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445 Ratings

El Dorado

Directed by Howard Hawks
United States, 1966


Hired gunman Cole Thornton turns down a job with Bart Jason as it would mean having to fight an old sheriff friend.

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El Dorado Directed by Howard Hawks
As opposed to the generally restrained, straight-ahead physicality of Wayne and Mitchum, Caan is readily animated as the action dictates. On an evening watch, while Wayne and Mitchum are narrowly rigid in their determined demeanor, Caan is cagey, looking up, looking around, surveying the street in full body twists and turns. El Dorado is not a young man’s film, but when the emphasis shifts to Caan, he sure makes it seem that way.
May 20, 2017
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Some scenes were improvised on a whim. Robert Mitchum kept forgetting which side he was supposed to limp on, leading Hawks to insert a line poking fun at the continuity problems. Occasionally, the movie seems to have trouble deciding whether it’s a remake or a parody of Rio Bravo. It’s not that Hawks’ style rescues El Dorado; it’s that it integrates all of these problems, producing a movie that feels effortlessly complete and consistent, despite being, frankly, all over the place.
May 30, 2014
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From the first scene of this 1966 Western… the director Howard Hawks makes a familiar plot resound strangely with a new set of sexual overtones… His aging stars start tall and proud but end up as battered wrecks—Hawks shows how to be as funny as a crutch—and the romantic hero turns out to be a poetry-spouting young dandy (James Caan) on his own vengeful mission, who scatters his buckshot widely.
October 21, 2013
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