Silverado -- a decade later

Over the 10-11 years it’s been since I saw Silverado for the first time, I must have seen it at least five times, maybe more. I saw it again yesterday and apparently the new has worn off it. Either that or enough good westerns have followed in its wake to make the luster loss a little more prominent.

Why was Jeff Goldblum even in it?
Why was Rosanna Arquette chosen as “the beautiful woman”?
If Kevin Kline’s character was such a good gunman, why did he wait so long to use that skill? (Sure, that early scene with the union suit in the street loading that decrepit gun was okay, but he basically wimped along most of the movie.)
Why did John Cleese accept his role?

I mean, for its time Silverado was a welcomed feature that still has enough clout to be rated at 7 of 10 stars on IMDb. I still like it, but it’s dropping fast as one I’d like to see again.

Any other observations you care to make?

Jesus! I just realized it’s been 20 years, not 10. Color me napping.

I remember loving the film when it came out, but the last time I saw it, about six months ago, I realized that it is not really a good film after all. Despite the plethora of excellent acting and writing talent, the story is much too melodramatic for me. I can’t put my finger on the root cause, but it just seems overwrought, like a soap opera pretending to be a western.

I guess the “oat opera” was once a common movie genre, but these were typically low budget and relatively short. The genre just doesn’t translate well as a big budget Hollywood extravaganza which, at 2:07, is about 40 minutes too long.


P. S. Rosanna Arquette may not be a stereotypical ‘beautiful woman,’ but I think she’s hot, and I think she’d be highly sought after in the time and place depicted in the film.

I still think it’s a very good film. Sure it’s got a soap-opera plot. But it’s kind of a genre-busting movie. It was intentionally overwrought. Not quite a parody, but certainly not a straight-up western. More like a western on steroids, or a western with a strange skew applied to it. And I LOVED John Cleese. Throwing that curveball in the middle of the film was a brilliant stroke.

“Today, my jurisdiction ends here. Pick up my hat.”

I opened this thread thinking it was going to be about the Savings and Loan…for lack of a better word…Debacle. I was going to say that that has been twenty years, not ten. Oh, where is the Bush brother of yesteryear?


Why was Jeff Goldblum even in it? They needed a really tall villain.
Why was Rosanna Arquette chosen as “the beautiful woman”? I think the only reference to her looks was from her. She referred to herself as “a woman who looks the way I do” or somesuch. I took that to be more sexy than beautiful.
If Kevin Kline’s character was such a good gunman, why did he wait so long to use that skill? Brian Dennehy’s heavy characterized Kline’s character, Payton, as unpredictable. Plus I think his character was trying to get by on his charm if possible.
Why did John Cleese accept his role? Cleese probably went into the early meetings hearing “Fawlterado” and thinking it would be the cinematization of “Fawlty Towers.”

If I remember correctly, there is much more of the Goldblum/ Arquette characters
that ended up on the editing room floor. The film was already coming in it more than 2 hours, and so they chopped quite a lot of charecter development.

Where’s the Dog?

Why, just so he can make his entrance with the line, “What’s all this then?”

“I don’t want to shoot you and you don’t want to be dead.” A great Danny Glover line.

Oh, wow, I just love this movie! My hubby and I saw it–twice–when we were dating. I can’t believe that was* 21 years* ago, though! When we joined a movie club some years later, it was one of the movies we selected to begin our membership.

I thought John Cleese was hilarious–“You idiot, he’s hit everything he’s aimed at!” and “Today, my jurisdiction ends here!”

Kevin Kline was great, too. “Pleased to meet you!” And “Shh!” (after Kevin Costner unloads two pistols at someone while they’re escaping the Turley jail).

And that line from Danny Glover is one of my very favorite movie quotes.

I just realized while watching it a couple of weeks ago that Earl Hindman (Wilson, of Home Improvement) played the part of Costner and Glenn’s brother-in-law. I never noticed it because I’d never really seen his face before. And I just never paid that much attention to the credits, either.

I’ll admit there are some really corny parts. The sergeant asking Cobb if he knew Paden always cracks me up–they greeted each other by name and Cobb even spelled Paden’s name. I always wished they’d looked him and said, “Nah–lucky guess!”

And corniest of all is Scott Glenn, half dead from an attack, struggling to even stand upright, until he hears, “They took the little boy with them.” Then he slowly straightens, rips the bandage from his head, and begins arming himself for a fight. Too corny for words. At least Sheb Wooley didn’t break out into a few choruses of Purple People Eater. Although I guess it would’ve been interesting, to say the least! :slight_smile:

In spite of it’s little flaws, though, it remains one of my favorite flicks!