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A Reason to Live, a Reason to Die (1972)
"Una ragione per vivere e una per morire" (original title)

 -  Western  -  6 August 1973 (Spain)
6.2
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 993 users  
Reviews: 16 user | 4 critic

Branded a coward for surrendering his New Mexico fort to the Confederates without firing a shot, a Union colonel attempts to redeem himself by leading a band of condemned prisoners on a suicide mission to recapture it.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay), 3 more credits »
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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Colonello Pembroke
...
Maggiore Ward
...
Eli Sampson
Georges Géret ...
Sergente Spike
Reinhard Kolldehoff ...
Sergente Brent (as Rene Kolldehoff)
Guy Mairesse ...
Donald MacIvers
José Suárez ...
maggiore Charles Ballard (as Jose Suarez)
Ugo Fangareggi ...
Fred
Benito Stefanelli ...
Samuel Pickett un ex condannato
Adolfo Lastretti ...
Will Fernandez / Will Culder (as Guy Ranson)
Fabrizio Moresco ...
Ward's Assistant
Francisco Sanz ...
Farmer (as Paco Sanz)
Carla Mancini
Joe Pollini ...
Jeremy
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Andrew Dean
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Storyline

A dishonoured army officer saves the lives of some hardened criminals on condition that they help him regain his honour. Will they live up to his expectations? Written by Hector Farrugia <hector.farrugia@magnet.mt>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

recapture | mission | fort | officer | army | See All (42) »

Taglines:

A handful of condemned men on an impossible mission, against hopeless odds...

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

| | |

Language:

Release Date:

6 August 1973 (Spain)  »

Also Known As:

A Reason to Live, a Reason to Die  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(1973) (theatrical) | (Northern Countries PAL DVD) | (original uncut)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Goofs

The film is set in 1862 but features Gatling guns that, presumably, formed part of the fort's arsenal when it was in Union hands.The gun was designed by Dr Richard J Gatling in 1861 and patented on November 4, 1862. Though two examples were employed near Petersburg and eight fitted on gunboats, it was not accepted by the American Army until 1866. So it's most improbable that it would have been available in a remote theatre of the Civil War. See more »

Connections

Edited into Spaghetti Western Trailer Show (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Reason to Live, A Reason to Watch.
1 December 2010 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

"A Reason to Live, A Reason to Die" (1972) is a exciting, Civil War-set Spaghetti Western, directed by Sergio Leone's protégé Tonino Valerii and stars James Coburn, Telly Savalas and Bud Spencer.

The script by Rafael Azcona, Ernesto Gastaldi, Jay Lynn and Tonino Valerii is hardly original, amounting to nothing but a "Dirty Dozen" rehash, but it is adequate: during the American Civil War, the disgraced Colonel Pembroke (James Coburn) tries to retake a heavily defended fort that was taken by the Confederates from him without a shot fired, a mystery that helps drive his character, by using twelve recruits who he has saved from death sentences.

Despite the lack of originality in the screenplay department, the spirited direction makes the story rattle along at a breathless pace to the expertly staged, wholesale carnage at the end. Throughout, the the three leads fare remarkably well and are the only ones who are given any sort of more than superficial examination of their past. The music by Riz Ortolani, all powerful horns, is masterly, compensating for uninteresting photography.

The fast pace and direction help raise this Spaghetti Western into a higher plane, turning it into a very, very enjoyable film.


3 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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