Monday, March 2, 2009

Spaghetti Western Review


Le Pistole Non Discutono 1964
This is the film that Jolly Films of Rome and the other producing companies were putting their hopes and money into while tossing a bone to an unknown director named Sergio Leone, giving him film ends and minimal financing to shoot a movie called The Magnificent Stranger which featured a little-known American TV actor named Clint Eastwood. BULLETS DON'T ARGUE, directed by Mario Caiano, starred Rod Cameron, a bigger nameat the time than Eastwood, as Pat Garrett, with Horst Frank and Angel Aranda as Billy and George Clanton, thus mixing two old west legends into an early American-style spaghetti western. It kind of reminded me of the Budd Boetticher/Randolph Scott westerns of the late fifties, with Cameron as the stoic, older authority figure bringing in the wild, younger outlaws, and is pretty darned good, doing what it sets out to do. Oddly enough the highlight of Morricone's score is the song Lonesome Billy, about the elder of the outlaw brothers. BTW I think this is the film that did so poorly at the Italian box office that it prompted Variety to report that spaghetti westerns were dead, a week or so before the Leone/Eastwood film, retitled A FISTFUL OF DOLLARS, turned the film world on its ear.

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