Research Paper on Hollywood Westerns

3 pages
712 words
George Washington University
Type of paper: 
Research paper
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The western genre consists of stories in the last half of the 19th century in America. The most famous Hollywood in the early 1900s running to 1960s was the western. The stories of interest in this paper are the Robbers and the Widow, Butch Cassidy Robs a Payroll Train, and Wyatt Earp Confronts a Mob. These westerns base on the American Frontier during the late 19th century, succeeding the civil war, with the geographical setting with wild and rugged rural terrain. These western films portray the wilderness conquest and natures subordination, all aiming for civilization. The specific settings of these stories are the isolated forts, isolated homestead, the saloon, ranch houses, jail, the main street of the small town and the livery stable. The characteristic features of these stories include hostility, violence and human genocides, guns and the gunfights, train robberies, horses, the shoot-outs and the distinctive clothing of the western.

The story about the Robbers and the Widow features the most famous outlaws of the Wild Wests, the two James brother Frank and Jesse. The two brothers were from the Confederate Army and were robbers at the stagecoaches and the trains. Their identification is what makes the widow welcome them warmly. They hide at the widows homestead and help her settle her mortgage while carrying on with their plans. The idea here is that many people wear masks to accomplish what they want. The story Butch Cassidy Robs a Payroll Train is a robbery story where Robert Parker is a notorious train robber and a cattle rustler. In the story, Parker is a cowboy, with a soiled sombrero, worn overalls, and high-heeled boots. Parker had languid tin-horns to help pass the time as the long event is awaited indicating that at criminals will try something to confuse the public about their real plans. He is courageous when Parker goes to a bar and takes bear on credit, and this means that him, with his boys relaxing outside, are up to no good. The team portrays courage in the train robbing despite the paymasters bodyguard having two big caliber revolvers.

The last story in this paper is on how Wyatt Earp confronts a mob. Wyatt is a gambler and a gunfighter who confronts a crowd, but due to his mightiness, the crowd disperses, indicating that the people who were gamblers were huge with frightening voices as well as skilled gunfighters.

Dating back a few decades ago, Hollywood has cut significantly on making the westerns. In the 1940s to 1970s, the favorite genre was the Western, but beginning 1980s, this has ground to a stop. The reason behind this is that the Westerns do not make profitable ventures because in the film market today, the budgets for producing even the mid-range films are high. In the 1940s running through the 1960s, there were radio shows and long-running television series in the American culture. The pop culture was common on the American frontier, but things did change, and the nation became more self-aware than before. People began to understand the struggle for the native American and political correctness started slipping away the white actor portraying the frontier. The Cultural impact of the West initiated the collision of American historians ideas.

Again, the Space Race beginning before and after the declaration of the JFKs, sending a person to the moon was another big blow to the Westerns of the Americans. The event encapsulated the attention of the American publics. People all over focused their attention on the stars compared to the Earths horizon. The evolution of the Americans then came with the birth of a new frontier, and the 1960s and 1970s westerns presented a more cynical view of the west. The stories of the Wild West were no more at their best, and the Western lore started to decline.

The use of cowboys as the characters in the westerns is falling. In the story of Butch Cassidy robbing the train payroll, the Cowboys are the characters. Todays films cover different genres, and this outdoes the American West. The challenging social and racial attitudes, the strict regulation and cost when using animals like horses in the films, and the limitations caused by the economic growth and history leave little space for the Western movies.


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