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The Big Gundown (1966)

La resa dei conti (original title)
Approved | | Western | 29 November 1966 (Spain)
Unofficial lawman John Corbett hunts down Cuchillo Sanchez, a Mexican peasant accused of raping and killing a 12-year-old girl.

Director:

Sergio Sollima

Writers:

Franco Solinas (story), Fernando Morandi (story) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Lee Van Cleef ... Jonathan 'Colorado' Corbett
Tomas Milian ... Manuel 'Cuchillo' Sanchez
Walter Barnes ... Brokston
Nieves Navarro ... The Widow
Gérard Herter ... Baron von Schulenberg (as Gerard Herter)
María Granada María Granada ... Rosita Sanchez
Roberto Camardiel ... Sheriff Jellicol (as Robert Camardiel)
Ángel del Pozo ... Chet Miller (as Angel del Pozo)
Luisa Rivelli ... Willow Creek Prostitute
Tom Felleghy Tom Felleghy ... Father of Chet Miller (as Tom Felleghi)
Calisto Calisti Calisto Calisti ... Mr. Lynch
Benito Stefanelli Benito Stefanelli ... Jess, Widow's Ranchero
Nello Pazzafini Nello Pazzafini ... Hondo - Ex-Union Outlaw
Antonio Casas ... Brother Smith & Wesson
José Torres ... Paco Molinas
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Storyline

Jonathan Corbett is a gunman so brave to have eliminated all the bandits of Texas. For this he is proposed for the candidacy to the Senate of the United States. In exchange he has only to support the construction of one railway line. Only after he accepts does he come to know that the Mexican Cuchillo has raped and killed a 12 year old girl. Corbett leaves on a long manhunt during which he gets to know his adversary better and discovers a variation on the crime for which the accused Cuchillo may not be as guilty as he first thought. Written by Baldinotto da Pistoia, translated by Philip-12

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Lee Van Cleef fights with guns - knives - bulls - whips! See more »

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Italy | Spain

Language:

Italian

Release Date:

29 November 1966 (Spain) See more »

Also Known As:

The Big Gundown See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (edited) | (original U.S. theatrical release) | (Blu-ray extended special edition)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Sound System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Despite having played on US television over the years, the film never received a physical US release until 2013. See more »

Goofs

When Cuchillo is outside the ranch house betraying the ranch hands, and one of them confronts him from behind a rock, the ranch hand has just worked the action on his single action rifle. You can see that because it leaves the trigger in the back/fire position and that is clearly shown. The camera pans to Cuchillo for about three seconds, and when it comes back to the ranch hand, the hammer is down on the rifle. See more »

Quotes

Jonathan Corbett: [after discovering that he has been tricked by Cuchillo into thinking he was bit by a snake] If you don't kill me right now... it'll be the last mistake you ever make.
Cuchillo Sanchez: But to kill you is a big mistake. If I kill you, they'll just send another man after me who's much smarter, MUCH.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The version shown on Movieplex, while using the same HD source as the Grindhouse blu-ray, is actually the 90 minute American theatrical cut. Thus, it's missing the reinstated monastery scenes as well as the scene with Cuchillo and his wife Rosita. This being said, as of this writing, this is the only HD version of the American theatrical cut. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Cinéman (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Run, Man, Run
Music by Ennio Morricone
Lyrics by Audrey Nohra
Performed by Maria Cristina Brancucci (as Christy)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Excellent "Spaghetti" Western
18 July 2005 | by Wulfstan10See all my reviews

This is absolutely one of the best so-called spaghetti westerns ever, after Sergio Leone's films of course, and it rates very highly among all westerns. Unlike many other non-Sergio Leone westerns, the cinematography, camera-work, etc., are all very good and some scenes are very artistic and even worthy of Leone himself.

Lee van Cleef is excellent as the pseudo-lawman/bounty hunter with integrity who believes in "justice" and "progress" for society.

Ennio Morricone, as usual, provides a great score for the film. The song is rousing, while the music for the chase scenes is excellent. Morricone also does a folk-music/square dance version of the theme for the wedding party, which is a neat touch.

The story is interesting and well-developed, as well. In its full-length version, it is in fact somewhat deep, with van Cleef's Corbett being a fairly complex character who undergoes a significant character development in the course of the film. In the abridged American version, unfortunately, he is shown as simply bounty hunter who mercilessly kills all before him in cold blood, who never bats an eye at his job, making his character two-dimensional and making the end more flat, more perfunctory, and less convincing or meaningful. In the full-length version, though, he cares about justice, gives outlaws a choice (and a chance), and there is significant development on how he becomes so obsessed with finding Cuchillo that he crosses the boundary between justice and personal obsession. He then re-examines himself and the events in which he finds himself to come to a significant realisation near the end.


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