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1960s, WESTERN

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)

Elevator Pitch.

A couple of gunmen, running a scam involving getting reward money for one and then preventing him being hanged, hear that there is a fortune in gold hidden in a grave in a cemetery and so must travel across the country during the US Civil War, forced to remain together because one knows the name of the cemetery and the other the name on the grave. They are pursued by a third on the same quest, who at times takes them prisoner, but fortune and the conflict usually allow them to escape.

Content.

A whole load of set pieces some on a small scale involving a few gunmen stalking down deserted streets and shooting each other, and others involving the prisoners in POW camps and whole battalions of troops with field guns and machine guns taking each other on, with our heroes being no more than observers. The protagonists bicker and give each other a hard time, or sometimes others give them a hard time. There is smoking and drinking, but no nudity or sex.

A View I should say to start with that this outing has, as the last of the “Dollars Trilogy”, been considered to be one of the most influential westerns ever made, and is on many people’s lists of the best ever films made.  I’m not sure which version I watched (there have been several) but it was too long anyway, and the random use of artillery fire was disconcerting. If you are interested in movie history maybe you should watch it, but you could catch up with your knitting at the same time.
Duration 2h 28m (or more) Rating (UK) X
Source of story The man with no name had already been featured in “A Fistful of Dollars” et al, but otherwise an original screenplay.
Director Sergio Leone
Writers/Script Agenore Incrocci, Furio Scarpelli, Luciano Vincenzoni, Sergio Leone
Starring Eli Wallach, Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef plus a load of Spanish and Italian actors.
Additional Info Despite being called a “Spaghetti Western” it was made in Spain, using the Spanish army as extras. Many of the scenes were filmed in the mountains to the north of Madrid and in the area around Burgos, as well as in the desert to the south.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels

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