A Stranger in Paso Bravo / Uno straniero a Paso Bravo (Salvatore Rosso, 1968)


(ION BRITTON) #1

http://www.spaghetti-western.net/index.php/Pistoleros_de_Paso_Bravo%2C_Los

The SW that is supposed to have influenced A.Margheriti in his And God Said To Cain. No doubt about it, Steffen plays a guy named Gary Hamilton and E.Fajardo plays the bad baron named Acombar…

I quite liked it to tell you the truth. The suspense is very well built on the first half hour and there’s enough mystery surrounding Hamilton’s character and the town of Paso Bravo. Some slow parts that follow unfortunately can’t keep the tension at high levels, at least not until the final scene taking place at Acombar’s place where Hamilton finally gets his revenge paying Acombar back with his own coin.

It’s obvious that the budget was relatively low, but imo the film stands quite well as whole. Steffen is above average on this one and there’s also a weird character of a frontier salesman who, among other things, charges a glass of water for 1$ and a mule for 100$, one of the film’s most ‘‘spaghettish’’ elements. The score is not a very memorable one, not bad or annoying either.

Not a classic by any stretch of imagination, but imo worthy of a view or two. 7/10


(Reverend Danite) #2

I rate this one - maybe more so than …Cain and I found my earlier thoughts about this on that thread :

“The end with Steffen shooting into the room from a rooftop to stop Eduardo Fajardo from escaping the fires is so well done (mirrors and all). I watched the ‘…Cain’ ending to compare and both are good but so very different in style. Steffen matches (or maybe outdoes) Kinski in a depiction of cold-hearted fixed stare revenge - but Kinski and ‘…Cain’ get a bigger budget, protracted drawn-out tension (they obviously wanted to get as much out of this scene as possible), and the arty-farty clever camera-stuff. BUT - although ASIPB is gonna always be the poorer cousin to AGSTC, it is a damn fine film - gritty, nasty, and as rotten as they come at it’s hateful core. Steffen is absolutely brilliant in this.”

This’ll be on my Christmas watch list I reckon - it’s due another view.


(scherpschutter) #3

Still haven’t seen it, got to get me a copy but can’t find a good release

I guess this is the kind of Steffen I like, cold-blooded, taciturn, strong-willed, determined


(LankyFellow) #4

[quote=“scherpschutter, post:3, topic:1469”]Still haven’t seen it, got to get me a copy but can’t find a good release

I guess this is the kind of Steffen I like, cold-blooded, taciturn, strong-willed, determined[/quote]

I can give a copy from a german VHS release to you.It’s no DVD quality but ok,if you dont reject the german dub.


(scherpschutter) #5

Somebody else offered me a copy already

Thanks anyway


(Reverend Danite) #6

[quote=“scherpschutter, post:5, topic:1469”]Somebody else offered me a copy already

Thanks anyway[/quote]

Santa’s already sent you one! Maybe I should’ve said earlier, but he had to check on whether you’d been a good boy first.


(Col. Douglas Mortimer) #7

This film came close to cracking my top 20. Jose Calvo was great as a Silvanito type character.I think the story shoul’ve explained what happened a little better, like why was Steffen in jail and why did someone try to burn his wife.


(ION BRITTON) #8

I think you’re right. All we learn is that the night his house was burnt he was drunk. Can’t understand much from that fact alone i guess.


(Silver Wolf) #9

Typical Steffen film. Straightforward revenge story, average budget, no new ideas but that doesn’t make it bad. I was in a mood for archetypal spaghetti and that’s what I got. Witty dialogue has survived English dubbing and the frontier salesman was one of more fun sidekicks in SWs. Steffen does his usual trick and throws his weight down before shooting but this time - get this - from driver’s seat of a stagecoach!! And to add to that, he does not kill just few guys but all six of 'em!! Steffen must have thought that “if it’s worth doing, it’s worth overdoing”. Hilarious scene! Theme song is reworking of “Cavalca cowboy” (from 7 Guns for Timothy) by the same composer. End credits mention someone who’s supposed to sing this song but in the version I got it’s instrumental.


(korano) #10

If this one is suppos to be nspiration for Cain, does it have the prolonged night scene? That is one of the best ideas ever. Setting a movie almost completely at night.


(Silver Wolf) #11

No, all action takes place during daytime. It doesn’t have any gothic atmosphere at all. That must have been Margheriti’s idea, he being a famous director of gothic horror movies. Also, Steffen’s character is just a avenger, not quasi-supernatural phantom from the past like Kinski’s.


(scherpschutter) #12

Finally watched it, thanks to the Rev

Surprisingly good
I don’t think Steffen was much better than usual, but his non-acting doesn’t really hurt the film

The similarities to And God said to Cain are obvious, but there are a lot of differences too
Cain is the better movie, also the one with the larger budget, but they’re both a must for fans
Fajardo’s best performance, if you ask me (yes even better than …)

I’ll watch it a second time before writing more about it


(Stanton) #13

Never heard of this one. I’ll put it on the search list, which is a small one meanwhile.


(Julio_Alberto) #14

In Spain we have suffered a cut version DvD, massacred and bad image …
It is a pity, because in my viewing appreciated that in its full version would be a remarkable degree.


(scherpschutter) #15

A review of this movie is now available:

http://www.spaghetti-western.net/index.php/A_Stranger_in_Paso_Bravo_Review

Special thanks to the Rev


(ION BRITTON) #16

Very well said, scherp. Like i said, although it’s not a masterpiece and despite its plot holes, it’s a very enjoyable low budget spaghetti that it deserves a proper DVD release.


(chuck connors brother) #17

Just saw this and thought it was excellent, very well paced and directed, definitely has a Margheriti feel to it (not as good for me though)… my 2nd favourite of Steffens after Train for Durango.


(Bluntwolf) #18

Good B-Western material with nice cast and nice score by Angelo Francesco Lavagnino. The theme song “Uno straniero a Paso Bravo” is sung by Vittorio Bezzi :slight_smile: !!!


(Stanton) #19

I had some expectations after reading all these favourable comments, expectations which weren’t fulfilled by this routine western.

Like in most of these ordinary SWs the 1st half is the best part of the film. The directing is unimaginative and flat looking from the beginning on, but there are at least several appealing story elements.
Especially Steffen’s scenes together with the saloon singer are nicely done and promising. But like all the other things the film promises, nothing is redeemed. There are lots of plot holes and unexplained story elements and relations between the characters which are carelessly given away. And the film doesn’t give me the notion that this is something else than inattentiveness.

Director Rosso was a one time director, and I have no doubts why he didn’t made another film.

Steffen’s first action scene is a good and effective one, but the rest sucks and in the 2nd half the shoot outs are as bad and boring as they can be. Maybe better than in Apocalypse Joe, but only for being shorter.

There is also some praise for Eduardo Fajardo, but for me he only gives a routinely oily bad guy performance. In contrast to Steffen he could do better if required (his last scene is notably weak for directing and acting). So the women have easily the best parts of the film.

The similarities to And God Said to Cain are so sketchy, that if Margheriti had changed the names (which are btw far from impressive: Acombar, Gary Hamilton and Santa Maria brothers), nobody would have drawn a connection between these 2 SWs.

All things considered A Stranger in Paso Bravo is best described by stating that Anthony Steffen again wears his too small hat.


(davidf) #20

saw this one last night and agree with the people who liked this one. Thought it very enjoyable, was among Anthony Steffen’s better performance’s and film’s and it could have had a better explanation to the why his wife and daughter were killed. Have not seen " And God Said To Cain"so cannot compare but thought this was very nearly a good film, although it just misses out making my alternative 20. 7/10