If You Meet Sartana, Pray for Your Death / Se incontri Sartana, prega per la tua morte (Gianfranco Parolini, 1968)

(sartana1968) #81

what can i say? for me sartana it’s something soo great for you not ok
others are crazy for django others crazy for silenzio

(Silence) #82

I didn’t like If You Meet Sartana, Pray For Your Death much first time I watched it, but I really liked it the second time around.

(Chris_Casey) #83

I thought I had commented on this film a few years ago; but, apparently that isn’t the case.

IF YOU MEET SARTANA–PRAY FOR YOUR DEATH is my most favorite of all the Sartana films.

One problem I have with Carnimeo’s entries in the series is that there are too many overly anachronistic elements in them. For example, the modern-day, flashing, neon Las Vegas signs indicating the gambling town in ANGEL OF DEATH (thankfully, some releases of this film have those insert shots from the original Italian version removed!). And Alfie in LIGHT THE FUSE… really bugs me. They didn’t have cigarette lighters in those days…and though they did have “mechanical toys” they were more like clockwork type things and not like the battery-powered toy robot that Alfie appears to be.
I don’t mind a little anachronism in films (after all, I like the TV show THE WILD WILD WEST…and it was full of them!); but, for some reason I find the anachronistic bits in the Carnimeo films jarring instead of enjoyable.
Also, I didn’t like that each successive Sartana film became more silly than its predecessor.

That said…believe it or not…I consider myself a fan of the Sartana films, overall.
But, I LOVE Parolini’s film the most!

(Col. Douglas Mortimer) #84

The Carnimeo films are certainly alot more cartoonish than the Parolini one. I think the weaknesses of the Parolini one is that the music wasn’t as good as the Carnimeo’s and the plot is very hard to follow. But it makes up for it by having the best cast in the series (Berger, Kinski, Chaplin, Sancho) .They are all good films, I like light the fuse the best followed by the Parolini.

(sartana1968) #85

the second time it’s better always… you can make a total result

(sartana1968) #86

‘if you meet sartana’ for me 11 out of 10!

(MrE2Me) #87

The title amuses me, because anyone who meets Sartana needn’t bother praying for their death - they’ll get that soon enough. He usually doesn’t give anyone time to inhale, let alone pray.

Not a bad entry in the SW genre by any means, but its flaws were significant enough for me to give it 3 stars out of 5. The unnecessarily convoluted plot, filled with a cast of backstabbing double-crossers and far too many “oops, the gold isn’t where we thought it was!” moments, make it hard to stay invested in the story or the characters. There’s not much point, when every five minutes everything you thought you knew flies out the window.

But aside from that, it’s executed well and has its fair share of entertaining moments. I actually enjoyed Berger as Lasky, a character so nuts that you almost forget Kinski was in the movie at all! The (admittedly unoriginal) use of the musical watch was effective, even if it seemed to have supernatural powers. What made it suddenly start playing when it was hidden in the cow skull, for example? Spooky!

I watched $10,000 Blood Money after this, and thought both that film and Garko’s role in it were better. Still, I look forward to checking out more of the Sartana series.

(Col. Douglas Mortimer) #88

I love this film but I have to agree with you on this. Before I used to think that the convoluted plot was a positive because it just gave the film more rewatch value. But now I just think its detrimental to the film. Its cumbersome and annoying to just spend the whole movie trying to figuring out what the hell is going on. I prefer movies where you don’t have to think so much! I give this film a 4 out of 5. It would’ve been a five if the plot was more straight forward and less confusing.

(MrE2Me) #89

Now that I’ve watched 3 of the Sartana films (next up is Have a Good Funeral…), I realize that a convoluted plot is kind of a requirement for each entry, like the gadgets he uses. I didn’t realize that when I saw this one first. I still think it hurts the films more than it helps them, but at least I know what to expect going into them now.

(Col. Douglas Mortimer) #90

You might like Have a good funeral the best because its got the easiest plot to follow in the series.

