User rating -
For me Yul Brynner was the epitome of cool and aplomb. From his dark gray and black outfit down to the tip of his thin cheroot he was the kind of man others look up to but keep their distance. Yul Brynner as Chris, was a man of few words and often communicated by the mere gesture of the hand. Of the seven, he was the cohesive element that drew them together simply by his demeanor. The aura of his worldliness beckoned them all to the place he was heading. It was the same place they were all going. He was just the first to recognize it. Brynner too was the cohesive element that kept them all together. Brynner was the one who followed some unwritten code of honor that is only alluded to in a few passages. McQueen was perfect as the gunfighter who was just drifting and signed on with Brynner. The levelheaded McQueen represents the other characters realizations one by one as they join. James Coburn was perfect, as the stoic knife throwing Britt, who lived only for the thrill of the moment. Charles Bronson as O'Reilly played his stoically rugged but sympathetic role better than any actor could have. Bronson had a unique visual presence whose kind facial expressions counter balanced his pockmark face and strong physique. Bronson was a conundrum unto himself and perfect for the role. Brad Dexters performance as the unlucky fortune hunter has gone unrecognized. He was the least noble of the seven and died the mercenary that he was, yet there is some nobility to ones profession in that. Still, he gains our sympathy after returning in the clutch and saves his friend Chris and in turn is killed. Dying in the arms of his friend, Chris lets him go to the grave with a lie. Robert Vaughns character was probably the most interesting of the seven. His enigmatic portrayal of Lee the tormented soul and not really the cowesternd he labeled himself somehow never stood out. Only his act of redemption, his gunplay and death during the finale lingers. Vaughns portrayal is a success because as he said he was the coward hiding out in the middle of a battlefield and at that he succeeded. Horst Buchholz gave an energetic and bravura performance the only one of the seven that had not yet been corrupted by the world. At the end he symbolically hangs his guns up and roles up his sleeves. Brynner and McQueen say that only the farmers have won and they lost. As they ride off into screen immortality I think we all won.
By User - gobirds2 from USA - posted at Amazon.co.uk
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