I’m somewhat notorious for being into cable-caliber movies featuring B-to-Z-grade actors, and while that’s certainly true, it doesn’t apply across the board. If we’re talking pulpy genres like action movies or lurid “erotic” thrillers, then who needs the dramatic muscle of legitimate stars? Z-grade presence sometimes counts for more, especially in the hands of a director like, say, Tarantino. But if any sort of narrative subtlety or textured acting is required, then I don’t want Casper Van Dien starring any more than you would, ok?
As a genre, the Western can fit both of these mindsets, though it certainly tilts toward the former. And with that in mind, I have no problem with Westerns filled with has-beens or no-names, especially some names of folks I like that haven’t been onscreen for some time. That’s why I’m kind of looking forward to The Man Who Came Back, an indie (and this isn’t “indie” as in alternative, but “indie” as in no one sane would fund a movie with a cast like this unless they were fucking one of them) western with the powerhouse ensemble of Sean Young, George Kennedy, Eric Braeden, Armand Assante, Peter Jason (oh, Deadwood, why hast thou forsaken me?), Carol Alt and Billy. Fucking. Zane.
Despite that last name, the point of greatest interest for me is that it’s being written and directed by Glen Pitre. Pitre’s not some average direct-to-DVD chump that they threw a rock and hit when looking to get the movie going. He’s a