Earlier this week my son & I went to the latest Hollywood effort of the Seven Samurai.
Seven Samurai (1954)
The Magnificent Seven (1960)
Return of the Magnificent Seven (1966)
Guns of the Magnificent Seven (1969)
The Magnificent Seven Ride (1972)
The Magnificent Seven (2016)
The latest version for me is so politically correct that it is a pure Saturday afternoon matinee film of my childhood. The hero shoots the bad guy’s gun out of his hand, the goodies never miss with hand guns, and use rifles that fire such distances with such accuracy that it brought back my ability when I was a six-year-old cowboy – I never missed either.
The most noticeable influence for me was the politically correctness of the film.
The leader is a black American (Yul Brynner in the 1960 film))
His off sider is white American (Steve McQueen – 1960 film)
We have an ex sharp shooter form the civil war with ‘problems’ of using his gun to shoot people. He’s not all that keen on Mexicans,
So we have a Mexican, who is not sure of his skills. (Robert Vaughn in the original 1960 film)
We also have an Asian knife thrower (I think James Coburn is the closest in the 1960 film, but he wasn’t Asian).
This time we have something new, a ‘red’ Indian (Comanche) called Red Harvest who is painted red . . . .
Even the baddies have a red Indian, just one, out of what seems to be hundreds on the baddies side.
Don’t let’s forget the leading lady – according to her she has more balls than any man in town as she sets off to look for the Magnificent Seven to help reclaim the town, which is being threatened by a bunch of white Americans. (Mexicans in the 1960 film)
Of course the town people are frightened and only our heroine and one other has the guts to leave and to look for the ‘seven’.
Our heroine is taught how to shoot and uses her new skills to great effect right up to one of the final scenes. The feminist movement should be happy with her character.
Plenty of gun play, bows and arrows, knife throwing, explosions, and not one horse is shot or injured, only the riders – and they are bad guys so they are fair game.
The film has so many ‘tokens’ that I think it has covered everyone who might be offended.
We attended the lunchtime session at 12.50 pm, which allows pensioners like me to have my lunch at 10.30 am, so as not to miss the film. Many other patrons had the same idea, because I think my forty year old son was the youngest person in the cinema. The cinema could seat about two hundred people or more, but I doubt that the cinema would cover their costs, because there were only fifteen people in the whole place – pensioners $8.50 and my son paid $21!
Based on the audience it was obviously a popular film . . .