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Hearts of the West

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Published on Jan 23, 2014

Iowa farm boy Lewis Tater has a brainstorm: instead of continuing the correspondence courses that are learnin' him to write cowboy novels, he'll travel to the out-West school itself and soak up the campus atmosphere first hand. He arrives to find the school is a postal box. Write 'em, cowboy. Tater's adventures don't stop there in an acclaimed tumbling tumbleweed of a film that has him earning his spurs in the yippie-yi-o of '30s "B" Westerns, complete with a veteran sagebrusher (Andy Griffith), a savvy script girl (Blythe Danner) and a hilariously inept director (Alan Arkin, the New York Film Critics Award choice as the year's Best Supporting Actor). Jeff Bridges plays Tater, a likable pilgrim as fresh-faced and innocent as Bridges's decades-later Rooster Cogburn in True Grit is worn and wise.

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