Not quite the outright remake of The Wild Bunch it's often written up as, but still by some distance Walter Hill's most explicit homage to Sam Peckinpah. Based on a story by John Milius, 1987's Extreme Prejudice pitches upright Texas Ranger Jack Benteen (a suitably monolithic Nick Nolte) against old buddy Cash Bailey (a colourfully demented Powers Boothe), a former DEA enforcer turned major drug baron who's flooding the US with massive amounts of cocaine from his Mexican fortress, where he's surrounded by a small army of heavily-armed desperadoes.

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Extreme Prejudice

Not quite the outright remake of The Wild Bunch it’s often written up as, but still by some distance Walter Hill’s most explicit homage to Sam Peckinpah. Based on a story by John Milius, 1987’s Extreme Prejudice pitches upright Texas Ranger Jack Benteen (a suitably monolithic Nick Nolte) against old buddy Cash Bailey (a colourfully demented Powers Boothe), a former DEA enforcer turned major drug baron who’s flooding the US with massive amounts of cocaine from his Mexican fortress, where he’s surrounded by a small army of heavily-armed desperadoes. Thrown into this volatile mix are Michael Ironside’s black ops team, covert specialists in mayhem, out to retrieve secret documents from the increasingly fucked-up Cash.

There are echoes galore of classic westerns, a Hawksian sense of duty and honour in Jack’s conflicted loyalty (does he side with his former friend or the people who want to bring him down?) and powerhouse performances from Nolte, Boothe, Ironside and Rip Torn. The body count is staggering and the set-pieces terrific?including a cantina shoot-out, a roadhouse gunfight, a brilliant bank robbery sequence and, of course, Hill’s reprise of the Bunch’s bloody last stand.