Silverado is arguably the best western ever filmed. Four unlikely heroes band together to defeat a corrupt sherrif and his posse that have taken over the town of Silverado. Superbly written and acted, this film singly handly revived the western genre according to the Washington Post review when Silverado was released in 1985. Kevin Kline plays Paden, a drifter who falls into bad times. Kline mixes humor and action to portray the gambler who thinks no town with a tavern can be all that bad. Kline is always best at comedy, so it’s kind of a suprise to see him tackle an adventure role. Danny Glover plays Malakai, a black man who is traveling from Chicago to Silverado to help his father and mother, local farmers. Because of his skin color, he is refused service everywhere. Glover does well as the cowboy segregated against because of his skin color. His dramatic scenes are done with a gentle tenderness, and his action scenes done with a ice-cold hardness. Scott Glenn plays Emmett, a man traveling to reunite with his family after being released from jail. Emmett is the unspoken “leader” of the four heroes. As Emmett, he is calm and cool under pressure - he knows what to do and how to do it. Still, his acting seems a bit subdued, and is not near his usual high level of quality seen in “Hunt for Red October” or “Courage Under Fire”. Kevin Costner joins the main cast as Jake, Emmett’s younger brother. This was Costner’s first film role (he was cut out of “Big Chill”) and he storms into Hollywood with a bang. Costner plays Jake with a crazy edge, making you wonder if they both are. Flamboyant, exciteable, Jake’s best line is “I can’t have no kid following me around everywhere I go”, although, in reality, Jake is the biggest kid around. Brian Dennehy, Roseanna Arquette, Linda Hunt, Brion James and John Cleese round out the cast as supporting characters. Dennehy is an old friend of Paden’s with a secret, Arquette is the woman Paden and Emmett are torn between, James is the leader of a group of settlers who are in danger of losing everything they own and Cleese is the sherrif of a small town who has odd ideas about justice. Lawrence Kasdan co-wrote and directed this incredible film. He also served as script writer on Raiders of the Lost Ark and two Star Wars films (he translated George Lucas’ story into script form). The direction on this film is very subtle: very simple wide shots and close ups. Unfortunatly, the movie is available only in pan and scan version on VHS tape. The letterbox version (2.35:1) offers twice as much image as the VHS, and it adds to the panoramic quality of this movie and the wonderful scenery.