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The Ugly Ones (1967)
"El precio de un hombre" (original title)

 -  Western  -  September 1968 (USA)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 282 users  
Reviews: 16 user | 4 critic

Escaped outlaw Jose Gomez returns to his home town pursued by bounty killer Luke Chilson. The towns people protect Gomez, unaware, at first, that he is now a changed and dangerous man.

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Writers:

(as Don Prindle) , (as Jose G. Maesso) , 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
José Gómez
Richard Wyler ...
Luke Chilson
...
Miguel
Halina Zalewska ...
Eden (as Ilya Karin)
Hugo Blanco
Luis Barboo
Manuel Zarzo ...
Marty Hefner
Frank Braña
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Chiro Bermejo
José Canalejas
Ricardo Canales
Saturno Cerra
Antonio Cintado
Gonzalo de Esquiroz ...
(as Gonzalo Esquiroz)
Enzo Fiermonte ...
Novak (as Glenn Foster)
Edit

Storyline

Escaped outlaw Jose Gomez returns to his home town pursued by bounty killer Luke Chilson. The towns people protect Gomez, unaware, at first, that he is now a changed and dangerous man. Written by Tom Seldon <elpuro@msn.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

For a bullet spent and a dollar earned he was the best in the business!

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

September 1968 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Ugly Ones  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

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User Reviews

 
Impressive & Professional
29 May 2009 | by (New York, USA) – See all my reviews

Eugenio Martin's THE BOUNTY KILLER is another of those really impressive & highly professionally made overlooked Italian spaghetti western classics. Regardless of genre this is a highly entertaining film, imaginatively staged & filmed with stylistic flourish by "Trinity" creator Enzo Barboni. Based on the western pulp novel of the same name by Marvin H. Albert and boasting a robust Stelvio Cipriani musical score, the film has an authority to it's execution that belies the low budget origins of the production.

All of this realized by a first rate cast: Thomas Milian steals the show as a suave killer who devolves into a chattering psychopath after he & his gang of grubby unwashed cut-throats take over his former home village (which due to budget restraints is populated by all of six people, but never mind). The performance is measured against Richard Wyler's grim, laconic bounty hunter, determined to bring in Milian for bounty dead or alive. Frequent Margheriti actress Halina Zalewska with her glittering blue eyes plays the woman who is both the key to Milian's wanton freedom and his eventual demise. Mario "Mr. Fun" Brega plays the beefy lummox town blacksmith who makes a mistake by helping to free Milian and very quickly comes to regret it, with colorful supporting bit parts for familiar faces like Frank Braña, Luis Barboo, José Canalejas, Enzo Fiermonte, and paunchy Ricardo Canales who is never seen without a plate of stew.

Thomas Milian's performance is the key to the movie's success, specifically contrasted with Wyler's far more subdued good guy. By making Milian's character more likable and romantic in nature the audience is almost sucker punched into rooting for him, until the evil fabric of his character becomes apparent. Some of his schtick gets a bit tiresome towards the end -- he spends a lot of time murmuring what seem to be significant lines just below the audio threshold level -- but it is the first of countless tour-de-force performances by Milian. He's always a fascinating actor with a "love it or hate it" style, and I like to divide his career into a Pre-Funny Hat and Post-Funny Hat eras. This might be his best Pre-Funny Hat acting, though it's hard to beat THE BIG GUNDOWN.

Another interesting aspect of the movie is Halina Zelewska's role which never degrades her into a sex object. Yes she is undeniably attractive and costumed in a manner that enhances her overlooked cleavage, but she is an equal with the boys in this one and it's refreshing to see a spaghetti western heroine who isn't just a cheap lay for the lead actor. Her role is complex and laden with a duality that causes her character conflict: Does she side with the suave bandit or the cold bounty killer? Her decisions are the most important moments of the film, a significance rarely seen among western damsels from either side of the Atlantic.

Why has this film been so overlooked? Not only will western fans who scoff at spaghetti westerns find it interesting, but non-fans of the western genre will doubtlessly be drawn to the plotting and characterizations. The gunplay and bravado are just gravy on top of a wonderful concoction.

8/10


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