True Grit A John Wayne Original Tops The Remake

true grit

“True Grit 1969″

Which do you prefer?  Most people have their own opinion on which release of “True Grit”  was the better movie.  The original “True Grit” starring John Wayne as Rooster Cogburn or the new version starring Jeff Bridges in that same role.

My vote goes to the John Wayne original.  The part of Rooster has been identified with John Wayne for many years.  No one can quite replicate  the gruff, cantankerous,  tough talking Duke.

“True Grit” has aired for a long time on TV and video and has become almost a classic.  Maybe that’s why the second movie falls a little short. “True Grit” was responsible for John Wayne winning his only Academy Award.

Compared to the new movie the original acting seems a bit stilted, and the filming of poor quality.  We have to take into account that things were done differently in 1969.  For its day it was done well.  Its true the new version of the movie had better photography and  better, more modern  acting.  It was advertised as not a remake, but rather a new screenplay following the Charles Portis novel of 1968.  In fact, some of the scenes and lines were identical to the original movie which had been based on that same novel.

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Jeff Bridges did a fine job in the new movie.  He just was not the Duke.  The role of Rooster was always identified with  John Wayne till now.  Probably he will always be identified with that role.  The original Rooster came off as a  half drunk, angry, broken man sporting an eye patch who lived to do away with bad guys.  The new Rooster, while showing the same qualities, still seemed to be softer underneath his gruff exterior.

Both men did a good job in their  interaction with  Mattie Ross, the young girl who needed help.  She was a younger person in the new version.  Both actresses played excellent roles.  I’m not sure I have a favorite between those two.

If there had not been the original version to use as a comparison I’d have loved the new “True Grit”.  As it stands when you are devoted to the old version the new one just cannot quite measure up.  Maybe if you were not already a fan of the John Wayne “True Grit” you may favor the Jeff Bridges “True Grit”.

Regardless of which version you prefer “True Grit” was a Western to be enjoyed.

Comments

  1. mvmiller says:

    I have yet to see a remake of any movie that was worth watching! Why can’t the idiots in Hollywood understand that they cannot improve on the great movies and actors of the past, especially a John Wayne movie?!!! Stop trying to copy the greats of the past and create new!

    • myrtle truelove says:

      you are so right love bridges but he is no john wayne dialog not right can’t see any western person talking so proper . no remake is ever better so they need to stop

    • C. Wayne Wilson says:

      John Wayne still is the best actor in the world. Nobody can fill his boots in any remake. They can try but will always fall short. A great all american ICON!!!!!!!!!!!

    • C.Fields says:

      I love John Wayne movies all of them.No one can replace him in any way.I did watch the remake it was good for what it was but it still was not the Duke.If its not broken don’t try and fix it!!

  2. BudLeone says:

    Nothing nor anyone could ever be better than the Duke!!!!

  3. ddbennett says:

    I wholeheartedly agree with the above comment. You just can’t remake the Duke. He was a natural at what he did and the parts he played. In my opinion, Jeff Bridges, in spite of the good actor he is, just didn’t pull it off. It seemed obvious to me that he strained to portray the gruff yet likeable character that John Wayne did so seamlessly. My husband and I saw the new version of the movie together, and as soon as it ended and the lights came back on, we both said, “It’s just not the Duke,” and at least half the people in the theater were saying the same thing.

  4. Christi Basquez says:

    I have seen many remakes of a variety of different movies, some horrible, some fair and some good. I didn’t want to see this remake however. I knew NO actors would come close to making this remake half way decent. ( also it felt like I would be cheating on my Hero ) But my brother talked me into watching the new one. I think Jeff Bridges is a great actor,I love all of his movies I have seen before, and the rest of the cast were good, but People lets face it, it was blasphemy to even consider making it, much less to actually do it. No one, and I mean NO ONE, can hold a candle to John Wayne, and they should never try !! And that’s all I have to say about that.

  5. jackie cooper says:

    No one can fill John wayne’s boots just saying why try

  6. Dee Hoefs says:

    The remake was not a bad movie but their is not a living or passed western actor that can top John Wayne. There are other actors that are good western actors but he was and is the best. Love John Wayne movies!

  7. Jenny Bridger says:

    I am a big John Wayne fan, and this summer I even journeyed to Monument Valley. I enjoyed the remade True Grit immensely, far more than the original, which, overall, I found a mediocre film. Give the new one a chance. Liking it more, if you do, takes nothing away from Wayne’s stature.

  8. Dan says:

    I like the remake but it makes Rooster look like a blithering drunkard with little regard for anything but his bottle. I like Jeff Bridges but I still prefer the original. The dialog is almost verbatim but the persona is not there. I give Jeff a high score but the Duke is tough to beat.

  9. Michael says:

    Speaking for myself, I would find it impossible to watch the remake and set aside John Wayne’s place. Not having seen the remake I suspect Jeff Bridge knew what he faced, and did his best knowing that only John Wayne could be John Wayne.

