Monday, November 14, 2011

Valdez is Coming

I've been watching this on the Westerns channel of late, and it's another of my favorites.  Burt Lancaster plays the lone hero from the Elmore Leonard novel wonderfully--a Mexican American sheriff who is tricked into killing a man and leaving the man's Indian wife a widow.  All he wants is a hundred dollars from the men who tricked him so that he can get the dead man's wife back to her people.

When he goes asking politely for the money, he's beaten up and tied to a cross which he hauls across the desert on his back in one of the best torture scenes in all of western cinema.  You'd think Valdez would want revenge for that, wouldn't you?  Nope.  He still just wants the one hundred dollars for the dead man's wife.

And how gets it is very satisfying indeed.

In the "now for something entirely different" category, I've heard this Longarm, due out in a couple of weeks, is dang good, as well.  The writer tells me that all the friendly encounters are based on personal experience, but if you knew the jake like I do, you'd never believe a word he says!

(Still, I got a feelin' the book ain't half bad and might even be worth reading.)


  1. Valdez is Coming has long been a favourite western of mine too. You're right about the torture seen being one of the best...

    Oh, yeah, I've had that book on order for sometime and expect it in the next week or so.

  2. Was Burt Lancaster ever in a bad movie?

    Valdez is Coming, however, was the man at his understated best. Talk about complex character; appearing to cowtow to the great gringo hacendado, but just plowing on until he gets exactly what he was seeking in the first place.

    And, gee, I don't think there was a bit of computer enhanced graphics either. Just larger than life characters, grit and all that scenery.

    About that Longarm writer. Wierd, really wierd. Don't know if I'd trust him in a dark alley or not.