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Western Movies and Western Horses

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  • Western Movies and Western Horses

    Since some of us may have grown up on the old western movies ... who's your favorite horse??

    And what are some of your favorite horses in the movies ...

    For example I love the sorrel that Ben Johnson is riding in the John Wayne western She Wore A Yellow Ribbon, I also liked a sorrel in an old Robert Taylor movie --can't remember the name of the film, had a bunch of ladies in covered wagons going west ...

    I think John Wayne really got cheated when they put him on that short Appaloosa in El Dorado. But I loved his big sorrel in Chisolm, "Dollar" was a more modern looking horse.

    Trigger was a big favorite as was Buttermilk... Gene Autry's Champ ... Loved the Cisco Kid's loud black and white Paint. Charlton Heston rode a great looking black and white overo in The Big Country.

    My family always rolls their eyes when the first thing I mention is the quality of the horses in the western, or the fact that the fellow was riding a bay--but they showed a sorrel bucking..LOL

  • #2
    The one in Dances with Wolves. Or the one in The Man From Snowy River.
    RIP Don - 3/28/2004-8/15/2012


    • Original Poster

      Ahh the buckskin Kevin Costner rode ...

      and the grulla/buckskin colored horse or the stallion they made the fuss over?

      I kind of forgot about some of the newer movies ... guess I'm still living in my childhood LOL


      • #4
        The buckskin one he rode down the cliff on! You didn't see a whole lot of the stallion they were trying to catch except for "the eye" scene that cracks me and my dad up every time we see that.
        RIP Don - 3/28/2004-8/15/2012


        • #5
          Showing my age, but in the 60's-early 70's, there was a horse with a big, almost bald face, and a quarter-sized dark spot just above and to the right of his left eye. I swear that horse was in almost every western movie or show. Keep your eyes peeled if you watch the old westerns.

          Matt Dillon's big buckskin on Gunsmoke was a fine horse too.


          • #6
            I liked Paladin's horse, Rafter. Also liked Ben Cartwright's horse and had a real soft spot for Ruth, the mule on Gunsmoke. Now THAT shows my age.
            Founder of the Dyslexic Clique. Dyslexics of the world - UNTIE!!

            Member: Incredible Invisbles


            • Original Poster

              LOL Yep, I will have to watch for that one ... I love a bald face!

              Yep one of my husband's childhood highlights was when they went to California and visited the place that stabled Matt Dillon's horse. He was impressed with him in person as well as on the screen I don't remember if he got to see Ruth ...

              I think Silverado was one of the more recent westerns that realized the 'good guys' had to have special horses. I liked Paladin's dark horse and I liked Kevin Costner's Paint. Bonanza had a good selection of horses ... I liked the liver chestnut -- don't see too many of them.

              I always liked Jimmy Stewart's sorrel that he rode ... you can see how he 'aged' through the movies... and I sure didn't recognize Trigger when he was in Robin Hood ...he was the palomino that Maid Marion rode ...


              • #8
                Now that the Bonanza reruns are on tv, I have re-fallen in love with Hoss`s horse Chub. I think that that horse could be such a versatile animal; there is a piaffe and passage in there somewhere AND, a glimpse of some lovely collected and extended gaits. Actually for being such a big man, Dan Blocker was not a bad rider. Breyer did a Chub too, he was just a neat horse and I would love to have him in my stable. Timing is off by about 40 years :-(.

                Adam was really rough on his horse and the horse was always trying to protect itself, a brace on four legs. I heard that Adam was tough to work with on the set as well, hmmmmm.


                • #9
                  Matt Dillon's big buckskin on Gunsmoke was a fine horse too.
                  I think Gunsmoke is where I got my love of buckskins. That must have been a huge horse since James Arness was 6'7".

                  People say my horse looks like Little Joe's Cochise.

                  Great collection of movie horses: http://www.cowboypal.com/hosses.html


                  • Original Poster

                    LOL Yep ReRuns ... you bring up a good point. I was always a Glenn Ford fan, but I hate to see him ride a horse. Arms flapping like a chicken and hanging on their heads..makes me cringe.

                    Leather - Yep ... and Audie Murphy was always on a taller horse it seems to make him taller I think ... And, what a website, thanks for sharing ... that brought back a lot of memories!!


                    • #11
                      I had a thread in OT about this very thing!

                      "I think Silverado was one of the more recent westerns that realized the 'good guys' had to have special horses. "
                      I posted about this movie recently. They all had different horses, and they were all distinctive. EXCEPT Paden, aka, Kevin Kline. And he shot a man for stealing his horse! That horse changed twice in one scene!
                      And as an early Kevin Costner movie, he could really ride! Riding that paint bareback, and just being plain crazy in that movie.
                      Another killer of threads


                      • #12
                        Didn`t Kevin Costner buy that buckskin after the movie?

