Putting in my two scents, I enjoy Il Mercernario much more than this film - perhaps 'tis due to this film (as well as Il Grande Silencio) seeming fuzzy visually. I love the stories, of course, but combining Mustante’s performace along side Nero’s in TM with Palance’s lovingly twisted John (and Marcia) from Companeros would have been the ultimate synthesis of the two. We get a much better back-story on why ‘Palance’ would want to kill ‘Nero’ in Companeros than in TM. It would also be more effective to have that motivation when considering why Curly wants to off The Pollack one second, and then instantaneously letting avarice supersede vengeance when he realizes there’s a “Big Fish” on the line.
John is just too unhinged for me to not like. In fact, I feel that if Palance had not been part of this movie, I wouldn’t even rate it very memorable. The camera work seems very sloppy, it might have been intended so, but I particularly dislike the beginning when the camera pans 100 degrees around Vasco, then Penguin… reminiscent of Henry Fonda’s chillingly awesome introductory scene in OUATW but unfortunately also reminiscent of poor film student movies: they only have enough money for one take - also, seemingly written very hastily - I cite the newspaper issue ((henceforward known as NewspaperGate™)) being reported to the authorities (even via Telegraph), transmitted thus to reporters, typset, printed, dried, folded, delivered and then read by John before the train even arrives in Yuma. I suppose this could be possible, but the length of the Swede’s train trip after he hijacks the locomotive must have been fairly short as Vasco catches up with 'im within the same day… Oy!
Despite its flaws, I do like this movie, but like I said before, I wish this and …Silence wouldn’t have been so fuzzy… What would anyone recommend as the absolute best versions you can buy of Companeros and The Grand Silence in English version, or, hell, in any language, I could edit together a copy from my English copy disk’s audio and the video from any superior copy (if it exists).
Ironically, I live in the “West” and Sergios by any surname are unknown around these here parts of it…