Liz Wirth: What do you care? What do you care about Black Rock?
John J. Macreedy: I don’t care anything about Black Rock. Only it just seems to me that there aren’t many towns like this in America. But… one town like it is enough. And because I think something kind of bad happened here, Miss Wirth, something I can’t quite seem to find a handle to.
Liz Wirth: You don’t know what you’re talking about.
John J. Macreedy: Well, I know this much. The rule of law has left here, and the guerrillas have taken over.
Variations of the same story have been told many times but I find this one especially moving. The old knight wears a cheap suit and his eyes show the pain of old wounds. His body has withered but not his determination to repay a personal debt and stand up for decency. We are not told much about him but his actions speak louder than words. Continue reading
Elsa: “My father says there’s only right and wrong – good and evil. Nothing in between. It isn’t that simple, is it?”
Steve: “No, it isn’t. It should be, but it isn’t.”
Do we just know right from wrong? Or do we actually develop that conviction (if at all) over the years? Where do our moral codes come from? How far will we go to uphold them? I dare to guess that the answer to the first questions is a combination of innate traits, upbringing and other social influences. As for the last question, I believe it to be the real measure of a human being…
Those questions come to me after watching a rare gem of a film, “Ride The High Country” (1962), regarded by many as the first great film directed by Sam Peckinpah. A moral tale set in the last days of the West, when the first cars were driven in California and most of the old gunslingers were already dead or scrapping a living as ageing circus attractions. Continue reading