Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Best News of the Year

At long last, Sony is releasing a Budd Boetticher Box Set on November 4th that includes The Tall T, Decision at Sundown, Buchanan Rides Alone, Ride Lonesome, and Comanche Station. With Seven Men From Now available from Paramount for a few years now, all 6 features from the "Ranown" cycle of westerns that Boetticher and star Randolph Scott made together between 1956 and 1960 will be on DVD. Westbound (1959) is the only feature from the Boetticher-Scott duo that will not be available. Not produced by his Ranown production company, Budd disowned it later in his career.

Looking past the awful cover, and the deathly pallor of Boetticher's PhotoShopped face, this is a wonderful release, and a lot of thanks have to go to Martin Scorsese's The Film Foundation, which has partnered with Sony in releasing some of their ignored gems. Undoubtedly these would have languished for many more years without their intervention, despite the years of clamoring from fans.

Needless to say these are essential films, with Ride Lonesome and The Tall T two of the best Westerns ever made. Spare, bitter, and lean, they should be shown to anyone who claims that the Western genre didn't get "serious" until the '70s.

I realize this announcement is old news, but I just got back from vacation. And I have one tip for future Barcelona-goers. Go to Jamonisimo, a veritable museum of ham, and purveyors of the best pig I've ever eaten. Go, and rejoice:



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