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Top 10 Western Movies Like 'The Good, the Bad and the Ugly'

Updated on December 9, 2016
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A young software engineer passionate about being a writer, sharing thoughts, and spreading knowledge.

Western is a genre of many arts. The gunfights, the masochism, the cowboys atitude, the boots, the horses and the pretty damsels. It has so many reasons to enjoy a western movie. The action is second to none and cinematography is spectacular. All in all, a western movie is a thoroughly enjoyable and thrilling ride.

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)

Best Westerns like The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)

'The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)' is arguably the best western of all time. The only movie which comes close is 'Once Upon A Time in the West (1968)' by the same director. I have been into various arguments on which of the two is better, but it's very hard to decide. Yes, Sergio Leone did evolve over the two years and made fewer mistakes in Once Upon A Time in the West. Yes, there is some audio sync issues with The Good, the Bad and the Ugly but still, with all its flaws, it is the best western of all time.

Here is a list of my top 10 western movies similar to The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966):

Once Upon a Time in the West (1968)

The only movie which could challenge 'The Good, the Bad and the Ugly' for the title of best western ever made

The beautiful Jill McBain, married in New Orleans a month ago, arrives at her new husband's place to find him and his children dead. Also new to the area, a man known only as Harmonica (met by three gunmen whom he soon dispatches). All the men - those at the McBains and the train depot - wore long coats, a trademark of local bandit Cheyenne and his gang, but it's Frank, who works for a railroad baron, who wants McBain's land and is trying to frame Cheyenne for the killing. Harmonica has his own reasons for seeking Frank, leading to a showdown.

Django Unchained (2012)

Arguably the best movie of Tarantino, Django Unchained is a big, sprawling western full of violence and revenge-driven rage

In 1858, a bounty hunter named Schultz seeks out a slave named Django and buys him because he needs him to find some men he is looking for. After finding them, Django wants to find his wife, Broomhilda who along with him were sold separately by his former owner for trying to escape. Schultz offers to help him if he chooses to stay with him and be his partner. Eventually they learn that she was sold to a plantation in Mississipi. Knowing they can't just go in and say they want her, they come up with a plan so that the owner will welcome them into his home and they can find a way.

Unforgiven (1992)

This pure western epic dedicated to Sergio Leone by Clint Eastwood is gripping and realistic

The town of Big Whisky is full of normal people trying to lead quiet lives. Cowboys try to make a living. Sheriff 'Little Bill' tries to build a house and keep a heavy-handed order. The town whores just try to get by.Then a couple of cowboys cut up a whore. Dissatisfied with Bill's justice, the prostitutes put a bounty on the cowboys. The bounty attracts a young gun billing himself as 'The Schofield Kid', and aging killer William Munny. Munny reformed for his young wife, and has been raising crops and two children in peace. But his wife is gone. Farm life is hard. And Munny is no good at it. So he calls his old partner Ned, saddles his ornery nag, and rides off to kill one more time, blurring the lines between heroism and villainy, man and myth.

True Grit (2010)

One of the best westerns like 'The Good, the Bad and the Ugly', True Grit is a delight to watch

Farmer Frank Ross heads with his employee Tom Chaney to Fort Smith to buy some ponies. However, he is murdered by Chaney, who steals his money and flees to the Indian Territory. Frank's teenager daughter and book keeper of the family business Mattie Ross travel with an employee to bring the body of her father back home. Before meeting the undertaker, they see the hanging of three men sentenced by the tough Judge Parker. The stubborn Mattie seeks out the sheriff that tells her that he does not have authority in the Indian Nation. She asks who the best Marshall is and the sheriff recommends Reuben J. "Rooster" Cogburn, a big old fellow with eye patch that has the grit to bring back criminals from the Indian Territory. Mattie hires the drunken Rooster and he plans to travel early in the morning with her. When Mattie is ready to depart, she finds that the Texas Ranger LaBoeuf had visited Rooster and proposed to share a huge reward for Tom Chaney in Texas for the murder of a senator. LaBoeuf and Rooster cross the river and Mattie joins them, and the unlikely trio begins its dangerous journey seeking out Tom Chaney in the Indian Territory.

Dances with Wolves (1990)

Dances with Wolves is a piece of art, a movie that revamped the Western genre

Having been sent to a remote outpost in the wilderness of the Dakota territory during the American Civil War, Lieutenant John Dunbar encounters, and is eventually accepted into, the local Sioux tribe. He is known as "Dances with Wolves" to them and as time passes he becomes enamoured by the beautiful "Stands With a Fist". Not soon after, the frontier becomes the frontier no more, and as the army advances on the plains, John must make a decision that will not only affect him, but also the lives of the natives he now calls his people.

The Proposition (2005)

A no-bullshit compact movie, The Proposition is thoroughly enjoyable

Rural Australia in the late nineteenth century: Capt. Stanley and his men capture two of the three Burns brothers, Charlie and Mike. Their gang is held responsible for attacking the Hopkins farm, raping pregnant Mrs. Hopkins and murdering the whole family. Arthur Burns, the eldest brother and the gang's mastermind, remains on the loose and has retreated to a mountain hideout. Capt. Stanley's proposition to Charlie is to gain pardon and - more importantly - save his beloved younger brother Mike from the gallows by finding and killing Arthur within nine days.

Open Range (2003)

An old-fashioned western, Open Range is an astonishing tale of revenge and redemption

Boss Spearman, Charley Waite, Mose Harrison and Button freegraze their cattle across the vast prairies of the West, sharing a friendship forged by a steadfast code of honor and living a life unencumbered by civilization. When their wayward herd forces them near the small town of Harmonville, the cowboys encounter a corrupt sheriff and kingpin rancher who govern the territory through fear, tyranny and violence. Boss and Charley find themselves inextricably drawn towards an inevitable showdown, as they are forced to defend the freedom and values of a lifestyle that is all too quickly vanishing. Amidst the turmoil, life suddenly takes an unexpected turn for the loner Charley when he meets the beautiful and warm spirited Sue Barlow, a woman who embraces both his heart and his soul.

Slow West (2015)

Slow West is an impressive debut for director John Maclean in the Western genre. It is wonderfully crafted and one of the most original western out there

The plot revolves around a 16-year-old boy on a journey across 19th Century frontier America in search of the woman he loves, while accompanied by mysterious traveler Silas.

The Magnificent Seven (1960)

Brilliantly directed with a near-perfect cast, The Magnificent Seven boasts of the best ever gunfights in a Western

When their small village is once again attacked by the bandit Calvera, three Mexican farmers head north to try and buy guns. They ask Chris Adams to help them but he suggests they hire experienced gunmen instead. He soon recruits five others and eventually accept a sixth who he had initially rejected but made it impossible for him to say no. Together, they develop a plan to secure the town and defend it against Calvera's attack. In that time, friendships are formed and love blossoms between one of the men and a beautiful local girl. Not all of them will survive the attack.

Meek's Cutoff (2010)

A masterpiece from Kelly Reichardt, this brilliantly directed and superbly acted movie is one of the most realistic western like 'The Good, the Bad and the Ugly'

Three wayward families are traveling across the Oregon desert in 1845 led by Stephen Meek, an ignorant mountain man. The farther they go, the more lost they seem to be and the farther they are from water - which they are in desperate need of. Some of the travelers start questioning Meek's knowledge and leading abilities, and at that time a native Indian appears on the horizon. Presumably from the area, the families must decide if they want to put their trust in the Indian to lead them to water, or if they should continue to trust Meek since the Indian may just lead them to danger.

Which of these movies are you watching next?

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