History Professor Brad Fletcher heads west for his health, but falls in with Soloman Bennett's outlaw gang. Fascinated by their way of life, Fletcher finally takes over the gang, leading with a new 'efficient' ruthlessness.Written by
Tom Seldon <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sergio Sollima was inspired to write and direct a film that dealt with the exchange of moral values between two characters based on his experiences in fighting with the anti-fascist resistance in World War II. He noted that during that time, he witnessed acts of courage committed by young children with minimal life experience, and acts of cowardice committed by once-brave men. Sollima later expressed that this film was a personal favorite of the films he made. See more »
When Siringo is preparing to give a letter about an upcoming bank robbery to a sheriff, the "letter" shown in an insert shot is clearly a small card with the words "TO THE MARSHAL" written on it rather than an actual letter. See more »
Professor Brad Fletcher:
I've an announcement to make, and I find it... very painful. I'm unable to... continue this history course. But as you perhaps know, it's not a matter of my own volition. However, the study of history can be suspended... and resumed at any point. Because, though all men must die in time, other men will make history live. And each man can choose his own part in history. We've been forced to choose: when the war between the States declared that we were either Union loyalists or ...
[...] See more »
Carlo Simi is given a "sets and costumes" credit on Italian prints, while English prints credit him as the "art director". See more »
When 'Face to Face' was brought before the BBFC by Butcher's Film Service, it was cut from 112 minutes to 93 minutes to receive an 'A' rating. The 93-minute version of the English dub (featuring the voices of Tomas Milian and William Berger reprising their on-screen roles) was for some time the most widely available, having been released on Explosive Media's (out of print) 2-disc DVD release and Kino Lorber's Blu-ray, while the uncut English version was later released by Explosive Media on a single-disc DVD and in the first print run (of 1000 copies) of their Blu-ray release, which also contains the shorter English version.
The scenes removed from the 93-minute English version were:
The scene where Fletcher and Bennet spending a stormy night in one of Bennet's hideouts. Fletcher removes some floorboards to find medicine for Bennet's gunshot wounds, and Bennet, with Fletcher's help, removes a bullet from his body with a knife (the English audio for the second half of this scene was included in Explosive Media's original 2-disc release).
Fletcher learns to shoot at a tree with Bennet's revolver. However, he hesitates when ordered to shoot a rabbit. Both men then spy on Charley Siringo - Beau wants to kill him, but Fletcher suggests creating a diversion.
Bennet telling Reagen, a member of Sam Taylor's gang, that he shot him for "business" reasons, and walking away from his body when he dies (the English audio for this scene was included in Explosive Media's original 2-disc release).
Belle de Winton's discussion about her deceased Confederate lover with Fletcher, and Bennet/Fletcher's reactions - Bennet implies that he and Belle are having (or have had) an affair, which Fletcher politely respects.
Siringo's arrival at the de Winton estate, where he (aided by Vance and Aaron) kills a sheriff sent to capture Bennet. (The edited English version picks up from when, after Siringo kills the sheriff, Bennet discusses his level of trust for him.)
Fletcher meeting Rusty Rogers at Puerto del Fuego, and expressing admiration for him. Maximilian then tells Fletcher that Puerto del Fuego is full of "ghosts of the past", but Fletcher feels that he has never seen anyone look more "happy, alive and free" (the English audio for the second half of this scene appears in Explosive Media's 2-disc release).
Fletcher and Beau's mock duel, and Fletcher's explanations of the roles the other outlaws (except for himself, Maria and Bennet) will play in the Williow Creek bank robbery (in the edited English version, Jason's line "We go to Willow Creek, and knock off the bank" is used to create a transition shot to Bennet in the Mexican disguise he wears for the robbery).
Bennet being pestered by Paco, the Mexican peasant, followed by Mrs. Watson's (Mrs. Lee in the English version) argument with Willow Creek's sheriff about Siringo's letter regarding the robbery, just before Fletcher and Maria enter town. (In the uncut version, she throws away Siringo's letter in anger over the sheriff's lack of cooperation. In the edited English version, she throws the letter away after apparently using it as a tissue.)
A brief close-up of Fletcher walking towards the bag of stolen money during the bank robbery shoot-out.
A discussion between a group of lawmen about Fletcher's rise to power among Bennet's Raiders and Siringo's hunting for Aaron Chase.
An extra shot of Fletcher's men watching a goon punch Wallace (on Explosive Media's 2-disc release, the groan Wallace makes is unique; on the Blu-ray and single-disc DVD, the groan is a repeat of one Wallace makes earlier in the scene).
