Western movies have a reputation of being just about gunfights and outlaws, and while there are no shortage of movies like that, check out this list of 10 good western movies if you are looking for something a bit deeper. In the right hands, a western movie can keep you on the edge of your seat, have heart-pounding action, and make you think about important questions, all at the same time.

  1. "Unforgiven". Clint Eastwood starred in and directed this masterpiece about a retired outlaw who is talked into taking one last job. Eastwood’s character blurs the line between hero and villain and the end will leave you gasping and thinking.

  2. "The Good, The Bad and The Ugly". Clint Eastwood was in more than his fair share of good western movies, and here he teamed up director Sergio Leone, who along with Eastwood helped invent the spaghetti western. Ennio Morricone’s score ties together this film about three very different men who need each other to capture a golden treasure.

  3. "Shane". "Shane" is the perfect example of a good western movie that doesn’t have to be just a loose plot tying gunfights together. Everything about this movie is good, from the acting to the vistas to the cinematography. If you’re looking for a western with a little depth, check out “Shane.”

  4. "Magnificent Seven". This movie is a remake of Akira Kurosawa’s classic “Seven Samurai,” and while not quite as good as the original, is still a good western movie. A small town is about to be attacked and the resident send for help. Seven noble gunfighters gather to offer their help and protec the town.

  5. "High Noon". Gary Cooper is perfect here as a lawman who has to face a vengeful enemy from his past, only to find out that he’ll have to do it all alone. “High Noon” is a perfect example of the classic western movie battle between right and wrong.

  6. "Red River". John Wayne stars in this tale of a tyrannical cattle man and his surrogate son as they try to drive cattle north out of Texas. Wayne gives what is possibly his greatest performance here, telling entire stories with just the turn of his head.

  7. "Tombstone". A somewhat fictionalized retelling of the shoot-out at the OK Corral. Kurt Russell is good as Wyatt Earp, but Val Kilmer steals the show as the lovably drunk Doc Holliday. The film is fast faced, action packed and has just enough suspense to keep you watching.

  8. "Once Upon a Time in the West". Sergio Leone directed this big-budget western epic and he shows off his years of skill behind the camera. When you include a compelling story, excellent acting and a haunting score, you have one of the greatest western movies of all time.

  9. "No Country for Old Men". The most recent movie on this list of good western movies, this Cohen Brother’s adaptation of a Cormac McCarthy novel is as disturbing as it is depressing. Far from a feel-good romp, this movie makes you think about what’s important in life and how age affects us all.

  10. "The Searchers". John Wayne and John Ford combine to create one of the best movies ever made. “The Searchers” follows Ethan Edwards in his quest to retrieve his niece from her Indian captors. As time goes on, Edward’s motivations begin to get muddied once he realizes his niece doesn’t want to be rescued.