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A wagon load of convicts on their way to prison is being escorted through the mountains by a cavalry troop. They are attacked by a bandit gang, and only a sergeant, his beautiful young daughter and an assortment of seven sadistic, murderous prisoners survive, and they are left without horses or a wagon. The sergeant must find a way to get his prisoners to their destination while protecting his daughter, watching out for the still pursuing bandits and trying to determine which one of the prisoners was the man who raped and murdered his wife. Written by
Bleak, mean spirited and unpleasant , this film is quite good if you divorce yourself from the reputation
Billed as the goriest or most violent western ever made, Cut Throats Nine is certainly over hyped. I doubt that it is either the goriest or the most violent. I do think its one of the bleakest westerns I've ever seen and leaves you feeling rather depressed and uncertain at the end (which I think is the reason many people dislike it)
The plot is simple. A band of really bad military prisoners are being transported to a new location. The wagon they are riding in is ambushed by people looking for gold, when they don't find any they destroy the wagon and leave the prisoners and their one surviving keeper (and his daughter) alone in wilderness with no way to get anywhere but walk.
No one and nothing is as it seems. In a weird way there are no good guys, only bad people trying to survive and get out of a really bad situation. Your expectations of who is who and what is what shifts around during its running time, so rarely are you on solid ground about what is happening and who you can root for. Its a kick in the pants for anyone looking for a typical "heroic" western, spaghetti or otherwise.
I don't think the film is perfect. It meanders a bit too much and on some level I think it thinks its more important than it is, but there is no denying that the film packs a wallop in the unremittingly ugly department.
If you want to see a dog eat dog western with no good guys see this film. If you want a film with heroes or anti heroes stay away.
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