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A Man Called Blade (1977) More at IMDbPro »Mannaja (original title)

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Release Date:
13 August 1977 (Italy) See more »
A bounty hunter arrives in a mining town and is hired to track down the missing daughter of the town's crippled mayor and learns she has been kidnapped by the mayor's corrupt right-hand-man and a band of outlaws he is secretly working for. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Atmospheric Twilight Spaghetti Western. See more (20 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)
Maurizio Merli ... Mannaja
John Steiner ... Valler
Sonja Jeannine ... Deborah McGowan (as Sonya Jeannine)
Donald O'Brien ... Burt Craven
Salvatore Puntillo ... Johnny Johnny - the impresario
Antonio Casale ... Dorman - bandits' head (as Nino Casale)
Enzo Fiermonte ... The government Envoy
Rik Battaglia ... Gerald Merton - Mannaja's father (as Rick Battaglia)
Aldo Rendine ... The Fat Passenger in the Stagecoach
Sergio Tardioli ... The Saloon Barman
Sofia Lombardo ... Mannaja's Mother (as Sophia Lombardo)
Philippe Leroy ... McGowan
Martine Brochard ... Angela
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Enzo Maggio
Nick Alexander ... Dorman - Bandits' Head (voice: English version) (uncredited)
Domenico Cianfriglia ... Valler's Man (uncredited)
Alberto Dell'Acqua ... Valler's Man (uncredited)
Ottaviano Dell'Acqua ... Rioting Miner (uncredited)
Bruno Di Luia ... Stagecoach Guard (uncredited)

Michael Forest ... Blade (voice: English version) (uncredited)
Nello Pazzafini ... Valler's Man (uncredited)
Riccardo Petrazzi ... Valler's Man (uncredited)
Claudio Ruffini ... Valler's Man with Whip (uncredited)
Franco Ukmar ... Valler's Man (uncredited)
Frank von Kuegelgen ... Valler's Man (voice: English version) (uncredited)
José Yepes ... Valler's Man (uncredited)

Directed by
Sergio Martino 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Sergio Martino 
Sauro Scavolini 

Produced by
Luciano Martino .... producer
Original Music by
Guido De Angelis 
Maurizio De Angelis 
Cinematography by
Federico Zanni 
Film Editing by
Eugenio Alabiso 
Production Design by
Giacomo Calò Carducci 
Costume Design by
Marisa Crimi 
Makeup Department
Mirella Ginnoto .... hair stylist
Dante Trani .... makeup artist
Production Management
Pietro Innocenzi .... production manager
Furio Rocchi .... production supervisor
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Massimo Manasse .... assistant director
Art Department
Adriano Tiberi .... property master
Sound Department
Raffaele De Luca .... sound
Bruno Moreal .... sound mixer
Stefano Piermarioli .... sound recordist
Special Effects by
Dino Galiano .... special effects (as Cataldo Galliano)
Riccardo Petrazzi .... stunt coordinator
Camera and Electrical Department
Alberto Anzellotti .... key grip
Roberto Belli .... gaffer
Sebastiano Celeste .... camera operator
Giorgio Garibaldi Schwarze .... still photographer (as Baldi Schwarze)
Mario Pastorini .... assistant camera
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Luisa Buratti .... wardrobe mistress
Editorial Department
Sante Discepoli .... assistant editor
Giuseppe Romano .... assistant editor
Other crew
Evi Farinelli .... production secretary
Mirella Malatesta .... publicity secretary
Luigi Padovani .... riding master
Riccardo Petrazzi .... weapons master
Luciano De Ambrosis .... voice dubbing: John Steiner (uncredited)
Vittoria Febbi .... voice dubbing: Martine Brochard (uncredited)
Sergio Fiorentini .... voice dubbing: Enzo Fiermonte (uncredited)
Michele Gammino .... voice dubbing: Antonio Casale (uncredited)
Pino Locchi .... voice dubbing: Maurizio Merli (uncredited)
Renato Mori .... voice dubbing: Donald O'Brien (uncredited)
Giorgio Piazza .... voice dubbing: Philippe Leroy (uncredited)
Serena Verdirosi .... voice dubbing: Sonja Jeannine (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Mannaja" - Italy (original title)
See more »
Brazil:101 min
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »

Did You Know?

Maurizio Merli was chosen to play Blade, because he looked like Franco Nero.See more »
Movie Connections:
References A Fistful of Dollars (1964)See more »
WolfSee more »


Who was the voice of Blade in the dubbed version?
What are the lyrics to the theme song?
What is Mannaja about?
See more »
Atmospheric Twilight Spaghetti Western., 19 December 2011
Author: JohnWelles from United Kingdom

"Mannaja: A Man Clalled Blade" (1977) is one of the last true Spaghetti Westerns, being made almost at the end of the ailing genres decline. It is directed by Sergio Martino and stars seventies Italian crime movie veteran Maurizio Merli as the eponymous (anti-)hero as well as John Steiner and Donald O'Brien.

The screenplay was written by the director and is about a bounty hunter, Mannaja/Blade (who is armed with a hatchet instead of a gun), arriving in the mining town of Suttonville attempting to claim the bounty on the outlaw Burt Craven (O'Brian). Here though, he runs into trouble with the unscrupulous Theo Waller (Steiner) and mine owner Edward M. McGowan (Philippe Leroy).

If the script is rather formulaic, the presentation is not, which despite borrowing a few ideas from some of Sergio Corbucci's Westerns, this is a mean and moody film. After a very atmospheric opening where Mannaja hunts down Craven, he enters a town which is a sea of mud and miners dying from the dust they breathe in from the silver mine while lorded over by the puritanical McGowan. This is hardly a light-hearted film; Mannaja is a man with vengeance in his heart and neither he nor his enemies have any qualms over killing to achieve their goal.

Martino's direction is the chief attraction here, as along with cinematographer Federico Zanni, he conjures, a cold, wet, muddy landscape for his characters to briefly live and then die in. Merli is good as Mannaja, although playing a silent, tough bounty hunter hardly seems to be stretching him as an actor. Steiner is excellent as the villain, clearly relishing his role. This music by Guido and Maurizio De Angelis is impressive, very different from anything Ennio Morricone did in the genre. Unfortunately the title song played over the beginning and then subsequently at various points throughout the film, is just plain awful, like a cut-price clone of Leonard Cohen singing while drunk. That is only a slight negative however in this superb Spaghetti Western from the twilight era of the genre.

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