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Engaging, but not terribly original gangster/western features a plot taken from Clint Eastwood's career-making "Fistful of Dollars" (in turn, an adaptation of Akira Kurosawa's "Yojimbo"). The producers and credits claim lineage directly from the Kurosawa film, but this story's been around for a while, folks. In the small 1930s border town of Jericho Texas, Willis, under the pseudonym John Smith, hires himself out to both sides of a bootlegging war in an effort to make some quick cash. Bigger roles for Walken, the flinty trigger man for Irish boss Doyle (Kelly), and Dern, the town sheriff on the mob payroll, could have perked things up a little. Willis nicely injects his smirking brand of wit into a film that may have benefitted from more of the dark "Yojimbo" humor. Hill provides his trademark visually exciting action sequences.

New Line Home Video, 116 N. Robertson Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90048, Phone: (310)854-5811, Fax: (310)854-1824, URL: http://www.newline.com, Remarks: Does not handle retail queries from consumers; contact your local video distributor.

Available on Running time 101 minutes.

Cast and Crew

Genres
Rogue Cops, Crime Drama, Gangs, Stolen from Asia, Anti-Heroes, Great Depression, Mercenaries
Screenplay
Walter Hill
Cast
Bruce Willis, Bruce Dern, Christopher Walken, Karina Lombard, William Sanderson, David Patrick Kelly, Alexandra Powers, Leslie Mann, Michael Imperioli, R.D. Call, Ken Jenkins, Ned Eisenberg
Cinematography
Lloyd Ahern
Director
Walter Hill
Music
Ry Cooder
Producer
Walter Hill, Arthur Sarkissian, Sara Risher, Michael De Luca, New Line Cinema

Visitor Reviews

Last Man Standing
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Nicholle

This is a really good movie! John Smith is an amoral gunslinger in the days of Prohibition. On the lam from his latest exploits, he happens upon the town of Jericho, Texas. It has become more like a ghost town, since two warring gangs have "driven off all the decent folk." Smith sees this as an opportunity to play both sides off against each other, earning himself a nice piece of change as a hired gun. Despite his strictly avowed mercenary intentions, he finds himself risking his life for his, albeit skewed, sense of honor.