The assessment of the Handbuch der Katholischen Filmkritik: “A westerner accompanied by a woman and a contract killer searches for his lost brother. The trip ends in senseless, absurd and fatal conflicts. An allegorical late western that consistently dismantles the genre’s traditional values: The focus is not on heroism, individualism and cooperation, but on despair, loss of identity and self-destruction.” The assassination of Kennedy had a huge mental influence on the production process of the film, resulting in paranoia that infiltrates everything. —Arsenal
Monte Hellman (born July 12, 1932, in New York City, New York) is an American film director, producer, and film editor.
Hellman is among a group of directing talent mentored by Roger Corman, who produced several of the director’s early films. Hellman’s most critically acclaimed film to date has been Two-Lane Blacktop (1971), a road movie that was a box office failure at the time of its initial release but has subsequently turned into a perennial cult favorite.1 Hellman’s two acid westerns starring Jack Nicholson, Ride in the Whirlwind and The Shooting, both shot in 1965 and released directly to television in 1968, have also developed cult followings, particularly the latter. A third western, China 9, Liberty 37 (1978), was far less successful critically, although it too has its admirers, as do Cockfighter (1974) (aka Born to Kill) and Iguana (1988). In 1989 he directed the straight-to-video slasher film Silent Night, Deadly Night 3: Better Watch… read more
Como si Hiroshi Teshigahara hubiese dirigido un western, Hellman construye su película con los mismos elementos que componen a ese desierto que filma: aridez, calentamiento y mesetas. Cambiando algunas claves del western americano en pos de aumentar el grado de existencialismo, The Shooting se ve hoy como un complejo experimento de un director que pocas veces obtuvo el reconocimiento que merece.
I appreciate the application of Camus' theories to the western genre, and the general lack of exposition. However, other than Oates and Nicholson, the acting was just plain bad. The overacting present in the minimal dialog detracted heavily from the ideas that were meant to spring forward through the sparseness.