Friday, September 11, 2009

The U.S. Occupation of Northern Mexico: Of Pancho Villa and Pershing's "Exploratory" Expedition

Here's another cover from the same site; needless to say, a Tex[t]-Mextian nightmare shot!

and, for the kicker, check out cinema Diva-critic Pauline Kael, on Alfredo Bedoya from The Treasure the Sierra Madre:

The Treasure of the Sierra Madre

US (1948): Adventure
124 min, No rating, Black & White, Available on videocassette and laserdisc
One of the strongest of all American movies. Three Americans stranded in Mexico dig for gold and strike it rich--and the writer-director, John Huston, "looks on," as he says, and "lets them stew in their own juice." Bogart is the paranoid tough guy, Fred C. Dobbs; Walter Huston is the toothless, shrewd old prospector; Tim Holt is a blunt, honest young man. With Alfonso Bedoya as a primitive bandit who makes one appreciate civilization, Robert Blake as a Mexican boy, and Bruce Bennett, and the director himself as the victim of Bogart's cadging. From the B. Traven novel; Ted McCord was the cinematographer; Max Steiner wrote the terrible score. The first section (about 20 minutes), set in Tampico, with Bogart getting a haircut and fighting Barton MacLane in a bar, is so sure and lucid it's as good as anything John Huston ever did--maybe even better than THE MALTESE FALCON. But there he sustained the hard, economic style; here, he doesn't. And an episode involving the reading of a letter written by Bruce Bennett's wife is so false and virtuous that it's hard to believe that it's in the same movie as those scenes in Tampico. The picture is emotionally memorable, though--it has a powerful cumulative effect; when it's over you know you've seen something. (It was a box-office failure in 1948; apparently audiences resented Bogart's departure from the immensely popular CASABLANCA stereotype.) Warners.

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