In today’s movie climate, when someone heads to the movie theater they’ll likely be seeing an adventure action drama or comedy. During the first half of the 20th century however the most popular movie genre was the Western. Stories about the American frontier gun-toting cowboys and horse-riding outlaws dominated cinemas and drew in huge crowds. In fact more Westerns were produced in the 1950s than all other movie genres combined.

Despite their decrease in popularity over the last 60 years Westerns still have plenty of defenders and enduring appeal. If you’re new to the genre and don’t know where to start—or if you’re a long-time fan looking for inspiration—check out Stacker’s list of the 100 best Western films of all time. Stacker compiled this list using data from Metacritic, a site which collects reviews from respected critics and uses them to determine the average rating.[/nextpage][nextpage]

#100. The Missing

Revolution Studios

Metascore: 55
Release date: Nov. 19 2003

Cate Blanchett plays a mother in 1885 New Mexico fighting for her daughter’s life against an Apache brujo. She seeks the help of her estranged father played by Tommy Lee Jones.


#99. Wild Horse, Wild Ride

Screen Media Films

Metascore: 55
Release date: Aug. 24, 2012

“Wild Horse, Wild Ride” is a documentary that follows nine horse trainers competing in the Extreme Mustang Challenge. Directors Greg Gricus and Alex Dawson showcase the emotional journeys of the trainers as they attempt to tame wild mustangs in just 100 days to win a cash prize and recognition of their skills.


#98. All the Pretty Horses

Columbia Pictures Corporation

Metascore: 55
Release date: Dec. 25, 2000

Billy Bob Thornton produced and directed “All the Pretty Horses,” an adaptation of Cormac McCarthy’s novel of the same name. The story follows two cowboys looking for work in Mexico when one of them, played by Matt Damon, gets into trouble after he falls for a rancher’s daughter, played by Penelope Cruz. The movie was met with mediocre reviews, which Matt Damon blames on heavy edits to Thornton’s first version of the film—including the removal of the original soundtrack.


#97. Forsaken

Minds Eye Entertainment

Metascore: 55
Release date: Feb. 19, 2016

In “Forsaken,” a retired gunman attempts to reconnect with his estranged father when he comes up against a local gang and must consider going back to his violent ways. Real-life son and father Kiefer Sutherland and Donald Sutherland teamed up to play the lead roles, while Jon Cassar directed.

(Excerpt) Read More at: Stacker.com


100 Best Western Films of all Time, According to Critics

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