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THE ELECTRIC HORSEMAN: Blu-ray (Columbia/Universal, 1979) Universal Home Video

There is a word for a man who surrenders his personal integrity to opportunism and blind ambition: sell-out. Director Sydney Pollack’s The Electric Horseman (1979) tells such a tale – about honor, hard-won, yet almost sacrificed on the altar of consumerism; gradually, to be reclaimed, then restored to its rightful place, if only to find no better hearth than a man’s soul.  In diverse careers of much acclaim, The Electric Horseman finds its two stars, Robert Redford and Jane Fonda, as well as Pollack, at a crossroads; the seventies’ verve for the bucolic folk – simple, homespun, and yet strangely doomed to extinction, despite their resilience in the face of progress, endlessly re-purposed throughout the decade in movies and on television. For a while, Hollywood found a myriad of ways to exploit the wheat belt to purposeful effect and good solid box office. And indeed, our titular hero, 5-time rodeo riding champion, Norman ‘Sonny’ Steele (Redford), is a man apart from his time; the orig…

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