Vera Cruz (1954)

Robert Aldrich directs Gary Cooper, Burt Lancaster and Caesar Romero in this action western where a struggling plantation owner and a gregarious bandit become mercenaries for the Mexican emperor.

A cowboy action extravaganza with the unusual twist that the white hat and the black hat become friends. Vera Cruz is a progenitor of both the spaghetti western and the buddy movie. This is an electric entertainment, powered by the fact we know our stars are going to have revert back to their natures and face off over the gold, girls and freedom fighters floating around the plot. The ending is thrilling and unpredictable. Lancaster is all teeth and smiling menace in one of his best early roles.

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