Originally Posted by Teacher
I know Wayne was older when he did the character, though it's been so long that I don't remember most of the details from that version. However, I believe Bridges's Cogburn was supposed to have been closer to that age, just extremely haggard from a hard and bitter life. Recall that the very end was twenty-five years after-the-fact, and he'd just died. It's possible he could have lived into his late 80s or 90s back then, but I doubt that was what they were going for.
No, the book says he was 68 when he died in 1903. Saw the movie last night. It was okay, but that's about all I can say. For all the acclaim Hailee Steinfeld has been getting for the acting job she did, she just didn't seem right for the role--she looked too much like what she is, a nice Jewish girl from the San Fernando Valley, with full, sensual lips. What was needed was a prim, grim, thin-lipped Scotch-Irish type, and she just wasn't that. The actress they had playing the adult Mattie at the end looked better for the part. The part about La Boeuf getting roped, dragged and shot was not in the book, and it made little sense in the movie: After getting badly roughed up and receiving a through and through bullet wound in the upper body, he seems amazing spry within a day or two! In the novel, La Boeuf was with Mattie and Rooster in the cabin and then collaborated with Rooster in the ambush. He received a minor flesh wound from splinters when a bullet struck the stock of his carbine.