After a stagecoach is robbed and the passengers murdered, a long and tangled series of surprise attacks a murderous double-crosses leaves the coach's strongbox in the hands of the killer ... See full summary »
Master gunslinger Sabata arrives in Hobsonville, a town completely owned by McIntock, a robber baron who is taxing the inhabitants for the cost of future improvements to the town. Or that's... See full summary »
Lee Van Cleef,
Several pillars of society have robbed an Army safe containing $100,000 so they can buy the land upon which the coming railroad will be built. But they haven't reckoned on the presence of ... See full summary »
Lee Van Cleef,
When Sabata invades Colonel Skimmel's quarters, he sees the reflection of a person hiding behind the door. The person in the reflection is not Hertz. See more »
[Sabata catches an Austrian agent in a snare]
Hang around, I'll be back.
I'll get you when I get down!
[Sabata shoots the rope in two with a small pistol. The agent falls head first onto an accordion, and the instrument produces a sour note]
[looks back impassively]
You played that *rotten!
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Firstly, this is *not* a sequel to 1970's "Sabata" ("Ehi amico... c'è Sabata, hai chiuso!") although it can be considered a follow up of sorts. Lee Van Cleef did not reprise the role until 1971's "Return of Sabata". "Adiós Sabata" was originally about a character called Indio Black and completely unrelated to the previous Sabata story - Indio, I believe, was meant to be nothing more than a bandit. The name was changed to cash in on the success of "Sabata" - though this film could be considered a true Sabata entry as a couple of stars return (Pedro Sanchez, Gianni Rizzo) and the screenwriters and director are the same. Gianfranco Parolini (Frank Kramer) perhaps out does the previous film here, keeping everything tighter - "Sabata" was a little too jokey (although still excellent and one of the truly great Italian westerns) whereas this is blatantly tongue in cheek. I feel the music is better in this film, never intrusive and always fitting: a triumph for Bruno Nicolai, despite the fact that it is incredibly reminiscent of Morricone.
As Sabata, Brynner is a kind of anti-hero counterpart to Chris from "The Magnificent Seven"; he even dresses out all in black here too. Gérard Herter is great as the Austrian Colonel Skimmel at the time of Emperor Maximillian's Mexico - a kind of borderline camp, Bond villain type, complete with monacle and perfectly trimmed moustache. Oh, and yes, he is a dead shot with a rifle. In "Sabata", Franco Ressel's Stengel had his shootout's behind man shaped shields (to live at the peak of danger or some such nonsense) as his playtoy; Herter's Skimmel has an even better one - a drawer beneath a model ship that when opened fires each cannon on the model directly into whoever opens the drawer. Like "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly" (which this film contains some surprisingly subtle references to) the plot centres around a shipment of gold: Sabata, Escudo (Sanchez) and Ballantine (Dean Reed) want the wagon load of gold, but it is also coveted by Maximillian's rebels. The scenes with the gold and the gold dust being poured out/spilled is nicely complimented by Nicolai's incidental music which really does bring out the joy of the characters.
I personally think it's a shame that Brynner and the others weren't brought back for another Sabata film because he plays the role much straighter than Van Cleef did and really does come across as a tough guy here, who doesn't need to rely on his gun. "Adiós Sabata" is a classic in it's own right and doesn't need to be viewed with the other Sabata entries. It's only downside is that after surpassing the superb original, it left most people disappointed with the later "Return of Sabata".
Are these subtle hints to Leone's 1966 masterpiece? Sanchez: "Me, I'd make a hiding place no-one would find - stick it in the ground, maybe in a cemetery..." Reed (the last line): "Hey fellas - are you gonna help me pick up the gold or not, you sons of...!" (music takes over)
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