Cattle baron George Washington McLintock (John Wayne) is living the single life on his ranch. He is estranged from his wife Katherine (Maureen O’Hara), who left him two years before, suspecting him of adultery. He holds a record for throwing his hat up onto the longhorn-shaped weather vane at the top of his house every time he comes home drunk. McLintock hires beautiful widow Louise Warren (Yvonne De Carlo) as his cook and welcomes both her and her two children into his home. He also butts heads with Douglas, a sleazy bureaucrat who is looking to discredit McLintock, settle the territory, and remove the local Indians. Sparks begin to fly as an unexpected turn of events results in brawls, gunfire, an Indian attack…and the return of Mrs. McLintock, who wants custody over their daughter Becky (Stefanie Powers) (returning from college) and a divorce from G.W.


It is no secret that I love westerns and comedies, so when I found out that McLintock! was a western comedy, I was super stoked to see it…not to mention it starred John Wayne, Maureen O’Hara, and Yvonne de Carlo.

The premise of the film is that G.W. McLintock is retired from Indian hunting, or something of the sort, and is now a rancher, but suddenly, out of the blue his estranged wife shows up and throws things out of whack. The rest of the film is spent trying to convince the audience that she doesn’t still have feelings for him, even though it is quite apparent she does.

So, that may not sound like the most interesting of plots, unless you’re into chick flicks, but it actually works, and isn’t anywhere near as sappy as it sounds.

If you’re looking for your typical shootout type western, you won’t get it with McLintock!, I’m sorry to tell you. There actually are no gunfights, cattle rustlers, or anything of the sort, but there are Indians, if that helps.

This film seems to be more focused on showing life on the homestead and proving that everything in the west wasn’t fantastic duel at high noon and such. If that was the idea, than I think it did a damn good job of it.

The cast is outstanding! Wayne and O’Hara are great together as always, but Patrick Wayne (John’s real life son) really gets a chance to shine. I personally think that Yvonne de Carlo was either over hyped or underused here, though I’m not sure which.

If there is a flaw to this film, it has to be that it never really made me laugh. Sure, there were some chuckles, but for a film that is a “western comedy”, I expected to at least guffaw a couple of times, and that just didn’t happen.

Still, this is a film worthy of the Duke’s legacy. Should you see it? Yes, it has comedy, action, romance, and hint of deception…something for everyone. I give this one a high recommendation, but be wary that this isn’t your typical western.

4 out of 5 stars


One Response to “McLintock!”

  1. […] if your dad is the immortal John Wayne! Patrick Wayne is not his father. If you’ve seen McLintock! you learned that, but he is a capable actor in his own right, portraying a character that would do […]

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