The Last Hunt (1956) is playing on Turner Classic Movies on Mon, July 15, 2013 11:00 AM est. Closed captioned.
Have no illusions, this IS a morality story. Granger is the troubled ex-buffalo hunter, tempted back to the plains one more time by kill-crazed Taylor. Granger can see the end is near, and feels deeply for the cost of the hunt-on the herds, the Indians and the land itself. Taylor, on the other hand admittedly equates killing buffalo, or Indians to ‘being with a woman.’ While Granger’s role of the tortured hunter is superb, it’s Taylor who steals the show, as the demented, immoral ‘everyman’ out for the fast buck and the goodtimes. There’s not a lot of bang-bang here, but the story moves along quickly, and we are treated to a fine character performance by Nolan. The theme of this story is just as poignant today, as in the 1800s-man’s relationship to the land and what’s on it, and racism. Considering when this was made, the Censors must have been wringing their hankies during the scenes in the ‘bawdy house’, Taylor’s relationship with the squaw, and much of the dialogue. Although downbeat, this is truly a great western picture. Review by bux for the IMDB.