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Epic Western

The Epic Western is a sub-genre of the Western movie.

A prototype is Once Upon a Time in the West, a lengthy revenge epic directed by Sergio Leone and starring Charles Bronson. Others are The Searchers with John Wayne and Leone's The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.

Epic Westerns draw from the Norse Saga technique. They tend to be long, sweeping, and complex, with often-shifting alliances. Characters are more deeply drawn than cheap shoot 'em up Westerns, sometimes acting as forces for good, sometime evil. Men are often caught in situations not of their own choosing, and must surmount fantastic difficulties. A common technique is someone who never wants to resort to violence, but is forced into it due to circumstances beyond his control.

Open Range is a recent (as of this writing) epic Western.

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