                        I am pretty sure Vigo bought the mustang after Hidalgo. Vigo, not a bad rider either.


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by re-runs View Post
                          Didn`t Kevin Costner buy that buckskin after the movie?

                          I am pretty sure Vigo bought the mustang after Hidalgo. Vigo, not a bad rider either.
                          I thought, correct me if I 'm wrong, that that buckskin is who Donna Brothers rode covering the various races for a long time.
                          Another killer of threads


                          • #14
                            Pale Rider:

                            (huge eastwood spaghetti western fan here!)

                            Shanghai Noon

                            All time fave. Cat Ballou:
                            You jump in the saddle,
                            Hold onto the bridle!
                            Jump in the line!


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by AnEnglishRider View Post
                              The one in Dances with Wolves. Or the one in The Man From Snowy River.
                              The Man from Snowy River movies must have the best "chase" scenes in horse-y movie history. I love that they really let them run! Necks stretched out, ears back... It is so lame when they hold the horses back and just speed up the film so their legs go really fast! According to Clinton Anderson, that scene where Snowy River Guy goes over the cliff and straight down, was real. They got some stuntman/cowboy/maniac to agree to do it, and shot it in one take. Can you imagine making it to the bottom, and then having the director say, "Hey, can you do that again?"


                              • #16
                                According to Wikipedia and IMDB, Tom Burlinson did that cliff ride himself: "In 1981, he got his career's break, when he was given the main role in the biggest Australian film prodction ever that was to be shot the next year, The Man from Snowy River, as Jim Craig ("The Man"). He had just a few short weeks to learn how to ride a horse and make it look like he had been born in the saddle. He performed all of the stunts, including the iconic cliff ride." Although many forums have posts that state it was both Tom and a stunt rider. Some say it was done in one take, and others say it was done several times and parts edited together.

                                Love those movies and Tom Burlinson.

                                And have you seen what he does now?



                                • #17
                                  Australia 86

                                  Way back in the way back,I was able to go to Australia to watch the US eventing team run and jump in the World Championships at Gawler. That movie had just been out a couple of years or so, and EVERYTHING was about TMFSR. [The man from Snowy River] One of the coolest jumps on the course, was called the Snowy River Leap. If you stood where you would take off, it looked like you were jumping off into space.[I have pix of the entire course on my COMH page if you are interested in the course.] It wasn't a huge fence, but it LOOKED much bigger than it rode. You jumped it, and went down a steep hill, and at the bottom of the hill was the big water complex, where most of the crowd spend the day.
                                  But back to the movie.
                                  It has always been my favorite horseback scene, as others have said, running flat out, real wranglers, [watch the cast, they were all brothers!] The tension in the music as they were all gathering, the quick shots of the farrier, the saddling, horses moving restlessly. And when you think about it, all the 'wild' horses went over the tiny, tiny piece of driftwood at the top of the hill. None of these 'crack' riders would do it.

                                  Now, when I was down there, I bought a book about the movie horses in Australia. Of course, the big draw was Snowy River. It said it was a stunt rider, named Heath I think. He was one of the wranglers on the movie. I never believed it was Tom, his face was covered by the hat. If your star is doing the stunt, you can darn sure believe his face is gonna show!You can tell they are really going down a hill that steep by looking at the trees! They are straight up. the horse and rider are going thru at an angle, yeah whoever did it, it was great riding.
                                  One. last. thing. As in most of my favorite movies, this one has a stunning soundtrack. One of my friends had the music, breaking the colt, played at her wedding. And how many movies do you see that have a complete piece of music played all the way thru the scene when it isn't a musical?
                                  Another killer of threads


                                  • #18
                                    If you want to just skip to the good bits, there's a video on YouTube with the actor who played Clancy reading the poem "The Man From Snowy River" with just the film scenes of the gathering at the station and the chase and return. (The poem itself is just that bit, and they extrapolated a lot of the rest of the film, except the romance and Jim's dad, from other Banjo Patterson poems--Harrison who made his pile when Pardon won the Cup gets his backstory from the poem "Pardon, the Son of Reprieve", and Clancy himself is "Clancy of the Overflow.")
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                                    • #19
                                      There were so many...I loved Trampass's Buck...I think there were 2 or 3 Bucks. I adored Trigger; what a talented well trained horse! I read that his cost to Roy rogers, in the 1930s, was over $30,000!!! I wanted a pinto like Little Joe's and I had a soft spot forJimmy Stewart's chestnut. Oh, my first favorite horse was Fury....that REALLY shows my age!


                                      • #20
                                        I love TV Cowboys and Tall Texas tales.....

                                        Especially Roy and Trigger(s)


                                        A four legged friend...


                                        I wanted a pinto like Little Joe's
                                        Me Too!!
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