The Greatest Western Films of All-Time, and What Made Them so Revolutionary

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We’re all familiar with the Western film genre. It was once the quintessentially American genre, as it appealed to our national identity and heritage. What makes a genre can come down to a few things that have already been proven to be a hit with audiences: the visual tropes and iconography (e.g. whips and horses), archetypal characters (e.g. outlaws and saloon girls) and various plot elements (e.g. the threat of Indians on the warpath).

We know what we’re getting with a Western (showdown between good and evil, anyone?!). Western films practically defined masculinity in the 20th century. These are some of America’s all-time favorites, including why they’re significant and how they evolved the genre. Expect a lot of John Wayne.

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