JUNIOR BONNER (Theatrical Release USA 1972)

Ben Meyers’ rating: 4.6|5.0 Stars ìììì

Junior Bonner—
a classic rodeo movieexcels in realism, presentation, and outstanding acting. 

Film Poster Courtesy of Wikipedia


Junior Bonner (Steve McQueen), whose specialty is riding broncs and bulls, is in the last days of his rodeo career. He has just failed riding a tough bull named Sunshine. He moves on to Prescott, Arizona, his familial home, to get ready for the Prescott rodeo. His arrogant brother, Curly Bonner (Joe Don Baker), is in mobile home real estate. Junior Bonner’s father, Ace Bonner (Robert Preston), is in the hospital for drunk driving. His mother, Elvira Bonner (Ida Lupino), is separated from her husband. Junior Bonner finds that his father wants to go to Australia. Junior Bonner bribes his manager, Buck Roan (Ben Johnson), to allow him to ride the bull, Sunshine, one more time.

Additional Thanks

Best work for Director Sam Peckinpah. Thank you to Producer Joe Wizan and Associate Producer Mickey Borofsky for making the film possible. Additional characters/cast include: Charmagne (Barbara Leigh) and Ruth Bonner (Mary Murphy).

Buy a ticket? Yes? No? Maybe?

Yes. Be aware that this film works on a rather depressing storyline, but completely works as an exceptionally realistic portrayal of rodeo life without the support of a family and children. Excellent drama.

Video Critique Available Here:

Ben Meyers

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