Cineleet has a neat post about a few movies that have the basic tenet of a Western film (morality tales featuring an antihero, code of honor and ruthless villains) for guys who don't like Westerns.
Take this Japanese samurai flick, for instance:
This film, along with Seven Samurai, is the prototype for what would be known as the Spaghetti Western. Both are directed by Akira Kurosawa, a master at his craft. Kurosawa himself was inspired by the classic westerns of John Ford, (and also in part by film noir and Dashiell Hammett novels) so in a way this could be considered an “Eastern”. The hero is a nameless wandering swordsman (Toshiro Mifune) who happens to wander into a village where two rival gangs are feuding over who gets to subjugate the local villagers, and take their resources. Perhaps acting out of a sense of justice (though he would never admit it) this bodyguard, or yojimbo, decides to pit the two gangs against each other, to the benefit of the villagers. The two gangs inevitably destroy each other, the villagers are saved, and Mifune’s nameless swordsman wanders off into the sunset.
Link - Thanks David!
7 samurai and Yojimbo were both remade as westerns not the other wat round.
jessleigh, don't tell me he doesn't even like Blazing Saddles! By the way, what kind of films does your guy like? War flicks perhaps? Kelly's Heroes kind of mixes the rough and tumble feel of a western (and has Clint to boot!), with bits of comedy and heist-flick tension in a WWII setting. If he hasn't seen it, check it out!