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The Long Riders

HD   R Closed Captioning

Walter Hill

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About the Movie

The Keachs, the Carradines, the Quaids and the Guests take on the roles of the James, Young, Miller, and Ford brothers in Walter Hill's mythic retelling of the James-Younger outlaw legend. The film begins as outlaws are robbing a bank. After the robbery Ed Miller (Dennis Quaid) finds himself kicked out of the gang when his brothers Clell (Randy Quaid) and Jesse James (James Keach) mutually agree to hand over his share of the money and tell him to leave because of his unnecessary killing during the robbery. The rest of the gang decides to split up for awhile. Cole Younger (David Carradine) travels to Texas with his prostitute girlfriend Belle Starr (Pamela Reed) while the James boys return to their wives and farms. The gang reunites after the brief respite to rob a well-stocked bank in Northfield, Minnesota. The robbery is a disaster and most of the gang ends up either wounded or dying. The James boys are the only ones not seriously hurt, and escaping while they can, they leave the rest of the gang behind. After the James boys leave, the remnants of the gang are captured. But trailing the Jameses is a relentless posse. Frank and Jesse manage to keep one step ahead until the Ford brothers (Christopher Guest and Nicholas Guest) make a deal with the Pinkerton detectives trailing the outlaws.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 22
  • Fresh: 18
  • Rotten: 4
  • Average Rating: 6.5/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: Hill is very much in the American grain, the inheritor of the Ford-Hawks-Walsh tradition of artful, understated action film making. – Richard Schickel, TIME Magazine, Oct 7, 2011

Rotten: What's ultimately missing is a definable point of view which would tie together the myriad events on display and fill in the blanks which Hill has imposed on the action by sapping it of emotional or historical meaning. – Variety Staff, Variety, Jul 7, 2010

Fresh: Sacrificing investigations into the mentality behind America's most feared band of outlaws, Hill plumps for an evocation of time and place. He does a magnificent job. – Film4, Jun 24, 2010

Fresh: A beautiful, laconic and unsentimental film. – Geoff Andrew, Time Out, Feb 5, 2008

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

The Best

This has some of the most exciting action sequences of any movie, of any genre. The Long Riders holds up amazingly well for its 28 years, sadly it seems to have almost been forgotten. Please rent this and spread the good word.

Good shoot-em-up western!

This is one of the best outlaw movies I've ever seen. Dozens of horse chases, gunfights, and explosions. Just a flat out good western. Rent it.

The Long Riders

A true western. Real brothers playing real brothers with a story line that the truest, historical portrayal of the James-Younger gang. This is my favorite western. If you like Tombstone, you'll like this one. Ry Cooder's score is equally outstanding. Overlooked, underrated and underappreciated. Buy or rent this - you won't be disappointed. Great lines too. If you like this, rent Souther Comfort too.