Compare "Unforgiven" With The Earlier Westerns

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 11th grade August 2001

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Compare "˜Unforgiven with the earlier westerns You have seen in terms of context and content.

Western Films are the major defining genre of the American film industry, a eulogy to the early days of the expansive American frontier. They are one of the oldest, most enduring and flexible genres and one of the most characteristically American genres in their mythic origins - they focus on the West - in North America.

Unforgiven, winner of four Oscars, is one of Clint Eastwoods finest outing to date. Conforming to the western genre using a classic storyline set in Wyoming in the 1880's. With traditional themes of power, violence, revenge, survival and money which makes it easily depicted as a western fitting into its genre. Although it fits into the genre it often tackles and argues some of the issues which surround classic "˜The Searchers' and "˜Stagecoach', two classic westerns.

Unlike most typical locations for westerns, Unforgiven setting features fertile green lands whilst "˜Stagecoach' and "˜Searchers' is set in monument valley which looks barren and desert like.

It does however share similarities, which include having a town in which there is a saloon bar, sheriff and a prison.

Each of the three films deals with revenge. This is probably the most significant theme throughout all of the three films. "˜Stagecoach' and "˜Unforgiven' share a similarity in that both the "˜Ringo Kid' and "˜William Munny' aim to gain revenge for someone they were close to. They both claim their revenge at the end of the film and end the film as "˜heroes'. Ethan (John Wayne) in the "˜Searchers' however, claims unnecessary revenge to me. This is because of his hate towards the native Americans, and this can be seen throughout the film. This is significantly identified when Ethan plucks out the...