#60 The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962, John Ford)
Connie is adding her prediction in waves this time around. The prediction isn’t complete until we start the movie. Coming soon. Feel free to leave you prediction in the comments. I know it seems like they are broken and you get an error page after you submit, but the comments do go through.
“You know, I tried to get fancy with the last one and come up with a plot about the Passion of Joan of Arc that wasn’t just “it’s the passion of Joan of Arc.” I’ve learned my lesson. The Man who Shot Liberty Valance is a whodunit.”…(a few days later)… “This film answers two important questions: “Why? And what’s the reason for?” (Just prior to the screening) “It might be important because of its setting. For example, it might say something interesting about New York.”
Connie never wrote a response, but in another piece of writing for a soon to be announced project, I wrote this.
I’m flying east and last night I watched John Ford’s “Who Shot Liberty Valance.” Early in the film Jimmy Stewarts character intones (as only Jimmy Stewart can) “I followed Horace Greeley’s advice, ‘Go west young man. Go west and grow up with the country.’”1 And so he begins the story of a young idealistic lawyer settling in the West, before the railroad changed the town. It is, in part, the story of democracy, the story of development, the story of change. But it is also the story of two borders, the border between the violent West and the one defined by democratic institutions, schoolhouses, and churches.
American Film Institute #9 and Village Voice #3 — Vertigo, 1958
Originally published at posts/the-man-who.