When did the era of spaghetti western films end_ what was the last film? what killed it? do young people know of spaghetti westerns?
If I understand your question then the answer is down to what film came out at the end of the post classic era, the 1970s. There were homage movies made in the 1980s and 90s. In my opinion the last proper Spaghetti western was CHINA 9, LIBERTY 37 (1978) starring Fabio Testi and Warren Oates. It had a largely European cast and crew and was shot in Spain and Italy. It had an American Director though.
I think what killed the genre was down to changing tastes, over saturation of the market and economic issues. European cinema went through a decline in the late 70 and into 80s.
The genre still has young fans. I guy on the site said he was 27 and a fan since his teens. I am 35 and have been a fan since my teens too. Blu ray, DVD and the Internet help develop a new fan base.
I think Beaumont-Adam’s response is spot on. I’ve never seen China 9, Liberty 37 myself, but I’ve heard it’s a keen throwback to the Classic Days. I know some folks see the Giuliano Gemma films Silver Saddle and Tex and the Lord of the Deep as the last gasps for the genre, but I think because Gemma, in his later career, wanted his films to be seen more by kids, this prevented them from being seen as true SW style films, but Silver Saddle I believe has its merits.
For me CHINA 9, LIBERTY 37 (1978) is in every respect an US western. An interesting follow up to Hellman’s earlier pessimistic westerns The Shooting and Ride in the Whirlwind.
The SW ended when people lost interest in it, and that was already in the early 70s. And survived fora short time span in form of comedies and parodies, which accompanied the sub-genre form the beginning on, but became the main focus after the enormous success of the 2nd Trinity film. With My Name Is Nobody, with its blend of SW style, US twilight western motives and Spencer/Hill style of comedy, the SW found a fitting end. In 1974 the dramatic SW was virtually dead, but still a few directors tried to revive the genre by returning to the classic style with a couple of “serious” westerns. Films like Four of the Apocalypse, Keoma or California, the last gasp of a dead genre. They at least had some success, but in the 80s some further films appeared, even a Django 2 with Franco Nero, so the SW still was somehow there, only that these films were barely noticed.
If you want a last SW, why not Jonathan of the Bears (1994)?
Despite having Nero in the lead it was not even released here in Germany. That way a genre really ends, when really nobody anymore cares.
I enjoyed Jonathan of the Bears. I class it as a homage movie. But it is a spaghetti western because of who is in it and who made it.
Director: Enzo G. Castellari
Screenplay: Enzo G. Castellari, Lorenzo De Luca, Joshua Sinclair
Producers: Franco Nero, Vittorio Noia, Aleksandr Shkodo
It starts as Dances with Wolves part 2, and it ends as SW, without being able to melt the 2 styles. It was watchable, but also a bit boring towards the end.
I like that description Stanton!