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... but i still want to jostle in with more than half of a thousand
other reviews just to type: this is undoubtedly THE best Western movie
ever and easily one of the best masterpieces of all time. Even the most
noble adjectives preserved particularly for art praising found in
Merriam- Webster are too mundane to captivate its greatness.
Please watch this classic before you die.
R.I.P Leone and thank you for blessing your fellow humans such a great gift.
P.S: Eli Wallach + Lee Van Cleef + Clint Eastwood = the most bad-ass narrow- eyes gang in Hollywood.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Sergio Leone's massive epic is one of my favorite films, pitting a
manic Eli Wallach as Tuco against an autistic Clint Eastwood (Leone:
Eastwood has two acting emotions, with hat on and hat off). Lee Van
Cleef hovers around the the center of the film menacing everyone,
although his performance fades between the tension of Wallach and
Eastwood. Ostensibly a story about the search for buried gold, GBU
undercuts its exploitative surface by giving us almost Beckett-like
relationship between a man that is wanted for murder and his partner
who turns him in for the reward and then shoots the rope off his neck,
a droll comment on human existence if there ever was one. Other
existential moments occur in this rich film, such as the beautiful song
the confederate prisoners sing while Angel-Eyes tortures Tuco, and the
essay on the nature of the futility and pointless brutality of war
appears when Tuco and Blondie witness a battle on a bridge they must
Chaotic, cynical, sentimental, violent, GBU resembles an opera more than anything. Amazingly, when this film first appeared in 1967, most critics wrote it off as one more Spaghetti Western, not seeing the fatalism, the grandeur, and the comedy of this world classic. How could you watch a film with a score like Morricone's finest and not be impressed? Don't mistake this film for realism and criticize it on that basis, as some reviewers have done. This is not a documentary-style Western (for that see McCabe & Mrs. Miller), but a Romance, based more in the imagination, more in symbolism, bowing to the classical westerns stereotypes and clichés.
As I was scrolling through IMDb 250, I saw "Il buono, il brutto, il cattivo" at #4. My initial thought "Huh, 1966 movie, not worth watching. Runtime(179 min) also convinced my mind against watching this. But another half of my mind said, "Dude, you can't afford miss an IMDb #4 movie. So, I saw the movie and till date I have watched it at least 25 times. Hats off to Sergio Leone for making such a great and legendary movie and that too in 1966 with limited resources. None of the "Spagetti Westerns" are close such brilliance, not even the other 2 in this series. Leone has extracted out a stupendous performance from "Eli Wallach". Clint Eastwood was good as usual. Shooting locations are brilliant and the supportive background score is very catchy. The movie is a bit slow in the beginning, but once it catches pace, it deeply involves the audience. Some people have argued that #4 is too high for this movie, but its not 'some' who make the IMDb list, its the majority. Speaking of Leone, I believe that he was at least 15-20 years ahead of time. He has served as inspirations for such genre in all parts of the world, be it 'Sholay' in India, 'El Desaro' in Spain, and many more. I would like to go with a 9 out of 10 for this movie and its a flick which you just can't afford to miss this
One of the best depictions of war, and one of the best anti-war films.
The best gunfight ever filmed. Consistently witty, often moving,
brutally realistically ugly, and one of the most beautiful films ever
shot, set to one of the most beautiful scores. The 'spaghetti' label on
the can means that these westerns will never get the consideration and
respect they deserve.
If you fancy thinking a little differently about 'The Good, The Bad and The Ugly', try the following. Look past Clint Eastwood's legend-founding performance and suppose that the central character is actually Eli Wallach's Tuco, the Ugly. A gross rogue, guilty of every possible vice, Tuco is after all the character we see and hear the most, about whom we learn the most, and through whom we experience much of the action. Eli Wallach makes him comic, poignant, and plausible - certainly compared to the unrestrained darkness of Lee Van Cleef and the impossible cool of Eastwood. The film is largely Tuco's struggle to survive, and to earn a little on the side, constantly battered between Eastwood's "blond Angel" and Van Cleef's angel of death. Angels? Indeed: Tuco is ultimately human, and Tuco is all of us - grubby, corrupt, uncomfortable and slightly desperate humans, veering between the good and the bad, subject to a perplexing God and an unrelenting Devil, and just trying to muddle along.
There are certain things in life that are unexplainable and
incomprehensible in their magnitude. These exalted anomalies include -
in no particular order - Revolver, Guernica, The Sistine Chapel, The
Ninth Symphony, The Waste Land, Macbeth and then there is this.
This movie expresses a gamut of emotions; every new scene shows a side of a character that one thought was unimaginable; the acting is nothing less than breathtaking and the use of sound and music is unprecedented.
I don't often make bold, sweeping statements, but here goes: this movie could not have been made any better in any regard possible.
Tarantino was quoted as saying that this movie is the best directed movie of all time; who am I to disagree with him? 10/10 without a shadow of a doubt.
P.S. I would have given it ten even if it were based on the Standoff alone.
In the late sixties and early seventies, in the days before video and DVD, I used to regularly go out to watch the Dollar movies in the West End of London. What more can you say about this fabulous movie that hasn't already been said. Not much more. To me the music makes it. I really think this is the greatest sound track of all time. There was a cover version of the title theme by Hugo Montenegro that was No 1 in the UK hit parade for at least 6 weeks and I can remember Jimmy Saville in his Blondie outfit with cheroot introducing the record on Top of The Pops. So this movie, the music and the characters were constantly in the public consciousness and at the office we were constantly using the line "There are two types of people in the world my friend...." To all the people who haven't yet seen this movie - lucky you. Do yourself a favor and go and get it. You won't be disappointed.
