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Big screen classics

Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid

James Coburn and Kris Kristofferson star in this playful western.

Image from Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid

USA 1973
Dir Sam Peckinpah
With James Coburn, Kris Kristofferson, Bob Dylan, Richard Jaeckel
Certificate 18

Peckinpah’s western pits hired lawman Garrett (Coburn) against his old friend William Bonney (Kristofferson), better known as the fugitive outlaw Billy the Kid. Deeply ambivalent in its attitudes, the film is at once playful and elegiac, sorrowing at the influence of big business and ‘progress’ on matters of loyalty and trust, and paying wry tribute to archaically ‘masculine’ notions of freedom and honour.


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