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WARREN OATES WAITING OUT LEE VAN CLEEF FOR 'BARQUERO'

Warren Beatty plays bad to the bone for BARQUERO Year: 1970 Rating: **1/2

Of course you've heard of a Mexican Standoff, but BARQURO takes that concept of two sides waiting in deadly/suspenseful anticipation of who'll strike next to the next level, owning more than half of what begins an ultra-violent town-takeover-Western the likes of Sam Peckinpah's famous open from THE WILD BUNCH, and one of that bunch is down-and-dirty villain Warren Oates as Remy... 

Like many American-made Westerns from the 1970's... albeit this one heavily borrowing music, main star and style from the Italian Spaghetti format... the bad guys are more like gritty, disgusting, marauding bikers from the previous decade's exploitation drive-in flicks... 

Lee Van Cleef is a ferryman but not fairy, man from BARQUERO

But once Lee Van Cleef as a stealthily heroic river ferryman named Travis refuses to send his barge back (after saving the town) so the vicious gang can take their stolen gold to Mexico, the long, long wait begins, and it's a rather dull, slow ride with a few good moments in-between... 

Like Tucker Forrest's Mountain Phil goading bandit-patsy John David Chandler while Cleef... whose presence and dynamic should have been equally intense as Oates's monologue-spouting menace... seems stuck in a lethargic Sergio Leone daydream, only partially pulled-off by director Gordon Douglas, more interested in what Oates is mad at (curbed by classy Spaniard Kerwin Matthews) than what Cleef is made of.  

Future Columbo victims Forrest Tucker and John Davis Chandler in Barquero
This about sums up everything in Barquero
Eyes of sophisticated villain Kerwin Matthews in Barquero
Ed Bakey with Warren Oates and Kerwin Matthews in BARQUERO
Lee Van Cleef and hooker with the heart of gold Marie Gomez in BARQUERO
Lee Van Cleef in BARQUERO
Random Western-style action when it happens in BARQUERO
Warren Oates in BARQUERO
Final gunfight in BARQUERO
Lee Van Cleef in BARQUERO
Warren Oates in BARQUERO
Lee Van Cleef in BARQUERO

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