarely seen in the Western genre. These films were more Spiritual than the "psychological Westerns" of the fifties, and more mature than the cynical, ultra violent narratives of the sixities & seventies (that Tarantino worships). 'The Searchers' is the obvious masterpiece, but 'The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance' reveals new layers with each watch. It's a truly reconciled narrative that successfully manages to humanize the legend of John Wayne.