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The flick has undeniable tendencies to symbolic events that overkill the nimble developing of the story . The film is slowly paced and spite of setting on exteriors , it feels itself some claustrophobic . The plot is plain and simple with a few roles , a strange duo faces off neighboring bandits and a racist , brutal bounty hunter . Director copes well this thrilling Western helped by the Spanish desert from Almeria where in the 60s and 70 were shot lots of Pasta/Chorizo Westerns . The picture draws magnificent acting from Richard Roundtree as the black , Union Army deserter and Roy Thinnes as the Indian outcast , both of whom encounter common ground in oppression eventually incarnated by Nigel Davenport as a cruel bounty hunter . Furthermore , brief appearances from Spanish actors as Aldo Sambrell and Rafael Albaicín , both of them usual to Spaghetti/Paella Westerns . This one results to be a British Western film along with ¨Hunting party¨ by Don Medford , ¨Catlow¨ by Sam Wanamaker , ¨Eagles's wing¨ by Anthony Harvey , ¨Shalako¨ by Edward Dymitryck , most of them starred by great players and shot in Almeria .
The motion picture was well directed by Don Chaffey , though results to be a little bit boring . Don began directing in 1951 , often working on films aimed at children , as he directed various kiddies films as ¨Magic of Lassie¨ , ¨Greyfriars Bobby¨, ¨The horse without head¨, ¨3 lives of Thomasina¨ , ¨Pete's dragon¨ , ¨Ride a wild Pony¨. He branched out into television in the mid-'50s, turning out many of the best episodes of such classic series as ¨Danger Man¨ (1960), ¨The prisoner¨ (1967) and ¨The avengers¨ (1961). Although he worked in many film genres , such as Romance/drama : ¨The gift of love¨ , ¨Four wishes¨, Prehistorical : ¨Creatures of the world forgot¨ , ¨One million years B.C.¨ , Thriller : ¨Casino¨, Comedy : ¨Dentist in chair¨ , ¨A matter of Who¨, his best work is generally acknowledged to be the crackerjack fantasy ¨Jasón and the Argonauts¨ (1963). On the other hand, he was also responsible for the lugubrious, box-office disaster ¨The viking queen¨ (1967), one of the few productions from Hammer Films that lost money. In the late 1970s Chaffey traveled to the US and worked primarily there, often in made-for-TV movies .
However, I highly recommend this movie.
Charley-One-Eye (1973) is one of those odd films that come across the TV late at night. I really enjoyed it, since it was a new take on the Western. It has a black man, of recent from the Union Army, now a deserter, and his injured American Indian hostage. I didn't recognize Roy Thinnes as the Indian and Richard Roundtree as the black man. Richard Roundtree shot some Union officer and seems to be on the run. A mean-spirited Bounty Hunter is on his trail, played by Nigel Davenport (Sands of the Kalahari (1965), A Man for All Seasons (1966)).
There's a lot of oddness in the interaction between the black man and his injured American Indian hostage, who are fighting for survival in the desert. It was filmed in Almería Spain, the locale for so many Spaghetti Westerns in the 1960's.
It is interesting to note how the relationship develops when they are by themselves are threatened by an outsider group. The ending was very melancholy. There is also a similar film, Eagle's Wing (1979) , where Sam Waterston plays an American Indian. Grayeagle (1977) also has Alex Cord as an American Indian.
Charley-One-Eye, like Eagle's Wing (1979), were both British productions.
Charley-One-Eye is a chicken that the American Indian has taken a fancy to and perhaps is symbolic of how American Indians were treated.