No Country for Old Men: Ride the High Country (1962) and The Ballad of Cable Hogue (1970)

|MH Rowe| The most important thing in a Sam Peckinpah western is the automobile. Cars are the essential metaphor, at least when it comes to his crudely grand and murderous epic The Wild Bunch (1969), but also when you consider his first classic film Ride the High CountryContinue reading

A Head’s Tale: The Emotional Journey of Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia

Bennie, white male in dirty beige suit, pointing a pistol with right hand, holding bag with Head of Alfredo Garcia in left hand.

|Lucas Hardwick| Everyone has a head and we’re all kind of obsessed with them; so obsessed, in fact, that the conceit of removing it forcefully will never not be the most macabre form of dismemberment. After all, decapitation was a rather popular crime deterrent in the Dark Ages. Continue reading

Scent, Sense, and Senselessness in Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia

Bennie sits in a dimly lit bar, wearing sunglasses and a patterned jacket.

|Sophie Durbin| Bennie (Warren Oates) drives across the Mexican countryside in a sweaty white suit stained with blood and dirt. Gasping for air, he swats flies from his passenger, a decaying human head in a burlap sack. He’s speaking to the head as if it’s the most normal… Continue reading

The Wild Bunch: Between Companionship and Despair

A man in a hat (Ernest Borgnine) stares down the barrel of his rifle in "The Wild Bunch."

|Rowan A. Smith| The Wild Bunch was a movie that for many years sat for me in a category most film-lovers are very familiar with: “I’ll get to it.” When I was a teenager, I watched a lot of the most beloved Westerns and didn’t find many I enjoyed. It wasn’t until I was in my late twenties… Continue reading