The Rare Breed

( 1 )

Overview

Andrew V. McLaglen's The Rare Breed (1966) is an offbeat, genial western from a period in which the genre found itself increasingly relying on violence to reach audiences. There is some violence here -- though mostly the threat of it -- but primarily this movie walks a fine line between light-hearted western comedy and a serious (if unconventional) subject, the breeding of cattle -- just so its intentions are clear, at about six minutes in, there is a brawl that is obviously meant to recall the slag-pit fight ...
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Overview

Andrew V. McLaglen's The Rare Breed (1966) is an offbeat, genial western from a period in which the genre found itself increasingly relying on violence to reach audiences. There is some violence here -- though mostly the threat of it -- but primarily this movie walks a fine line between light-hearted western comedy and a serious (if unconventional) subject, the breeding of cattle -- just so its intentions are clear, at about six minutes in, there is a brawl that is obviously meant to recall the slag-pit fight sequence in McLaglen's 1963 western comedy McLintock!. The movie has been letterboxed to its full 2.35-to-1 Panavision aspect ratio, with a great deal of depth and richness to the color. The landscapes are very pretty, and some of interior scenes do work better with the widescreen image, but the truth is that this movie should never have been shot in Panavision -- it wasn't essential to the presentation of the subject. Additionally, the opening up of the Panavision frame only reminds us of the obvious studio process shots used in certain scenes. Still, we're stuck with the framing, and the color and detail here is superior to anything seen of The Rare Breed in broadcast or cable presentations of the film. The 20 chapters are more than adequate, and the DVD also comes with the original trailer, which is full-frame and a lot darker in color tone. The trailer, incidentally, may also have marked a high-point in the feature film career of Don Galloway, who was to find success on television three years later as one of the detectives working for Raymond Burr on Ironside. The movie comes with French, Spanish, and English subtitle and caption selections, accessible through a menu that opens automatically on start-up.
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Special Features

Closed Caption; Original theatrical trailer
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
A middling Western, The Rare Breed at least gets points for focusing on an unusual (for a Hollywood Western) subject -- the cross-breeding of cattle, actually a very important chapter in the creation and sustenance of the American West. This in itself, of course, is not enough to sustain an entire film, and so screenwriter Richard Hardman has created a story that has all the elements for action and suspense. It has all the elements, as I say -- but somehow the elements don't really come together in a satisfying way. You watch Breed and understand how all the parts fit together, but they feel forced. At its heart, Breed seems to want to be less about plot and more about character, especially the character of Sam Burnett. But Burnett isn't interesting enough or complex enough to carry that much weight, which causes Breed to get a little bogged down. Andrew V. McLaglen's hamhanded direction doesn't help matters, especially when he goes overboard during the climactic search for the calf scene. As Burnett, Jimmy Stewart is good, but not as good as one expects him to be; he seems a bit distanced from the character. Maureen O'Hara comes off much better, as does Brian Keith (in spite of a sometimes-bizarre accent), but the best performance is Juliet Mills', which is fresh and engaging, and which mines humor that others might have missed.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/6/2003
  • UPC: 025192262722
  • Original Release: 1966
  • Rating:

  • Source: Universal Studios
  • Region Code: 1
  • Aspect Ratio: Cinemascope (2.35:1)
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo
  • Language: English, Français
  • Time: 1:37:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 15,544

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
James Stewart Sam Burnett
Maureen O'Hara Martha Evans
Brian Keith Alexander Bowen
Juliet Mills Hilary Price
Jack Elam Deke Simons
Don Galloway Jamie Bowen
David Brian Charles Ellsworth
Ben Johnson Jeff Harter
Harry Carey Jr. Ed Mabry
Perry Lopez Juan
Larry Domasin Alberto
Alan Caillou Taylor
Tex Armstrong Barker
Larry Blake Auctioneer
Buff Brady Stunt player
Bob Gravage Cattle Buyer
John Harris Stunt player
Leroy Johnson Stunt player
Charles Lampkin Porter
Ted Mapes Liveiryman
James O'Hara Sagamon
Gregg Palmer Rodenbush
Buddy Van Horn Stunt player
Barbara Werle Gert
Technical Credits
Andrew V. McLaglen Director
Alexander Golitzen Art Director
William Alland Producer
William H. Clothier Cinematographer
Oliver Emert Set Decoration/Design
Rich Hardman Screenwriter
Ric Hardman Screenwriter
Corson Jowett Sound/Sound Designer
John McCarthy Set Decoration/Design
Terry Morse Jr. Asst. Director
Rosemary Odell Costumes/Costume Designer
Russell Schoengarth Editor
Waldon O. Watson Sound/Sound Designer
Bud Westmore Makeup
John Williams [composer] Score Composer
Alfred Ybarra Art Director
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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. "Bulldogging" [3:41]
2. Meet Vindicator [5:47]
3. The Conspiracy [3:22]
4. Train Ride [5:50]
5. Trouble in Dodge [8:14]
6. Long Road to Texas [4:54]
7. You're Getting Off Here [3:56]
8. Stampede! [3:30]
9. Stick 'Em Up [5:03]
10. Alexander's Fort [4:41]
11. That Woman's Takin' Over [4:17]
12. Hunting Longhorn [6:37]
13. Turned Loose [6:00]
14. Vindicator's Vanished [3:44]
15. Afternoon Tea [5:32]
16. Broken Faith [5:32]
17. Vindicator's Been Found [4:43]
18. Tied to an Idea [5:33]
19. Hereford Crossbreed [4:22]
20. He's Still Out There [1:18]
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Menu

Side #1 --
   Scenes
   Languages
      Spoken Language: English
      Spoken Language: Français
      Captioned for the Hearing Impaired: English
      Subtitles: Español
      Subtitles: Français
      Captions & Subtitles: None
   Theatrical Trailer
   Play
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Customer Reviews

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    Posted February 17, 2009

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