Although mostly recognized as one of the once-dominant movie genres, western movies represent so much more than an ostensible depiction might hint. A cowboy you might recall upon hearing the denomination used to stand for so much more than simple imagery based on insufficient and obsolete movie reviews. So, read the following lines and see in which ways western movies have changed over the decades.

In a nutshell, we could divide the whole western saga into 3 specific stages. Without question, all three speak about the peculiar representation of the western way of life. Just before we advance to our list, we should emphasize that the whole western pomp was not reserved for the theaters alone. Moreover, the genre inspired numerous novelists and musical artists as well, but that is a story for another time.

Classic Western


You cannot and should not imagine the period which started in the early 1930s without the two Johns. Wayne was in charge of shooting the bad guys and taking the girls, while Ford took care that everything the first mentioned did ends up on a movie tape. Even they did not start the genre, they made it immortal over the next several decades. However, it was in the silent movie era that the western draws its roots from and dates back from as early as the 1st decade of the 20th century. The main enemies were Native Americans and the white guy was in charge of finding their way to impose justice.

Revisionist Western


They say that the best westerns ever to be filmed are 3 parts of “the Dollars Trilogy”, a masterpiece by Sergio Leone, backed up by an otherworldly soundtrack composed by Ennio Morricone. Even though they were not filmed in the mainland USA, but Italy, as most spaghetti westerns, they have branded the sixties as the new time reserved for novelties. The movies from this period inspired other western aficionados to try their luck in interpreting the genre that originated in the Hollywood golden era and revise them additionally in the years to come. One of the main protagonists is nobody else but mister Clint Eastwood, who helped shape the era leading to the contemporary period with more than 20 genre-associated roles.



Also known as contemporary western, neo western’s main influence depicts the time long gone via the eyes of different protagonists. Back in the days, you could not imagine an African-American stealing the show, which is exactly what Quentin Tarantino did with “Django Unchained”. Also, modern-day era western movie protagonists were portrayed utterly different than their predecessors from the early thirties. According to Scott J Cooper, you can most vividly experience what we mean if you closely analyze the “Hostiles” with Christian Beal as Joseph Blocker. This era gave the cowboys a chance to be presented as human beings, even though they sometimes manifest superhuman abilities, as Django did, but that was all a part of the necessary artistic expression and fits the story completely.

Hope that you have enjoyed a swift journey from the beginning of the 20th century to contemporary times. Western is a comprehensive genre that keeps evolving with time, and the chances the trend will continue shapeshifting no matter what are major.

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