(scherpschutter) #91

I don’t mind thinking about movies, but preferably not about the plot. To me plots are not too important, I’m more interested in style, ideas, historical backgrounds etc. I don’t dislike the Sartana movies, but I never paid too much attention to those plots, they’re deliberately confusing, which means I don’t have to pay too much attention to them. I see Sartana in the first place as a tongue-in-cheek, more lightweight, but still very conscious and stylish approach to the genre after the diehard westerns of Leone.

(Stanton) #92

And the plots are more confuse than complex. Convoluted is a fair description.

(Andy) #93

This is what really makes the Carnimeo Sartana movies enjoyable for me: the music. The Sartana character is just so bad ass too and Garko is amazing (to me at least). I would have to agree that the first one by Parolini does have the best cast. But, I also like Light the Fuse the most (followed by this one, then Have a Good funeral, then Angel of Death). I don’t mind the complicated plots, they merely create a world for Sartana to go about his badassery, always getting the upper hand and fooling everyone. Sure some of the gimmicks are anachronistic but who cares, it’s a spaghetti western, they’re full of them. Gave the film 5 stars. :slight_smile:

(MrE2Me) #94

[quote=“Col. Douglas Mortimer, post:90, topic:188”]You might like Have a good funeral the best because its got the easiest plot to follow in the series.[/quote]Indeed it does, yet now that I’ve seen them all I think I like the first and last of the Sartana flicks best. The middle two weren’t as entertaining or fast-paced. Tough for me to choose a favorite between If You Meet… and Light the Fuse… The first is, well, the first, but the last is really polished and fun.

(Col. Douglas Mortimer) #95

I would choose Light the Fuse as the best. The plot is complex for sure, but I was able to understand it after a couple of viewings.

(sartana1968) #96

you find the action boring??? strange…

(sartana1968) #97

tonight will see it again with pizza 8)

(Stanton) #98

Friend of yours?

(sartana1968) #99

yes a close friend but he not see westerns, i told him many this for the movie and we see it yesterday
he enjoying the whole movie, he didn’t understand the plot, i told him it’s very complicated and
must see the film many many times to understand things

(John Welles) #100

If You Meet Sartana Pray for Your Death (1968), directed by Gianfranco Parolini and starring Gianni Garko, William Berger Fernando Sancho, Sidney Chaplin(!) and Klaus Kinski phoning in a cameo role, has only one great thing going for it, and that’s its ridiculously over the top title. The rest is a banal Spaghetti Western that has no tension and no direction.

The script, such as it is, has a lot of incident and detail, none of which is interesting, as it is completely convoluted and very hard to care what happens to whom. Still, the plot is something like this: Sartana (Garko) gets involved with an insurance swindle run by several dignitaries, who hire a Mexican gang to steal a strong-box, and an American gang, led by Lasky (Berger), to kill the Mexicans.

It takes a very long time, too long, to find all this out, and by that point, I ceased to care. Berger is a good actor, one that fits very well into the greed-fill world of Spaghetti’s, but isn’t given anything interesting to do and is wasted completely. Kinski obviously was doing his role for the money, which is a shame, as his is, career wise the best actor in the film. Garko has a good opening line (“I am your pallbearer.”), but not much else, and doesn’t have the same magnetic presence as Clint Eastwood or Lee Van Cleef.

The director made Sartana and other “Circus” Westerns like this. They’re called “Circus” Westerns because there is so much jumping around and choreographed back-flips that you might be watching a kung-fu movie and not a Spaghetti. The sets here aren’t so much grand as big, to accommodate all the acrobatics; it has a hefty budget, but the desert scenes are shot in some quarry. Why? I suspect because Parolini was more interest in making an action film that just happened to be set in the West than creating a Western. These types of Spaghetti’s were certainly very popular in their day, and they gave a lifeline to an ailing genre a few years later. I just wish the lifeline had been better. Maybe saying this movie is an insult to the genre is too strong, but when you see progressive and transcendent Spaghetti Westerns like Black Jack and Once Upon a Time in the West that were made in the same year, you realise how lazy this film is.