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A Reason to Live, a Reason to Die (1972)

Una ragione per vivere e una per morire (original title)
Branded a coward for surrendering his New Mexico fort to the Confederates without firing a shot, a Union colonel attempts to redeem himself by leading a band of condemned prisoners on a suicide mission to recapture it.

Director:

Tonino Valerii

Writers:

Rafael Azcona (screenplay), Ernesto Gastaldi (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Coburn ... Colonello Pembroke
Telly Savalas ... Maggiore Ward
Bud Spencer ... Eli Sampson
Georges Géret ... Sergente Spike
Reinhard Kolldehoff ... Sergente Brent (as Rene Kolldehoff)
Guy Mairesse Guy Mairesse ... Donald MacIvers
José Suárez ... maggiore Charles Ballard (as Jose Suarez)
Ugo Fangareggi Ugo Fangareggi ... Fred
Benito Stefanelli Benito Stefanelli ... Samuel Pickett un ex condannato
Adolfo Lastretti ... Will Fernandez / Will Culder (as Guy Ranson)
Fabrizio Moresco Fabrizio Moresco ... Ward's Assistant
Francisco Sanz Francisco Sanz ... Farmer (as Paco Sanz)
Carla Mancini Carla Mancini
Joe Pollini Joe Pollini ... Jeremy
Mario Pardo ... Roger, Farmer's Son
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Storyline

A dishonoured army officer saves the lives of some hardened criminals on condition that they help him regain his honour. Will they live up to his expectations? Written by Hector Farrugia <hector.farrugia@magnet.mt>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

recapture | mission | fort | officer | army | See All (42) »

Taglines:

A handful of condemned men on an impossible mission, against hopeless odds...

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Italy | France | West Germany | Spain

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 August 1973 (Spain) See more »

Also Known As:

A Reason to Live, a Reason to Die See more »

Filming Locations:

Almería, Andalucía, Spain See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(1973) (theatrical) | (Northern Countries PAL DVD) | (original uncut)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The prison set from John Guillermin's " El Condor " was re-used during the filming. See more »

Goofs

At the end of Telly Savalas' first scene he lights up a modern cigarette which clearly has a filter. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Alfonso Sansone produttore per caso (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Dirty Bunch
27 November 2009 | by FightingWesternerSee all my reviews

Disgraced Union officer James Coburn saves himself and a few degenerates, including Bud Spencer, from hanging by suggesting a daring raid on the impregnable Fort Holman, currently being held by mad rebel General Telly Savalas. As the introductory crawl suggests, Coburn has greater motivations than that of simple patriotism.

Inspired by The Dirty Dozen with a bit of Where Eagles Dare and The Wild Bunch thrown in, this is an entertaining Italian western/Civil War movie that makes good use of the massive sets previously built for the film El Condor.

Generally worth recommending, Massacre At Fort Holman (also widely known as A Reason To Live, A Reason To Die, with Coburn dubbed by someone else and Bud Spencer apparently by character actor R.G. Armstrong!) sags some in the middle but things pick up and the final battle is fairly exciting.

There's a great performance by the always cool James Coburn, while that of the supposedly insane Telly Savalas is actually more subdued than usual. He was much more zesty in Pancho Villa and A Town Called Hell, though this is still a better movie.


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