  10. irma says:

    the new
    remake sucked john wayne should come back 2 life and shoot everyone who
    had anything 2 do with it there r no words 2 really say how bad that remake was

  11. I had the pleasure of working with John Wayne. “The Duke” BartonMacLeod.com

  12. Russ Brown says:

    My preference has to be the original, partly out of loyalty to Duke Wayne, but also because, and this is possibly because I am English, I found the dialogue difficult to understand in the remake.

    That said, I think Hailee Steinfeld was the best Mattie by farm, great young actress and she could really ride, Kim Darby used a stunt double wearing a prosthetic mask for everything above a walk.

  13. Sandy says:

    No one could ever fill the Dukes shoes in a movie or anything . So why in the world would they think they could remake the one that he got his oscar in is way stupid…I am a big fan watch his movies whenever they are on TV also have a lot of them on tapes….have a lot of figures and pictures he is A True American and A true Hero….Only one Duke…

  14. Kate says:

    I love the Bridges Brothers, but no one can play “Rooster Cogburn”, but Mr. Wayne. It’s kind of a bad deal that he won his only Academy Award, as he said “.If I knew wearing a patch over my eye would get me an Oscar, I would have worn one years ago”. They gave the Oscar to him because they knew he was sick and did not have a lot of time left. “True Grit” with Mr. Wayne, was a good movie but in the entire body of his work there were many movies where he should have won an “Academy Award”.

    A little known bit of trivia… Mr. Wayne, wanted “Karen Carpenter”, the beautiful voiced singer, who sang with her brother Richard Carpenter, in the group “The Carpenters”. Karen, sadly passed away in 1983, at the young age of 32.

    Mr. Wayne, met her at a function and thought she would make a perfect actress for Kim Darby’ part. Sorry but Ms. Darby’s acting was so un-impressive, that I can not even think of her characters name. Karen was even given a script by him. Mr. Wayne, really wanted Karen for the role. But as we all know, it was not to be. The suits, at the time did not think a singer and a movie unknown could pull it off. I know they were very wrong.

    If anyone out there wonders why I refer to John Wayne, as Mr. Wayne. It is that many years ago I was his bodyguard, protection, for just a few hours one day. He was a gentleman to me that day and even though I had to look up at him, his reply to having a female assigned to protect him was one I have never forgot, “will honey, if they sent you to guard me, then you must know what your doing”. Followed by a hug from him that made me think every bone in my body was broken. When I greeted him that day it was as Mr. Wayne and that is still how I refer to him.

  15. Pam says:

    John Wayne rocks as Rooster Cogburn and any other character he played. Didn’t even go see the remake……..Bridges is ok but there’s no one like the Duke!!

  16. Like quite a few of you I had no desire to go see the remake. There is only one “Rooster Cogburn” and that is Mr. John “Duke” Wayne. I to like Jeff Bridges and his brothers as actors but he will never fill that role, nor anyone else. John Wayne was the characters he played, rough, tough, and a real dislike for injustice. There will never be another like him.

  17. Ed Pruneda says:

    There is only one John Wayne nobody will ever replace him, the new true grit was good one of the best make over but never replace the original.

  18. Jo DeMarc says:

    I’ve seen both & I think the original is much better. As the saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

  19. Dan says:

    I am a huge John Wayne fan and I also like Jeff Bridges but an actor can only portray what is written for them. True Grit is a favorite of mine as well as Rooster Cogburn but the Jeff Bridges version killed Rooster as a side show cowboy which I didn’t care for. The Duke liked to “pull a cork” but did his job and the Jeff Bridges portrayal made Rooster an angry and vengeful drunk which I didn’t care for. Plus killing Rooster or allowing him to drink himself to death left no room for Rooster Cogburn and the lady which I also enjoy. As well as Jeff Bridges did in acting I still have to give my vote for the original plus…you can’t replace Strother Martin either. I didn’t like the fancy talking Texas Ranger that replaced Glen Campbell either.

  20. Vern Walters says:

    There is no way that they can reproduct John wayne in any of his movies using another actor. John Wayne had certain way of his own that no one else will ever be able to copy. Why can’t they like someone else said just move on and make new movies and make new icon movies and actors. Man is Hollywood got alot of stupid rich people making movies. They just like our politicians seem to be so far outta touch of what the American people really want and or need. To bad they have no ability to see and hear what the Americans are saying they want or need. Maybe they should open their eyes and ears up and take a good listening and hearing to what is what don’t you think.

  21. Alfred Somerville says:

    Long livr the legend of the Duke! Jeff Bridges is a great actor, but John Wayne was the true and original Rooster, and nobody can improve on that Oscar-winning performance.

  22. Terry Duck says:

    John Wayne has always been my favorite. I’ve watched him since I was a little kid. He always stood for something good in life. Whenever I would get to feeling beat down I would turn to an old John Wayne movie and it would put me back on track and make me feel better. I must have watched some of his movies a hundred times. My wife would say “Why are you watching that old movie again?” She just never really understood what makes me tick.

    Rio Bravo is my favorite because I loved Dean Martin and Ricky Nelson. You through John Wayne in there and it’s an unbeatable combination. I have to watch them every time they come on.

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