A chain mail-clad gunfighter contends with a pacifist sheriff, a seductive banker, a one-armed Mexican bandit, corrupt businessmen and hippies while trying to learn the secret of the money allegedly stolen by his lynched brother.
While a Mexican revolutionary lies low as a U.S. rodeo clown, the cynical Polish mercenary who tutored the idealistic peasant tells how he and a dedicated female radical fought for the soul of the guerrilla general Paco, as Mexicans threw off repressive government and all-powerful landowners in the 1910s. Tracked by the vengeful Curly, Paco liberates villages, but is tempted by social banditry's treasures, which Kowalski revels in.Written by
The original draft of the screenplay was written by Franco Solinas and Giorgio Arlorio, and was largely inspired by Bertolt Brecht's "The Exception and the Rule". Gillo Pontecorvo was the intended director. The screenplay was, however, largely rewritten by Luciano Vincenzoni and several others, who re-conceived the film as a Mexican Revolution-based Spaghetti Western. Solinas and Arlorio disowned the new script, and Pontecorvo stepped down as director, believing he did not have enough experience with Westerns. He instead directed Burn! (1969), a film with a similar concept. Alberto Grimaldi then hired Sergio Corbucci to direct because of his experience with Spaghetti Westerns. See more »
A plane is used to bomb Paco's fort. However planes did not begin to drop bombs until the late stages of WWI, in which they were dropped by hand. See more »
Kowalski aka the Pole:
So, Paco Roman is a clown. Well, better a live clown than a dead hero. As I, Sergei Kowalski, Polish emigrate to the New World, always realised...
[fade-in to flashback of Paco working in a mine]
Kowalski aka the Pole:
When our story began, Paco was only a peon. But one... with a difference.
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One of Corbucci's better westerns. The story concerns a bandit (Musante) who wants the legitimacy of being a "revolutionary", but needs the help of a hardened professional (Nero) to do it. Palance gives the movie some of its best moments as a gay gunslinger ( a rival mercenary) out to revenge himself on Musante for humiliating him. Not much plot, but Corbucci's fluid direction keeps it from growing stale and the god performances from the stars make it worth watching. Also look for fun, cynical dialogue and story elements from genre expert Vincenzoni. Contains the dark undertones present in other Corbucci (and Leone) westerns, but not to as great an extent as his masterpiece, "The Great Silence".
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