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The western genre isn't just known for its spectacular cinematography, iconic characters or sense of lawlessness. Westerns have given us some of the most intense, gritty and thrilling gun fights ever recorded. These have ranged from standoffs to full on lead filled onslaughts. Join http://www.WatchMojo.com as we count down our Top 10 favorite Western Movie Gunfights. Please be advised, this clip contains mature content and contains spoilers.
Top 10 Western Movie Gunfights
These are the most memorable exchanges to star six shooters and shotguns in the Wild West. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’ll be counting down our Top 10 favorite Western Movie Gunfights.
Please be advised, this clip contains mature content and spoilers as you'll see who gets shot.
#10- Catching the Train “3:10 To Yuma” (2007)
Kicking of our list is a gunfight involving a crippled rancher, played by Christian Bale, trying to escort a captured gang leader to an inbound prison train. Ultimately, the captive Russell Crowe develops a bit of Stockholm syndrome, dodging advances by his own men. This gunfight is both a gripping and unconventional chase, and manages to end with both men finding redemption.
#9- One Vs. Four “High Noon” (1952)
Gary Cooper is a sheriff forced to faceoff against four killers by himself. This game of cat and mouse was unlike anything audiences had seen in the 1950s, as the stakes rise when he is forced to fight while saving a barn full of animals from a fire, as well as his own wife who is taken hostage.
#8- The Escape “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” (1969)
This gunfight showcases the infamous pair of outlaws making a daring escape from the Bolivian army. Robert Redford’s Sundance Kid gives covering fire while his partner fetches the horses. The result is some amazing duel wielding gunplay, horses used as shields and the Kid managing to take several soldiers on at long range. Ultimately, this turned out to be a no win scenario, but the pair goes out in a blaze of glory.
#7- Freeing The Town “Open Range” (2003)
This is one of the longest gunfights ever recorded in a western. It showcases Kevin Costner is a former soldier that fights alongside Robert Duvall, an open-range cattleman. Together, they two men take on an Irish land baron who killed their friend, along with his army of men. Dirty gunplay and trickery only goes so far before the town decides to fight back, helping them turn the tide of the battle.
#6- The O.K. Corral “Tombstone” (1993)
This is Hollywood’s most famous version of the OK Corral Gunfight. Here, the mustached sheriffs, led by Wyatt Earp and Doc Holiday, take on the Clanton clan. Doc rides shotgun while Earp points his custom made Colt. This battle showcases a nail-biting prelude, preceding a wink and a relentless exchange of lead. Unlike other Hollywood movies, one shot doesn’t kill, well maybe it killed this guy…making for a more believable confrontation.
#5- The Train Rolls In “Once Upon A Time In The West” (1968)
Three trench coat gunmen wait at the train station for Charles Bronson to arrive. As a train car opens they reach for their guns. This scene is atmospheric and tense. Just as they are about to leave, Bronson greets them with his harmonica and smugly informs his would be killers that they are out of their league, quickly dispatching them while surviving a gunshot wound to the shoulder.
#4- The Coffin Gun “Django” (1966)
This was probably is the most violent gunfight scene of its day. It’s still pretty unbelievable! Here, a revenge-seeking drifter named Django takes on countless masked killers. The twist, he uses a massive belt fed machine gun that’s been hidden in the coffin he’s been dragging around for the whole movie. He kills almost everyone with it, before using his pistol to give their leader a face full of mud. Totally bad ass.
#3- The Suicide Mission “The Wild Bunch” (1969)
In this scene, cowboys go on a suicide mission to save their comrade from a Mexican warlord. This sets off an insane and relentless battle against an entire army fort. Countless soldiers are slaughtered as a chain gun is used and grenades explode all around. It’s hard to imagine that anyone in the battle knows exactly what they are shooting at! Even a kid gets in on the gunplay…
#2- Three-Way Mexican Standoff “The Good, The Bad And The Ugly” (1996)
Clint Eastwood wears his iconic poncho and sucks on his cigar as the nameless gunman caught in a deadly face off. The music and editing says all that needs to be said, as they fight for a grave full of gold.
Clint uses his Colt Revolver to put Angel Eyes in the ground, literally, before dealing with Tuco. This is the scene that continues to define the Mexican standoff.
#1- The Old Dog Has His Day “Unforgiven” (1992)
Taking the top spot on our list is another defining Clint Eastwood gunfight moment. Here he plays an old gun turned reformed pig farmer that avenges the death of his friend at the hand of corrupt sheriffs. Clint single handedly puts them down through careful aim and cool head, proving that even in his frail old age, he is still the most fearsome gun in the west.
Agree with our list? Which Western gunfight is your favorite? For more great Top 10s, be sure to Subscribe to WatchMojo.com.