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A Bullet for the General (1967)

Quién sabe? (original title)
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A band of Mexican gun-runners employed by a revolutionary general accept an American into their gang, unaware of his intentions.

Director:

Damiano Damiani

Writers:

Salvatore Laurani (story and screenplay), Franco Solinas (adaptation)
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Mann is a gunman informed by a childhood friend that his father was murdered years earlier by his mother and her lover. To make matters worse, Mann's sister, who is in love with his friend,... See full summary »

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Stars: Leonard Mann, Luciana Paluzzi, Pietro Martellanza
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Gian Maria Volontè ... El Chuncho (as Gian Maria Volonté)
Klaus Kinski ... El Santo
Martine Beswick ... Adelita
Lou Castel ... Bill 'Niño' Tate
Jaime Fernández Jaime Fernández ... General Elías (as Jaime Fernandez)
Andrea Checchi ... Don Felipe
Spartaco Conversi Spartaco Conversi ... Eufemio
Joaquín Parra Joaquín Parra ... Picaro (as Joaquin Parra)
Aldo Sambrell ... Lt. Alvaro Ferreira
José Manuel Martín José Manuel Martín ... Raimundo (as José Manuel Martin)
Santiago Santos Santiago Santos ... Guapo
Valentino Macchi Valentino Macchi ... Train Engineer
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Storyline

In the rough years of the revolution in Mexico, the hardened bandit chief, El Chucho, is in need of arms, ammunition, and a much-sought-after machine gun to support the leader of the revolution, the rebel General, Elías. With this in mind, Chucho attacks a government supply train and gets an unforeseen assistance from Bill Tate--the American gringo in the impeccable suit--with whom will soon become friends. Now, Bill is truly indispensable to the gang, however, could he be hiding his true objective behind a boyish and calm face? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Nothing can stop the Bandit except the Gringo... Nothing can stop the Gringo except the General... Nothing can stop the General except a bullet! See more »

Genres:

Action | Western

Certificate:

M | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Italy

Language:

Italian | Spanish | English

Release Date:

September 1968 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Bullet for the General See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

M. C. M. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(International Cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Damiano Damiani: A (possibly American) journalist who shakes hands with General Elias shortly after Chuncho and Tate's arrival. He is present in the Italian and "International" versions, but is cut from AVCO Embassy's American version. See more »

Quotes

El Chuncho: [pointing to something on Don Felipe's automobile] What's this thing?
Don Felipe: It's a gear shift.
El Chuncho: What's it for?
Don Felipe: ...For shifting gears.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Fassbinder in Hollywood (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Ya Me Voy
(uncredited)
Written by Luis Bacalov
Performed by Ramon Mereles
Courtesy of EMI General Music srl
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Well regarded spaghetti western lives up to its reputation
12 November 2005 | by dbborroughsSee all my reviews

In revolutionary Mexico American John Tate hooks up with a band of outlaws lead by Chuncho. They are "collecting" guns for the revolution. Tate, called Nino by his new friends, tags along as they get guns, free the poor and attempt to get paid for their efforts.

Thats wildly simplified and doesn't do the complexity of this film justice. What is going on in the film is often not apparent until you get to the very end of the movie. No one is who they seem to be and everyone has some sort of other motive for what they are doing. Its a complex film that you have to stay with since you can never be certain what is going on.

For a long stretch of the film I wasn't certain what I thought of it. As I said, this is a story that is ever changing and evolving as it goes, and which you can't say whether you like or not until you get to the very end. It seems like an enjoyable mean but slightly confused western for most of its running time. Our nominal hero, Nino, rapidly evolves into something else. He is always up to something and rarely is it any good. He's hard to root for, or even to like. You instead you have to root for Chuncho, which is a bit odd at first since he's a "bandit" and the "bad guy". By the end you're rooting for Chuncho, while you're still not sure about Nino. In the end though it all comes together, and it reveals itself to be a quite special movie.

This is a movie to see if you like westerns, or even good movies for that matter. Its a film that engages you and moves you and your emotions. Its nice that an entertaining film such as this can also have other things on its mind yet not get lost on those other things or lose the enjoyment factor (there's a good deal of political satire woven into the story).

Definitely recommended.


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