HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Deeper You Dig, The
Trouble Brewing
Song Without a Name
Incident in a Ghostland
Relic
Nobody
Now, At Last!
Tales from the Hood
Radio Parade of 1935
Dead
Death at Broadcasting House
Huracan
Ghost Strata
Call to Spy, A
Tailgate
Other Lamb, The
Every Time I Die
Lynn + Lucy
Topsy-Turvy
Honest Thief
Blood and Money
Rose: A Love Story
Antrum: The Deadliest Film Ever Made
Om Dar-B-Dar
Silencing, The
J.R. 'Bob' Dobbs and the Church of SubGenius
Dick Johnson is Dead
Two/One
Cognition
Legacy of Lies
I Am Woman
Alien Addiction
Dare, The
South Terminal
Little Monsters
Yield to the Night
My Zoe
Young Playthings
End of Summer
Times of Harvey Milk, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Down to the Welles: Orson Welles Great Mysteries Volume 2 on DVD
Herding Cats: Sleepwalkers on Blu-ray
Confessions of a Porn Star: Adult Material on DVD
They're Still Not Sure It is a Baby: Eraserhead on Blu-ray
Werewolves are Real: Dog Soldiers on Digital
Rose: A Love Story - Producers April Kelley and Sara Huxley Interview
Phone Phreak: 976-EVIL on Blu-ray
Living the Nightmare: Dementia on Blu-ray
Becky and The Devil to Pay: Ruckus and Lane Skye Interview
Big Top Bloodbath: Circus of Horrors on Blu-ray
A Knock on the Door at 4 O'clock in the Morning: The Strangers on Blu-ray
Wives of the Skies: Honey Lauren Interview
To Catch a Thief: After the Fox on Blu-ray
Tackling the Football Film: The Arsenal Stadium Mystery on Blu-ray
Film Noir's Golden Couple: This Gun for Hire on Blu-ray
The Doctor Who Connection: Invasion on Blu-ray
Hill's Angles: Benny Hill and Who Done It? on Blu-ray
Big Willie Style: Keep It Up Downstairs on Blu-ray
Walt's Vault: 5 Cult Movies on Disney+
Paradise Lost: Walkabout on Blu-ray
Buster Makes Us Feel Good: Buster Keaton - 3 Films (Volume 3) on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 3 - Don't Go Away - I Could Do with a Bit of Cheer Now!
What Use is Grief to a Horse? Equus on Blu-ray
For God's Sake Strap Yourselves Down: Flash Gordon on 4K UHD Collector's Edition
Party Hard: Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure on Blu-ray
   
 
  Hired Hand, The Homeward Bound
Year: 1971
Director: Peter Fonda
Stars: Peter Fonda, Warren Oates, Verna Bloom, Robert Pratt, Severn Darden, Rita Rogers, Ann Doran, Ted Markland, Owen Orr, Al Hopson, Megan Denver, Michael McClure, Gray Johnson, Len Marsal
Genre: WesternBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Three men, Harry (Peter Fonda), Arch (Warren Oates) and the youngest Dan (Robert Pratt) have been riding East for some time now, and Dan especially wants to reach California to see the coast. Today, they take a break from their travelling to have a rest and eat a meal, and Dan has been fishing in the river they have stopped by. Once they have finished bathing, they enjoy their food and discuss their options, with Harry saying he is feeling the pull of home and the wife and daughter he has not seen for seven years. Then Dan notices the body of a drowned little girl in the water - could it be an omen?

Well, certainly things do not turn out all that terrific for most of the characters, but some of them do find peace for a while. First, however, Harry, Arch and Dan must have a fateful encounter in the next smalltown stop on their journey. The Hired Hand came out of the success of Easy Rider, the counterculture movie that was embraced by the mainstream for a while in 1969 onwards, and many of the cast and crew involved with that were given a chance to direct their own films in the studio's hope that lightning would strike twice.

Alas, it was not to be and despite the low cost of most of these works, none were huge hits. However, the box office's loss was cult movie fans gain, as every one of those personal and offbeat films that resulted would go on to enjoy small but loyal followings. The Hired Hand was no exception, and over the years some of those who caught it responded to its muzzy, langorous mood and appearance. It seems to have been filmed almost entirely at the hottest time of the day, as everyone in the film looks to be wilting either through the weather or through the onerous burdens they must carry on their shoulders.

Harry and Arch find that responsibility is what ties them down, whether it is to family or friends. This makes itself plain when Dan stumbles into the bar they are drinking in with a fatal gunshot wound to the neck, as local head honcho McVey (Severn Darden) follows soon after claiming that Dan tried to rape his wife. Harry and Arch don't buy this for a second, and the next day when they have buried the body they make a point of ambushing McVey and crippling him by shooting his feet. Now they both have enemies, even if they do think they have heard the last of this.

For the rest of the film, Verna Bloom makes her mark as Harry's wife Hannah, initially wary of his return for she has been getting along without him and is suspicious of his intentions. But all Harry really wants is to settle down after years of peregrination, and they eventually see eye to eye even if he is unhappy about her reputation of an easy woman who sleeps with her hired help. Now Harry is the hired help, and Bloom manages an interesting depiction of a tough-minded but good-hearted mother blossoming under the attention of her returned spouse. Fonda is too keen to be arty with Alan Sharp's script, particularly with his habit of dissolve-heavy montages, but he does build up a strong atmosphere even as we realise this is not going to end happily. If it does not really move, then that is because we can see the conclusion coming a mile off. Music by Bruce Langhorne.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3395 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Paul Smith
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
   

 

Last Updated: