In the novel , in comics and especially in cinema there is a wide range of genres. The western is one of the most popular formats in Hollywood film history. The English word western refers to a historical context that ranges from the conquest of the West in the United States in the first decade of the 1820s to the full domination of indigenous tribes in the late nineteenth century. Western Genre
The films framed in these historical coordinates are logically set in the western United States, especially in the states of Texas, Colorado, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Montana and Idaho. This frame of reference is not always maintained, as some western genre films place their action in the middle of the 20th century.
Typical elements of the genre
From a geographical point of view, these films highlight the great prairies, rocky mountains, semi-desert areas and the border with Mexico. In relation to the ambiance, it is very common appearances taverns, lounges, ranches and cities without law. The most typical characters are the cowboy , the band of gunmen, the sheriff, the Indians, the bounty hunter and the seventh cavalry. Western Genre
Most of the films produce a certain type of conflict : a vigilante sheriff against the gunmen, the Indians against the settlers, the military against the Indians, and the cowboys against the chiefs.
A mythical genre in Hollywood history
The great Hollywood directors played an important role in consolidating this genre. Among them we can highlight John Houston, Sam Peckinpah, Howard Hawks, Robert Aldrich and John Sturges. The big actors in the movie industry were the protagonists of Western films, such as John Wayne, Gary Cooper, James Stewart, Burt Lancaster, Kirk Douglas and Clint Eastwood.
Among the most prominent titles are “The Diligence” (1939), “The Outlaw” (1943), “Only in the Face of Danger” (1952), “Rio Bravo” (1958) and the “Conquest of the West” (1962).
Although there has been a decline in the genre since the 1960s, great films have continued to be produced at all times (“Dancing with Wolves” in 1990, “Unforgivable” in 1992, or “Django Unleashed” in 2012). Western Genre
Historical characters that appear in the western genre
As in other typically American film genres, Western films extol some episodes of US history. A significant example is the Battle of the Alamo, which was brought to the big screen on several occasions.
In this cinematographic tradition, the presence of relevant historical characters is very frequent: Billy the Kid, Geronimo, Buffalo Bill, Wyatt Earp, Seth Bullock, Bast Masterson, Sundance Kid and Sitting Bull. All these legendary figures from the wild west served as inspiration for writers in the western genre.