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Liked the story and all performances - whether John Wayne's portrayal warranted an Oscar, I'm not sure. Beautiful scenery also adds to the story.
Though I prefer the new one, it's damn close. Kim Darby makes an excellent Mattie Ross, and the dialog is rich an interesting (as per the novel). The choice of which scenes to render is slightly different, so the two movies make good companions, and John Wayne is charismatic and sympathetic. Well, he would be. His presence really makes the story about him more than about Mattie, though Darby does hold her own. There are two weaknesses in my opinion: One is that the DVD transfer is rather soft in places, which is not something I usually comment on, but the lack of crispness did distract from the beautiful Colorado vistas (standing in for Arkansas, of all places). The other is Glen Campbell as LeBoeuf. Wow, what a wooden performance, and he's unfortunately much more present than Matt Damon's LeBoeuf in the 2010 version.
Superior to the remake. One of the best of its kind. Great dialogue.
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In 2 official lists
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This movie ranks #482 in 501 Must See Movies
This movie ranks #927 in The Best 1,000 Movies Ever Made