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יום שני, 22 באוקטובר 2012

Billy the Kid (The Movie) – A Terrifically Entertaining Western

Billy the kid is one of the most spectacular looking and outstanding Technicolor western epics. The movie is helmed by director David Miller. Billy the kid also happens to be the first western that starred the legendary Robert Taylor. The film is loosely based on a popular book named “The Saga of Billy the Kid” by the famous author Walter Noble Burns. The premise revolves around a kid who is a cold blooded and ruthless killer, but once he comes under a rancher, he transforms to a great extent. The dialogues are cleverly written and delivered to perfection by Robert Taylor in a true southpaw style. When you watch Billy the kid, you will find an interesting theme in it. In the movie, Robert Taylor plays a character of a right-handed individual, but he packs his pistol on the left hip. When Chief villain Dan Hickey (played brilliantly by Gene Lockhart) noticed this, he asks Billy, “Left-handed, eh?” Billy replies with a straight face, “I'm saving my right to shake hands with friends”. This is indeed one of the cleverest dialogues you may have heard in any westerner. Billy comes in contact with Gene Lockhart when he goes into the town, to save his friend Pedro and accidentally falls into the company of crook Dan Hickey. He starts working for Dan Hickey and subsequently starts making troubles for rancher Sherwood (Ian Hunter). In “Billy the kid, Hunter plays the character of rancher Sherwood effortless and yet flawlessly. He is great in his laid back attitude, and when he convinces Billy to stop running and come to peace with himself. It would not be wrong to say that Billy the kid is not the best western of Robert Taylor, but it has certainly opened a lot of opportunities for him as far as the westerns are concerned. Brian Donlevy plays Billy's friend and a ranch foreman and later-on the marshal. There is another interesting character in Billy the kid named Mary Howard who plays the sister of Hunter and is engaged to Brian Donlevy; however, the interesting bit is that she is surprisingly infatuated with Billy. Though they never engage in any romantic relationship in “Billy the kid, you will truly love their innocent relationship. Billy the kid becomes excessively violent in certain parts. For instance; when hickey’s people kill Hunter, Billy becomes so furious that he goes on a rampage and kills all, and at the end he shoots Hickey in the back. The last scene of Billy the kid is truly breathtaking; when Billy is impatiently waiting for Brian Donlevy, what you will find truly awe-inspiring is the reflection of his blue eyes in the darkened shed. “Billy the kid has further strengthened the fact that Robert Taylor can play the good and evil characters equally well. It’s worth mentioning the fact that Taylor prepared hardly for the role of Billy; for instance, he practiced for many months to draw with his left hand. The good thing is that all the efforts put by all the cast and crew members are evidenced from the quality of this great movie. The bottom line is; Billy the kid is a must-watch movie for all the die-hard fans of westerns.