Italian/Spanish co-production by Sergio Solllima with noisy action , violence and crossfire
Spaghetti with Chorizo Western co-produced by Italy (Alberto Grimaldi , P.E.A Productions , which financed ¨¨The Dollars trilogy) and Spain (Arturo Gonzalez who co-produced ¨For a few dollars more) . This is the original second installment from Cuchillo trilogy and again an awesome Tomas Milian accompanied by an extraordinary Gian Maria Volonte . Very good S.W. about a relentless and exciting confrontation set against spectacular scenery of Almeria . History teacher named Brad Fletcher (Gian Maria Volonte) heads Texas for his health, but falls in with Soloman Bennett's (Tomas Milian) bandit group . Fascinated by their way of life , Fletcher finally takes over the band , leading a sad event and cruel happenings . Turned into a ruthless outlaw Fletcher makes rush deeds , showing that not always a good action produces good results . Solomon 'Beauregard' Bennet is a roguish thief and being pursued by Charlie Siringo (William Berger) . Charlie chases the band called ¨Manada Salvaje¨ ; as the solitary , self-reliant Siringo tracks down Solomon . It will be a long and dangerous pursuit with continuous escapes and double-crosses . The relentless chase is set against strong environment, risked mountains and hazardous trails .
This is the second part from Sergio Sollima trilogy , starred by Tomas Milian as the roguish ¨Cuchillo¨ and formed by ¨La Resa Dei Conti¨, or ¨The big Gundown¨ or ¨ The hawk and the prey¨ with Lee Van Cleef and ¨Run Cuchillo run ¨ with Donald O'Brien and this one , all of them belong among the best Spaghetti . It deals with Solomon , splendidly performed by Tomas Milian , he is fine as the hero/villain of the story . Tomas Milian is very nice , he ravages the screen, he jumps, bounds and leaps, hit and run , besides receives violent punches, kicks and wounds . His performance is astonishing , above average to level of these films . The story is wrapped in an aura of sadness , a tragic event on the metamorphosis of Fletcher , a good man turned into a crazed psychopath , being magnificently interpreted by Gian Maria Volonte . Worthwhile watching for a demonstration of the strange relationship between Tomas Milian and Gian Maria Volonte with some looks that say it all . William Berger is the tough but upright law-man and although he doesn't reaches the level of Milian , is also quite restrained . Charlie Siringo was an actual personage who really existed and did what the character in the film does , as he worked as an agent for Pinkerton , being well played by William Berger . This Western is superior than subsequent entry because it packs stirring adventures , shootouts, riding pursuits , treason and is pretty amusing . It's an exciting SW with breathtaking showdown between the protagonists Tomas Milian , Gian Maria Volonte , William Berger and the hoodlums enemies as Rick Boyd , Goffredo Unger , Ivan Scratuglia , Alfonso Rojas , Aldo Sambrell , among others . Aldo Sambrell plays a cruelly baddie role as a traitor killer is terrific , subsequently the would play similar role in other Spaghettis . Furthermore, there appears usual secondaries of Italian/Spanish Western as Italian actors as the femme fatal Jolanda Modio as Maria , Gianni Rizzo as Williams , Rick Boyd as nasty Sheriff , Nello Pazzafini ; as well as Spanish players : Angel Del Pozo as Maximiliam , Jose Torres as Aaron , Antonio Casas , Lorenzo Robledo , Francisco Sanz , Alfonso Rojas and of course Frank Braña in his ordinary role as a bandit . The film blends violence, blood, tension, high body-count and it's fast moving and quite entertaining . There is plenty of action in the movie , guaranteeing shootouts or stunts every few minutes . There are many fine technicians and nice assistant direction and excellent production design by Carlo Simi , Sergio Leone's usual , he creates a magnificent scenario with barren outdoors, dirty landscapes under a glimmer sun and a fine set on the final scenes . Being spectacularly filmed on location in Almería, Andalucía, Spain ,Alto de la Morcuera, Madrid, Colmenar Viejo, Madrid, Hoyo de Manzanares, La Cabrera, Madrid, La Pedriza, Manzanares el Real, Madrid, Spain and interiors in Elios Studios, Rome, Lazio, Italy(studio). As always , the musician Ennio Morricone, supported by Bruno Nicolai , compose a nice Spaghetti soundtrack and well conducted ; it's full of guttural sounds and emotive score .
Sergio Sollima's direction is well crafted, here he's less cynical and humorous and more inclined toward violence and too much action. Colorful and evocative cinematography by Emilio Foriscot and Rafael Pacheco , reflecting marvelously the habitual Almeria outdoors . Director Sergio Sollima achieved in "Face to face" possibly one of his bests works of a modest career , with some memorable scenes and good camera movement such as the bank hold-up and the ending duels ; all of them make only can say that this movie seemed to be a true surprise . The picture was well directed by Sollima and following directing successes as Pirate films such as ¨ Sandokan ¨ and ¨ Black Corsario ¨ . Rating : Better than average Western . Essential and indispensable watching .
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