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The Ruthless Four (1968)
"Ognuno per sé" (original title)

M  -  Western  -  November 1969 (USA)
6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 331 users  
Reviews: 13 user | 6 critic

This superior Spaghetti western scrutinizes the greed and paranoia that afflict four men as they struggle among themselves to unearth a fortune in gold from a remote Southwestern mine ...

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Sam Cooper
...
Mason
...
Brent il Biondo
George Hilton ...
Manolo Sanchez
Sarah Ross ...
Anna
Federico Boido ...
Alfred Brady (as Rick Boyd)
Sergio Doria ...
Hal Brady
Giovanni Ivan Scratuglia ...
Telegraphist (as Ivan Scratuglia)
Giorgio Gruden ...
Drugstore owner
Hardy Reichelt
Teodoro Corrà ...
U.S. Marshall (as Doro Corra)
Edit

Storyline

This superior Spaghetti western scrutinizes the greed and paranoia that afflict four men as they struggle among themselves to unearth a fortune in gold from a remote Southwestern mine without falling prey to each other's bullets.

Add Full Plot | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In the Tradition of "Treasure of Sierra Madre" See more »

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

M | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

November 1969 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Ruthless Four  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Italian censorship visa # 50800 delivered on 6-2-1968. See more »

Quotes

Mason: Another old partner, huh Cooper?
Sam Cooper: It was him or me.
Mason: Dead man tell no tales.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Reservoir Dogs (1992) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A worthy Treasure of the Sierra Madre descendant - gritty and violent
4 November 2008 | by (Greece) – See all my reviews

Weather-tattered but hearty and belligerent gold-digger Sam Cooper hits the motherlode after twenty tired years of pickaxing the hills only to find his gold-digging partner gunning for his ass. Having taken care of his treacherous partner by means of exploding his own gold-mine, he returns to town through the desert, parched and terrible-looking, with plans of getting back to the goldmine and mining the gold with a partner he can trust, a hard enough prospect in a town full of greedy, backstabbing sons of bitches. For that purpose he sends word for a child he once took care of back in Denver, who arrives promptly in the slick and suave shape of George Hilton. Along the way and before they have even left town, two become four (the titular ruthless), and none has any more trust for the other three than he has for his own self getting out of this alive.

Thus begins a tale of greed and betrayal not unlike John Huston's gold-digging landmark TREASURE OF THE SIERRA MADRE, the impeccable characterization somewhat toned down in favor of gunfighting. Director George Holloway doesn't miss the occasional false note, such as the terribly ill-conceived oriental 'epic music' that accompanies the gaunt and exhausted quartette as they travel back from the goldmine through the deathly desert, music that would have been at home in a sword and sandal epic or a religious movie but not a gritty western; these guys aren't Moses crossing the Red Sea. For the most part however he retains a constant level of intensity and intrigue, the four protagonists characterized in broad strokes yet enough for them to have something to play on.

Giallo casanova George Hilton is the weak link in the cast, his overacting bound to elicit a smile or two, but Klaus Kinski fans will be pleased to know the eccentric German and his half-mad stare have plenty of screen time. Unlike the myriad walk-through cameos he's done in other spaghetti westerns, he's one of the main guys here – always a sneaky villain of course, here as the Blonde, a cut-throat, milk-drinking thug dressing like a reverend. The German print I saw was called The Gold of Sam Cooper and was not terribly pristine but overall this one's a must-see for spaghetti western fans.


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