It's time for guns, guts, and gore as we discuss our favorite examples of violence solving the cinematic problems of the players involved in these classic films.
They say that violence solves nothing. They also argue that might makes right. Apparently, the notions of conflict and its brutal byplay are at odds with each other - just like those both for and against such sentiments. Indeed, when it comes to the movies, ending things in a hail of gunfire has been a creative go to move. From the moment we saw The Great Train Robbery and its weapon aimed directly at the audience to today's reliance of shaky cam chaos to create a sense of "being there," bullets and the devices which deliver them have become the exclamation point on any action effort. Indeed, the genre seems to be built on the notion of bigger and badder, from the accent on increased bloodshed to the attempt to turn such aggression into a thing of (questionable) beauty.
It's with that in mind that we offer up this take on 10 of the Greatest Last Act Shoot Outs in Modern Movie History. Yes, we are avoiding almost everything prior to the '70s, since in the earliest days of the medium, firefights were almost cartoonish in the brevity...and believability. As we entered the Me Decade, splatter became the new black, meaning that many a great filmmaker needed to add arterial spray to their already over the top treatment of the whole good guy/bad guy dynamic. Nowadays, (as in the new release, Easy Money, out on DVD and Blur-ray) no fashionable finale would be seen dead without a healthy dose of gore. While there are other examples worth noting (the last hurrah for Butch and Sundance, Bonnie and Clyde, and of course, anything in Shoot 'Em Up, these are our favorites, beginning with one of the guiltiest of gun-based pleasures.