When the Wyoming Cattlemen's Association sends a horde of hired guns led by Christopher Walken to drive squatters off their land, marshal Kris Kristofferson does his best to avert the seemingly inevitable massacre, with both men taking time out for visits with frontier prostitute Isabelle Huppert. Following his DEER HUNTER triumph, director Michael Cimino was handed "final cut" — but then went 400% over budget. Derided by its critics, United Artists withdrew and recut the film after a week of release in December 1980, then dumped an hour-shorter version on audiences, who repaid only $1.5 million of the film's $44 million budget. But after the complete version was released in Europe, critics praised it as a masterpiece and turned it into a cause célèbre. Now the complete 219-minute version that played for only one week in 1980 has been restored, highlighting the gorgeous Vilmos Zsigmond cinematography and featuring a full-stereo soundtrack for the very first time. DIR/SCR Michael Cimino; PROD Joann Carelli. U.S., 1980, color, 219 min plus a 15-min intermission. RATED R
AFI Member passes accepted.