Villa Rides

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Villa Rides
Villa Rides.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Buzz Kulik
Produced by Ted Richmond
Screenplay by Robert Towne
Sam Peckinpah
Story by William Douglas Lansford
Starring Yul Brynner
Robert Mitchum
Charles Bronson
Music by Maurice Jarre
Cinematography Jack Hildyard
Edited by David Bretherton
Distributed by Paramount Pictures
Release dates
  • May 29, 1968 (1968-05-29) (United States)
Running time
125 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Box office $1,200,000 (US/ Canada)[1]

Villa Rides is a 1968 film starring Yul Brynner in toupee in the title role and Robert Mitchum as an American adventurer and pilot of fortune. The supporting cast includes Charles Bronson as Fierro, Herbert Lom as Huerta, and Alexander Knox as Madero. Sam Peckinpah wrote the original script and was set to direct but Brynner didn't like his depiction of Villa as cruel and had Robert Towne rewrite the script and sought another director.[2] The screenplay is based on the biography by William Douglas Lansford.



Critical reception[edit]

Film critic for the Chicago Sun-Times, Roger Ebert, gave the film a mixed review, writing, "You would think an interesting picture could be made about Pancho Villa and the Mexican Revolution, a subject most Americans know next to nothing about. But we learn nothing except that Pancho was a romantic fellow who had a mustache and liked to have people lined up three in a row and killed with one bullet. (That scene, incidentally, got a big laugh.) Frankly, this kind of movie is beginning to get to me. You can enjoy one, maybe, or two. Or you can enjoy a particularly well done shoot-em-up. But the Loop has been filled with one action-adventure after another for the last month, and if Villa Rides is not the worst, it is certainly not the best."[3]

Film critic A. H. Weiler wrote, "Yul Brynner, Robert Mitchum, cavalry, politicos and even the faint strains of "La Cucaracha" fail to disguise the fact that Villa Rides which dashed into the Forum Theater yesterday, is simply a sprawling Western and not history. As such it incessantly fills the screen with the din of pistols and rifles, and assorted warfare and wenching, shot in sharp color on rugged Spanish sites that strikingly simulate Mexico. Any resemblance to the 1912-1914 campaigns of the bandit-revolutionary in the cause of liberal President Madero and against General Huerta is purely coincidental."[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Big Rental Films of 1968", Variety, 8 January 1969 p 15. Please note this figure is a rental accruing to distributors.
  2. ^ Villa Rides at the Internet Movie Database
  3. ^ Ebert, Roger. Chicago Sun-Times, film review, June 25, 1968. Accessed: June 21, 2013.
  4. ^ Weiler, A.H. The New York Times, film review, July 18, 1968. Accessed: June 21, 2013.

External links[edit]