Do not forsake me
They don’t make nostalgia like they used to. How we laughed. But the Coen Brothers in the movie Hail Caesar do just that. And how. Most of the major film genres and clichés pre 1960 are put up, seen through, laughed at and worshipped. Busby Berkeley, the drawing room comedies, the Biblical epics, the service based musicals,the gossip columns, the phoney lives and for me ,most of all, the cowboys. Coen’s non speaking, all riding, lasso perfect, Hobie Doyle is the man. As handsome as a sunset. He cant speak but he knows right from wrong and he can ride and sing and, what else, should a cowpoke do.
There was a time when many of the cowboy stars had been the real thing, really?, if they didn’t have to go in front of the cameras they would have been just have happy( but not as well paid) out on the prairies , counting the stars,bringing in the long horns and cursing the bad coffee.
Oh God, long before I started to waste my life on football, girls ,family and career there were the black and white cowboy stars of Saturday morning pictures. From ages five to ten at the old Essoldo Cinema ( bingo and now flats)in Southfields every Saturday morning I would go down and watch them save the world. Tex Ritter, Hopalong Cassidy, Gene Autry, the Lone Ranger. No bad guy was safe, no honest citizen need worry, the new town would prosper, no kid couldn’t get to learn his algebra. These guys were out there kicking arse for civilisation. Our dads may have had suits and boring jobs but Gene, Hopalong, Tex and the rest made life safe for decent folks.
Sure they didn’t talk much, straight talking isn’t like that, actions speak louder. They didnt date , awwh shucks, you do go on.. They loved their horses,man’s best friend and most of all they had a profound sense of fair play. They didn’t flinch, they didn’t hesitate,when wrong had to righted,they were on their horses and things got done.
When they saw Mr and Mrs Law abidin’ Joe and Jessie Average having a bad time,they stepped in. Now hold it partner that wont be necessary. I think you have done enough and you should move out of town. The black hat knew what that meant. A cloud of dust as bad guys get the message.
Then , Mrs Average runs out, her blond hair falling out of its customary bun, Oh how can I thank you. You know what she wants, but this is Saturday morning pictures. So our hero says with just the shadow of a smile, Make sure junior learns his sums and eats his greens and I’ll be seeing you. He rides off, she looks on, a tear in her eye. Husband appears, Everything all right dear. She wipes her hands on her apron, I guess so. Why did life have to get complicated. Ask the Coen brothers.