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McCabe & Mrs. Miller

3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Language: German, English
  • Subtitles: German, English
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: German
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 3866152876

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
48 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars elegiac 11 Sep 2000
Format:VHS Tape
This is a beautifully shot movie, full of elegant, sombre tableaux. The interiors all look dark and brooding (a little like chiaroscuro oil paintings) The film works so well with the Leonard Cohen songs used in the score that the music seems to have been written with the film in mind.
On another level, this film is a rather jaundiced vision of the old west. There are no tall blond cowboys riding off into the sunset (a la "Shane"), or illiterate but charismatic characters (as in Sergio Leone's movies) This is a snowbound West full of chisellers, sleazy opportunists and madmen. Bleary saloon-bound no-hopers. Altman's vision owes a lot more to the "streetwise" movies of the 1970s than to anything ever made by John Ford. Imagine if Tom Waits had been a scriptwriter rather than a musician and you'll get some idea of what this film is like.
Altman presents the ragged backside of America's Western myth but with a certain tenderness and love for his characters and their inability to communicate with each other which is missing in a lot of his later films. I wouldn't hesitate to call it a minor masterpiece.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Travelling so long... 13 July 2008
"You who must leave everything that you cannot control, it begins with your family but soon it comes down to your soul".. and so Leonard Cohen's most haunting lines and ambigously beautiful melodies flow into this greatest of Altman movies.

This is a borderland America, a mystic new-born America, a brutal and tragic land in which life is cheap and full of strife.

The typical Altman charm is here, the melee of life spills from the screen, voices of extras treated with the same reverence as those of our heroes, Beatty and Christie.

These two stars are in their prime and portray a delicious frisson of romance. Beatty is full of lucky bravado, but retains a steadfast honour in love and as his life becomes at risk. Christie is at her cheekiest, cajoling her way through strife, a formidable character.

Which brings me to Leonard Cohen. A great songwriter and poet who peaked in the work for this film. The first time I saw this film I was blown away by the music, its enough to make a great film all by itself.

It is not all by itself though, it complements one of the great human Director's works. A brilliant piece of historical drama and a brilliant work of art.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Mud Splattered Truth. 4 Feb 2011
A lot of people tend to forget that Robert Altman's career started in TV, where with the likes of Sam Peckinpah he gained a good grounding in westerns. He directed episodes from "Bonanza", "US Marshall", "Maverick" and "Tenderfoot". These were all very traditional western offerings, but when he revisited this ground again in 1971, he decided as they say, to do something completely different. What he gave us was a very realistic, mud and rags vision of the west. I have seen many photos taken from that western period, and it is clear that Altman has done the same. The little settlement of Presbyterian Church, is an absolutely authentic looking ramshackle mining settlement, of the type that boomed and bust so often. Altman deliberately shot during the rains that are so prevalent in the far north west, to enhance the bleak look. He also cleverly pre fogged and filtered much of the film, to give it an aged and melancholy look. The final result is a most unusual and very fine film indeed, which simply shows the west for what it really was, and not the highly mythicised Hollywood version. Altman described it as an anti western, but far from debunking the traditional western, it merely shows us how it was 'warts and all'. Whether or not you want the warts is a matter of personal taste!

The story concerns McCabe a drifter/gambler, played by Warren Beatty, who rides into a one horse mining community in America's wild and wet far north west at the beginning of the twentieth century. It does not take him long to sniff out a business opportunity, employing some rather shopworn looking ladies of ill repute. He is soon joined in this business adventure by the feisty madam Mrs Miller, who has a few more women with her and a head for business.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A sad and fatalistic western. 28 Jan 2011
By S. Hyde
This is a quiet, sad, fatalistic western and one of the best things Warren Beatty ever did. Loosely based on a 1959 novel by Edmund Naughton, which Altman said contained all the standard western clichés which allowed him to "destroy all the myths of heroism." If you're looking for the usual western conventions then look elsewhere.
The film is set around the turn of the 20th century in the American Northwest. It opens to a washed-out wintry landscape and the music of Leonard Cohen. We see a stranger riding into a muddy mining town, he is McCabe (Beatty) and as he approaches the town he changes his clothes into something more dignified and gentlemanly. He has a reputation for killing a man, we never know if it's true, but it's enough to get him his own way with the simple town-folk. McCabe is a bit of a conman who sees himself as an entrepreneur and views this growing settlement as an opportunity for making money. He plans to build a casino and a brothel, and wants things his own way but he's a terrible organiser and when he tries running his operation from tents it proves chaotic.
In walks Julie Christie with her tough business sense and her conviction that his brothel needs her management. McCabe doesn't like alliances but he relents, she's so persuasive he really has no choice, but this is the only time in the film that lets anyone through his defenses. He's believes in old fashioned things such as honour and virtue but makes terrible business decisions in trying to keep his independence. He doesn't really have a vision so much as muddles through rejecting all relationships with others.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A masterpiece of the western genre.
Beautifully designed and naturally played by a uniformly excellent cast , Altman's elegiac vision of Edmund Naughton's novel is one of the most magnificent and melancholy westerns... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars if you like snow and cold watch it!
unusual western, fabulous photography, fine acting, a feeling thats the way it was, you are cold just looking at the screen, love westerns & this one of my favs..
atb clb
Published 1 month ago by chrisb
1.0 out of 5 stars worse film ever
I did a search on the best western film, this came up at number one, god knows how it is the most boring film i have ever watched, dont wast your money.
Published 1 month ago by Ian Patterson
2.0 out of 5 stars Terrible audio on the "Westerns: the Classic Collection" version
Th isn't the version that appears to be sold by the main Amazon page.

A great movie but the particular version I received from one of the 'used' sellers turned out to... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Francis George
4.0 out of 5 stars Warren Beatty and Julie Christie - The perfect match
These two leading film icons are just superb here with Beatty as a gambler and Christie as a brothel keeper. They make an unlikely combination but it makes for a great film.
Published 2 months ago by Mr. Paul Barker
5.0 out of 5 stars Altman's best?
An Altman classic, possibly his best ever.

The soundtrack sweeps you back to nostalgia-land.

It's old, but not dated. Loved it!
Published 2 months ago by B. W. Davis
2.0 out of 5 stars poor quality dvd
The film is fine but the quality of the dvd made it difficult to tell what was going on. a Shame.
Published 8 months ago by Jenifer Ehreth
5.0 out of 5 stars A loom of smoke and gold and breathing
This tale of a stunted almost tenderness that briefly flowers between an intellectually challenged gamblin' man (with hidden depths) and an opium smoking whore (with a cash... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Dave
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic
Fantastic Story
I would recommend this film to all western fans
Good Prevails over really bad dudes
Main stars are wonderfully believeable
Published 10 months ago by David McGuire
2.0 out of 5 stars Very dated and poor cinematography
I bought this movie after an online review as the score was written by Leonard Cohen. Unfortunately the movie was so badly directed and poorly filmed that I never made it to the... Read more
Published 13 months ago by Julie Searle
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