Critics appraising a reissued ”masterpiece” sometimes review the reputation instead of the film, and Sam Peckinpah’s genre-bending Western The Wild Bunch certainly inspires such temptation. Restored to its original 145 minutes, this ultraviolent chronicle of aging outlaws planning one last haul made the use of slo-mo violence de rigueur for a generation of filmmakers. It seemed more powerful in theaters during the Vietnam era — as part of pop culture’s fashionable nihilism — than it now does on small screens, where image reduction due to letterboxing renders some sequences incomprehensible. Ultimately, though, Peckinpah’s sure directorial hand, solid scripting, and distinguished cast make The Wild Bunch engrossing entertainment. B+
Genre: Western; Starring: Ernest Borgnine, William Holden, Ben Johnson, Edmond O'Brien, Warren Oates, Robert Ryan, Jaime Sanchez; Director: Sam Peckinpah; Runtime (in minutes): 134; MPAA Rating: R; Distributor: Warner Bros.
Posted August 18 1995 — 12:00 AM EDT
- Here's how Mindy Kaling pranked B.J. Novak on 'The Office'
- Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros host vow renewal at N.C. show
- Hugh Jackman congratulates class of 2016 with graduation throwback pic
- 'Kung Fury' director teases a sequel
- Stan Lee weighs in on the 'Captain America' Hydra twist
- Watch Lady Gaga ride with Mario Andretti at the Indianapolis 500
- 'UnREAL' vs 'Everlasting': New cast members recall their own confusion
- The Best Summer Vacations in Movies
- See Exclusive Behind-the-Scenes Photos From Disney Channel Original Movies
- Getting 'Close' With Nick Jonas: See EW's Exclusive Cover Shoot
- Carpool Karaoke: James Corden's Most-Watched Videos
- The Most Famous Swimsuit Scenes From TV and Movies
- See All of Entertainment Weekly's X-Men Covers