Rio Bravo (1959)

  • Howard Hawks directed & Dimitri Tiomkin did the music for this. So at the very least, it has that going for it.
  • What the movie doesn’t have going for it are the wobbly, yellow-orange block letters splashed across the opening credits. Gross.
  • That’s quite an entrance for Mr. Wayne. As the viewer, you’re like, ‘I don’t know if that man should be reaching his hand into that pot…’ and then all of the sudden JW’s there and is like, ‘NO! HE SHOULDN’T!!! And now I’ll kick this pot with my foot to further emphasize this point!’
  • Tensions are obviously very high in this town. Everyone seems very anxious to fight everyone, all the time.
  • Dean Martin is “the fellow the Mexicans used to call Borrachón.” Sensational!
  • So let me get this straight: there’s a large handful of outlaws wanting/waiting to spring Joe (Claude Akins) from the jail – and they’re not going to do it while the one goofball old man is left to guard him alone? Yeah, sure – that makes sense.
  • (Of course the goofball old man is played by Walter Brennan, and of course his character’s name is “Stumpy.”)
  • Wait, I’m sorry – Burdette (Nathan, played by John Russell) (wait, wait, wait – John Russell? …JOHN RUSSELL? As in Hombre?! Hahahaha!) (okay, sorry – I’ll move on) has “30 or 40” men? They can take the jail any goddamn time they want! “30 or 40 men” vs. Stumpy? Are you shitting me?
  • John Wayne to Angie Dickinson: ‘Hey yo girl – stop playing cards and wearing feathers.’ Girl’s like, ‘Hell no! I do what I want!’ Good for you, AD! I love when people sass JW!
  • Sweet moves, Borrachón!
  • (Apparently Borrachón’s other name is “Dude.” And no, I’m not making that up.)
  • Anyway, Dude just kicked some ass in the saloon & nabbed Wheeler (Ward Bond)’s killer. It was awesome.
  • “Aw, I’m not gonna hurt him,” says JW, less than 2 seconds after slamming his rifle into the man’s head. Classic.
  • Dude’s hat is attractive as hell. Pair that with Glenn Ford’s jacket from THE SHEEPMAN (1958), and you’ve got yourself a man!
  • The scene after Carlos (Pedro Gonzalez Gonzalez) (…Pedro Gonzalez Gonzalez? Wtf.) tells JW that Angie Dickinson (whose character does not yet have a name) stayed up all night guarding his door is great. JW & Angie Dickinson do a fabulous job in it.
  • “I’m glad we tried it a second time. It’s better when two people do it,” says Angie Dickinson. Howard Hawks, you know better than to recycle lines like that – even if they’re not verbatim! No one’s going to deliver that sort of line like Bacall does to Bogart in TO HAVE AND HAVE NOT (1944), and you damn well know it.
  • Having Burdette pay off those musicians to play the Mexican “No Mercy” tune on repeat is a nice touch.
  • Aw…John T. (JW) rescued Dude’s guns for him and kept ’em for him all this time! That’s adorable.
  • I don’t know that I want Dude to “take a bath and have a shave” – I think I like him better scruffy & caked in dirt!
  • …Well, I may stand corrected. He looks pretty sharp in his shiny clothes and classy black hat.
  • Ha! I love the JW + Angie Dickinson dynamic. Both actors really nailed this.
  • HA! Stumpy just shot a hole through Dude’s “new” black hat. Guess that point’s settled.
  • Badass plan, Mr. Colorado (Ricky Nelson). You’re a quick thinker, and I like that.
  • By the way, Angie Dickinson is fantastic.
  • YEAH!!! Dude’s back! And he’s dirty again! Things are looking up, my friends.
  • The only thing I wish was different about that singing scene is Colorado having a guitar – I wish he didn’t have one. The scene would play so much better if it was just them singing, with Stumpy on his harmonica. But…oh well. Can’t have everything.
  • “Oh hey, Feathers.” — Dude, to Angie Dickinson. I LOVE IT.
  • Dude – whenever you take a bath, bad things happen…you should’ve learned this by now! Stay dirty, my friend. Stay dirty.
  • Nice work in the jail, team. A+.
  • Dude’s a goddamn badass. He’s definitely my favorite.
  • The dynamite shooting scene is fucking awesome. I wonder who dreamed that one up.
  • Y’all, I’d better stop watching John Wayne movies – I keep finding ones I actually like.

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