Before watching this movie, I have seen A Fistful of Dollars and For a
Few Dollars more and I was quite impressed with both. However, after I
have seen this, Leone instantly became one of my favorite directors.
Leone has a distinct style in his films and this movie pulls it out
The cinematography in this film is incredible. His use of extreme long shots and extreme close ups are unsurpassed. The film opens with the close up of a man with an expressionless face creating a sense of mystery and excitement. What will this guy going to do? What's going to happen? Then we are introduced to two new unknown men and the three walk towards the entrance. Silence. Then suddenly, the 3 bust in, guns are shot and Tuco busts through the window and escapes with a half eaten chicken (or pork) leg. One of the men is injured, tries to make a futile final attempt to kill him and falls to the floor; the other 2 are already dead. Just in that one scene, we are introduced to Tuco and can already guess his character, his background info, and skill... without a single spoken line of dialogue.
As a matter of fact, nobody speaks until about 10 minutes into the film. It is all visual. We, the audience, are forced to imagine what the characters are thinking, what might be taking place. Leone gives the viewers a chance to guess what might happen. Even in Once Upon a Time in the West, we see his mastery at the No-Dialogue introduction. I also believe that this is his way to introduce the character's personality traits without the viewers actually knowing that they know it. A subtle technique so when they see a character do something later in the movie, the viewers can accept the character's actions.
However, Leone would not be as great as he is if it wasn't for his partner Ennio Morricone and his unique and memorable soundtrack. The coyote-like music sets the mood for this film like no other western. It is something you must listen to and experience it to retain the full appreciation of it, and know why it has become the trademark music for the western genre.
These techniques go on throughout the film and bring us to the ultimate scene in film history, where Leone's style shines to it's full extent. His incredible use of long shots to set the stage, close ups to catch the expressions, music to set the mood, montage to create the tension, expand it and finally when you are at the edge of you're seat, the scene goes off like lighting in the incredible climatic ending.
Leone is not just any director. He is one of the best, and THIS is his western!
Sergio Leone is the definition of artist and director. This movie is just the masterpiece of the art of cinema. The pictures, the dialogs, the actors, the location, the music, everything in that movie makes you feel that what you see is art. There is harmony, rhythm and especially there is realism in that film, something that's missing from the typical westerns. When i first saw that movie i felt like a car had run over me. Since then i still feel the same way when i see that film. Despite the large amount of films that i have seen since then this movie still remains the best film i have ever seen. I think Leone was a man with a very certain idea about cinema that personally finds me agreed. Of course that's just my opinion and i just want you to respect it.
this movie is by far the best western ever made. yes unforgiven is
great but it was made after and with the benifit of the latter. this
movie was made in 1966 that is 40 years ago. I have watched this movie
twenty times and maybe more. It has been a part of my life and I find
it to be a great why to kill a rainy afternoon. I see something new
almost every time I watch it. this movie changed the way gun movies
Sergio in his wisdom or luck got it right, as they say three is a charm. If you are a fan of horses check out the Arabian that Lee rides in on, best western horse ever except for maybe Beau in True Grit. many forget that the horses are important too. this movie and director should have won the best movie and best director for 1966
Civil War, gold is up for grabs, and three dirty cowboys all want it.
Seems like a regular Western. It's a good thing film-directing God
Sergio Leone and cowboy-extraordinaire Clint Eastwood paired up,
because in that genre, there isn't a better match. To this day, there
hasn't been a movie that comes close to the depth and craft that his
It's a beautifully woven-together piece of cinema that Sergio knows what to do with. He creates a feeling of both intensity and humor by portraying the three key characters with one trait only; The Good (Clint Eastwood), The Bad (Lee Van Cleef), and The Ugly (Eli Wallach). These characters follow their own instincts, whether it be good or bad, and let nothing stand in their way of recovering the gold. The only problem is, they have to work together to get it. One knows the place of the gold (a graveyard), and one knows which grave it's buried under. Just how long does it take until the cowboys let their pride and betrayal ruin their treasure hunt? Though the beautiful directing is immensely distinct and original, the movie is very plot-driven. The characters don't matter to us. We could have The Good play The Ugly and it would still be the same outcome. But from Sergio's vision, comes a truly magnificent submission into the psychology of the Civil War civilians and determined, gun-shooting varmints.
At first, we meet the characters by obviously seeing them do what they're intended to do. The Ugly robs a store, The Bad kills a few people, and The Good saves someone's life. After that, we see that The Ugly and The Good are actually working together to do what dirty cowboys do best; collect their money. Upon finding out about the treasure, all three characters become The Determined, and both work together and hang each other by the necks (literally) to find the gold.
From beginning to end, "The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly" is utterly entertaining and unique. It can be called both a Western and a War movie. As the plot develops and thickens, we see more of the setting than in all other Westerns combined. Everything is twice as big, and everything is twice as dirty. A definite classic, that defined cinema in more than one way, with its memorable score, to the never before seen directing, the movie stands as one of (if not the) best movies of all time.
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