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Apache Blood (1975)

R | | Western | 1 June 1975 (USA)
In the western desert a young brave avenges the deaths of his tribe in a massacre by the US Army.

Director:

(as Tom Quillen)

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Yellow Shirt
Dewitt Lee ...
Sam Glass
Troy Nabors ...
Cpl. Lem Hawkins
Diane Taylor ...
Yellow Shirt's Woman
Eva Kovacs ...
Martha Glass
Jason Clark ...
Army Dispatch Rider
Dave Robart ...
Soldier
William Chadwick ...
Soldier
Carl Mancini ...
Soldier
Earl Baldwin ...
Soldier
Wilford 'Whizzer' White ...
Indian
Carl Nelson ...
Indian
Jack Lee ...
Soldier at Fort
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Storyline

In the western desert a young brave avenges the deaths of his tribe in a massacre by the US Army.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 June 1975 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Man Called She  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Filmed in 1971 under the title "Sh'e ee Clit Soak", which translates as "A Man Called She", retained as the title song. See more »

Goofs

As Yellow Shirt chases the mountain men through the desert, he is shown running without his rifle. As he closes in on the mountain man, he has his rifle. See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Existentialist 70s Western As Craparoni With Cheese
13 June 2007 | by (New York, USA) – See all my reviews

This is perhaps the most existentialist of the existentialist Westerns made in the US during the 1970s paranoia years when filmmakers re-defined the Western into a movie that wasn't supposed to be enjoyed. With that in mind this is perhaps the perfect example of the idiomatic shift since it is not enjoyable in any conventional sense of the term and is so existential in nature that one starts to project themselves sitting in front of a different television watching a different movie. Heavy. Matinée icon Ray Danton was coaxed out of semi-retirement by something along the lines of a palimony lawsuit and convinced to appear in this movie for enough chump change to pay his lawyer, and from the bravely solemn look on his face during the film's runtime (he has no dialog, period) one can presume that he lost the case. In any event he is cast as "Yellow Shirt", a fictional Native American renegade Apache who went on a murder spree to avenge the deaths of the Native tribe slaughtered at the conclusion of SOLDIER BLUE, which the writers of this movie obviously saw during it's 1975 re-release.

So moved were they by that film's carnage that they dreamed up the idea of having the Apaches avenge their mistreatment at the hands of Yankee cavalry troops. Either that or they were just ripping off any one of the myriad of other movies that were made by likewise minded young semi-independent filmmakers who were also moved by SOLDIER BLUE's concluding 20 minutes -- see CRY BLOOD APACHE, APACHE MASSACRE, and Bruno Mattei's SCALPS for more information. And better film-making, for that matter. There are times when extreme low budget and lack of talent in front of and behind the camera can excuse what turns out to be an inept project, but this isn't one of them. It was ineptly made by people lacking even the smallest degree of talent who gave their all & came up empty, and the majority of those involved were correctly never allowed to work in the industry ever again.

The movie appears to have been filmed over a period of roughly nine days by a group of people drawn together by a shared, common artistic urge to make a really crummy movie that would pack a nihilistic message into it's last 3 minutes, the more nihilistic and existentialist the better, and as such the film concludes with a sequence who's ambiguity is only outdone by the artlessness with which it was executed. The most artful thing in the film is a charcoal drawing of Ray Danton in his Injun brave makeup that is panned by a camera adjustment to a rendering of a fallen Apache by his tepee, which is perhaps an effort to compensate for the Apache Massacre which triggered this series of events only being mentioned as a voice-over narration.

This is heavy stuff, as I mentioned, and Danton is joined on his spree by a couple of other schnooks the director knew, who's Injun brave costumes consist of over-sized chamois shirts, some war paint & a headband, and their underwear. The cavalry soldiers (two of him were the film's writers) wear their own department store Levis with what appear to be identical bowling league shirts, and the weapons shown all look suspiciously like cap guns from the local K-Mart. As such none of the killings shown save one involve anyone being shot: The most imaginative is an homage to DEATH RIDES A HORSE where one of the evil cavalry hicks is buried up to his neck in the dirt whilst the Injunts play polo with his head.

The movie is unremittingly grim, mean spirited, cheap, and surprisingly uneventful even after the supporting cast has been whittled away and the movie devolves into an homage to Cornel Wilde's THE NAKED PREY as the surviving cavalry guide and Yellow Shirt engage in a mano a mano footrace to reach a stockaded compound that reminds me of a KOA Campgrounds main office. Between images of the two flaking out we are treated to hallucinations of their women waiting anxiously back at home, and the movie climaxes in a twist ending that is the very epitome of the word "underwhelming."

And yet, while being awful in the truest sense of the word, this utterly forgettable little movie actually manages to be more sincere than it's source material, SOLDIER BLUE, in that it never bothers to be anything more than an ultra cheap, grimy, thick-skulled exploitation film masquerading as an existentialist paranoid years Western. There is no star power at work, no politics, no dogma and no lessons on survival from Candice Bergen. Just a cheap, pathetic, filthy little movie that has very rightfully been relegated to obscurity on appropriately dingy, tattered fullframe home video prints that have very correctly been allowed to fall out of print. But you can find it on a 50 movie box set called -- apparently just for the hell of it -- "Gunslinger Classics" with 49 other haggard, unkempt and uncared for home video prints of movies that will all undoubtedly be better. It may not be much compensation but in this case it will have to do.

3/10


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