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Buffalo Bill (1965)

Buffalo Bill, l'eroe del far west (original title)
Renegade Indians, led by Yellow Hand, are being sold guns by Donaldson. Buffalo Bill is sent to stop the arms trading and avert an Indian war

Director:

Mario Costa (as J.W. Fordson)

Writers:

Nino Stresa (story), Nino Stresa (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Gordon Scott ... Buffalo Bill
Ingeborg Schöner ... Mary Peterson (as Ingeborg Schoener)
Catherine Ribeiro Catherine Ribeiro ... Moonbeam
Jan Hendriks Jan Hendriks ... Monroe
Roldano Lupi Roldano Lupi ... Colonel Peterson
Mirko Ellis Mirko Ellis ... Yellow Hand
Hans von Borsody ... Captain Hunter
Andrea Scotti Andrea Scotti ... Poker Player (as Andrew Scott)
Piero Lulli Piero Lulli ... Red (as Peter Lull)
Ugo Sasso Ugo Sasso ... Snack (as Hugo Arden)
Mario Brega ... Big Sam Donaldson (as Richard Stuyvesant)
Feodor Chaliapin Jr. ... Chief White Fox (as Fiodor Chaliapin)
Jacques Herlin ... Piano Player
Franco Fantasia Franco Fantasia ... George, Poker player (as Frank Farrell)
Rinaldo Zamperla Rinaldo Zamperla ... Chiricahua (as Ronald Parish)
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Storyline

Renegade Indians, led by Yellow Hand, are being sold guns by Donaldson. Buffalo Bill is sent to stop the arms trading and avert an Indian war Written by Tom Seldon <elpuro@msn.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Italy | France | West Germany

Language:

Italian

Release Date:

17 February 1965 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Buffalo Bill See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (as Westrex Fono Roma)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Yellow Hand: [to Buffalo Bill] I'll have you tortured until you die.
See more »

Connections

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

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User Reviews

 
Maciste Out West
31 March 2009 | by SquonkamaticSee all my reviews

Handsome Euro western genre film here, kind of straddling two genres at once. Gordon Scott is well cast & appropriately larger than life as the Indian fighter turned US Army scout Buffalo Bill Cody, trading in his Samson tunic for a buckskin jacket + goatee. Not sure if the Italian, French & Spanish filmmakers who made this followed much of Buffalo Bill's actual history for their plot, but then again that isn't really the point of the film.

Which was to find a wholesome heroic good guy for Gordon Scott to play in an early spaghetti western. And he plays Cody pretty much as he played the Son of Hercules: Strapping, brawny, beefy, but surprisingly intelligent, insightful, and considerate of even the guy whom he beats the stuffing out of in a bar room brawl. He is almost insufferably good, working for the native Indians to live side by side with his fellow Palefaces and keep the two sides from massacring each other.

Once you get down to it the basic premise of the film has been lifted more from the Winnetou/Old Shatterhand films from Germany & Yugoslavia which precipitated the Italian/Spanish spaghetti western boom. Gordon Scott's appearance and mannerism is almost a dead ripoff of Lex Barker's Shatterhand, though there's no Winnetou analog. Instead the film seems to want to experiment with putting this Shatterhand surrogate into some of the trappings of what would become the spaghetti western approach.

Which is one of the things that makes the film unique -- a genuine Hero, rather than an ambiguous Anti-Hero, and Scott was well prepared for the undertaking. Sure, it's silly and potentially offensive to see Spanish supporting actors dressed up like Injun braves and dubbed by voice actors with mid-Atlantic quasi British accents. What the film may lack in terms of authenticity it makes up for with wide-eyed innocence, and they even have Scott ride off waving to the crowd in the end to the applause & cheers of those he had saved, just like in his Maciste films. Not something you'd see Clint Eastwood do, that's for sure.

The film was most likely made in 1964 as the Italian Peplum sword & sandal era was coming to an end, and from the looks of it the producing studio apparently figured that by bringing along one of their most popular Peplum matinée stars they'd be able to translate the medium into a western and be guaranteed a hit. The production standards of the film are respectfully robust and there's quite a large supporting cast; they spent some money on this one, and while voters on the IMDb may not have thought much of the results it's a shame that they didn't get a little film series out of the effort.

One of the problems was Gordon Scott, who made one more Euro western for Albert Band, the tragic Spanish romantic range drama THE TRAMPLERS which isn't nearly half as much fun as this one. Rumor has it that while preparing to make a third western Scott's nose was broken by co-star Mario Brega (who plays a Bud Spencer-ish lummox rogue in this one) and found the disfigurement ruinous to his photogenic looks. Scott made two more action/adventure films of the spy genre ilk and abruptly retired from the industry in late 1965, the year this film was released.

The spaghetti genre itself had also changed by the time this film was circulating, with the more stylish approaches of DJANGO and Sergio Leone's "Dollar" films making the more traditionalist approach seen here look a bit old fashioned by comparison. And that's exactly why I adore it: Here's a spaghetti western from the infancy of the genre when they were still making movies about good guys & bad guys, Injuns and the cavalry, and a do-gooder hero designed to be rooted for like he was Audie Murphy or something. The change of pace is quite refreshing.

7/10: Something Weird Video apparently has a widescreen English version on VHS & DVD-R, which you can order directly from their website. Take a look.


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