"We are rough men and used to rough ways." — Bob Younger
Cowboys, stage coaches, gunfighters, saloons... it's hard to imagine anything more American than the trappings of Westerns, yet many of the most memorable movies of the genre were actually shot in Europe with mostly European casts and crews. In fact, the enduring popularity of Westerns owes a great deal to Italian director Sergio Leone, who not only introduced the world to a then-unknown squinty-eyed TV actor named Clint Eastwood, but started a craze with his "Spaghetti Westerns" that resulted in more than 600 Westerns being produced in Europe between 1960 and 1980 while American movie studios slowed down or stopped producing Westerns altogether.
Whatever the origin of the movie or the nationality of the director behind the camera, a good Western is one that transports us back to a wild, dangerous time, to a place where the people are nearly as harsh as the landscape and there were still amazing discoveries to be made by those with an adventurous spirit. Help us choose those movies that deserve to be called Westerns, those with true grit.
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