Though there are many types of American films, perhaps the most genuinely American of all is the western. Beginning in the silent film era and reaching its zenith in the 50s and 60s, the classic western dramatizes the human struggle to conquer an untamed country, the mythic landscapes of plains and deserts and the hostility of Indians and outlaws. And built around these struggles are the primitive and personal codes of honor and justice the hero develops in order to survive in a morally ambiguous universe. This course will view and discuss some of the classics of the western genre: "Stagecoach," "The Gunfighter," "Shane," "High Noon," "The Searchers," "The Magnificent Seven," "The Wild Bunch," and "Unforgiven." Return with us, then, to those glorious days of yesteryear, when the cowboy was king and the western was among the most prolific films coming out of Hollywood.