Cincinnati Babyhead

Speaks his mind on music & movies!

Movie : Hombre


Another western (film) that is right up there with Babyhead’s favorites.  The movie opens with three Apaches corralling a herd of wild horses.   A young man has ridden out to deliver a message to John Russell who turns out to be one of the Apaches.  He finds out  that his father has died and left him a boarding house which he has no interest in.  Jesse who is running the house offers to go into partnership but Russell declines.  He decides to sell it for a herd of horses.  We find out that Russell was raised by the Apaches and has no interest in taking on the white-man ways.

Russell and a group of six others hire the stage to get to where they are all going.  It’s a cross section of people.  An elderly Indian agent, Dr. Favor and his wife, a young married couple,  Jesse the boarding house gal,  Grimes a prick and Mendez the driver.

They set out on their ride over some very rough, dry and hot country.  We find out that Grimes  has intentions of robbing Dr. Favor who has a wad of cash that he has stolen from the Indians who he was supposed to be helping.  Grimes’ men eventually catch up with the stage.  The robbery takes place but Russell throws a wrench into the plan and the tables are turned with some interesting consequences.

CB was totally caught up in this film from the opening until the end.  So many things came together to make this a great movie.  Martin Ritt’s direction,  James Wong Howe’s  (Gordies cousin?) cinematography, the writing, editing and performances.







Ritt made his work easy with his casting choices.  All the supporting players are top notch.  Martin Balsam, Frank Silvera, Barbara Rush.  Frederic March as Dr Favor plays him as a cold , heartless bastard.  Great work Freddy!  If Richard Boone isn’t the president of the bad guy club he should be.  All CB can say is he is all sweaty , ugly, nasty meanness.  Don’t make them like Richard anymore.  Diane Cilento’s Jesse is  great casting .  She plays her with compassion, truth, vulnerability and honesty.  (Similar to Patricia Neal in Hud, another Ritt film).  CB loves women characters like this.  No bullshit.  Paul Newman plays Russell with understated strength.  He has lots going on inside but doesn’t try to play it all.  When he speaks it’s just a matter of fact.  Not a lot of emotion but it works.  He has the chops to pull it off.  CB loves his work in Hombre.  One of Paul’s best roles.

CB has to give a special note to Irving Ravetch and Harriet Frank Jr.  Their screenplay and dialogue are fantastic.  The dialogue is sparse and real.  CB ‘s style.  It helps that they were working off an Elmore Leonard novel  (‘Dutch’ is a Babyhead favorite).

CB recommends you jump on the stage with these characters and go for a ride on a good story.  Don’t forget to bring some water you might get thirsty.



4 comments on “Movie : Hombre

  1. yeahanotherblogger
    February 13, 2017

    Paul Newman was one of my fave actors. Don’t know how I’ve never seen Hombre, but I haven’t.
    I think my favorite movie starring PN is Hud. Wow, that is a powerful and superb flick.

    Liked by 1 person

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      February 13, 2017

      CB is of the opinion that Newman got better as he got older. I’d just be repeating myself with ‘Hombre’. If you’re a Newman fan and a film fan it’s a no brainer. I think ‘Hud’ was where he started to find it. I did a take on that movie earlier. Patricia Neal is a treasure. I love the dialogue in ‘Hombre’ (or lack of it) .Check it out Neil, I’ll spring for the popcorn.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. greenpete58
    February 15, 2017

    Thanks for reviewing this fine Western, CB. Newman, March, Boone, Cilento… all give memorable performances. Barbara Rush, also. She was dragged off her throne at the end, wasn’t she?? Even Frank Silvera (Boone’s Mexican sidekick) was enjoyable. And the atmospheric, understated music hits all the right notes. The photo at the end of the movie always haunted me. I researched it not long ago. He was a real-life New Mexican kid (“Jimmy McKinn”) who was kidnapped by Apaches, then later resisted when whites rescued him.

    “Hey, hombre!”

    Liked by 1 person

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      February 15, 2017

      “Hey Hombre!”. I can hear Silvera say that as clear as day. You had this film as one of your top “Westerns” on one of your takes (a good one by the way). Poor Barbara. Newman’s Character didn’t have much sympathy for her. Not much wrong with this flick. “Understated” is the word for this movie. You added a couple nice touches, the music and the stills they used help set the tone. I was just talking about the use of stills in film last night. Nice to hear from you Pete. (“Jimmy McKinn”. What a great seed for a film. Thanks for that).

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: