Left Handed Johnny West / Johnny West il mancino (Gianfranco Parolini, 1965)


(Silvanito) #1

This is the first western by Gianfranco Parolini, who later were to make the Sabata films. I haven’t seen it myself, but I’ve heard it’s pretty good.
Anybody here seen it?


(django the bastard) #2

its a nice flick parolini is reliable


(Yodlaf Peterson) #3

i’ve never seen this, is it any good.


(Reverend Danite) #4

[quote=“Yodlaf Peterson, post:3, topic:472”]i’ve never seen this, is it any good.[/quote][quote=“Lindberg, post:1, topic:472”]I haven’t seen it myself, but I’ve heard it’s pretty good.
Anybody here seen it?[/quote]

CONTAINS SPOILERS - (But as it’s shit anyway, who cares …?)

I reckon there’s some others that’ve seen this and if I remember right it has appeared in the ‘worst ever’ lists.
It was my turn, last night, to be bemused, confused and mildly entertained by this turkey.
Being made in ‘65, it’s an early pointer in some ways to the sw gadgetry that were to develop further in later Parolini movies. In this there is some Sabata-style skullduggery from the twin brother baddies - that include a gun-stick and a trick coffin.
There’s also, unfortunately, some stupid buffoonery, (pre-)Bud Spencer-stylee that verges on the slapstick, and includes pushing a fully-laden donkey over for ‘laughing’ (which was actually quite funny, if somewhat un-pc). This ridiculous side of the film emanates mainly from the two ex-boxer characters who start a bout of ‘spontaneous’ fisticuffs at every available moment. There’s also an ol’scrote dynamite expert - all of these ol’ tossers ham it up big style - and the scrappin’ and drinking antics just get somewhat tiresome after a while.
There’s also plenty of explosions that bring the horses keeling over, that reminded me of the scene in MNIN regarding the fate of the Wild Bunch.
So - this all sounds like this is a ground-breaking proto-spaghetti that shows the way forward?
Well, it could’ve done, if it had been handled better. There is a good film in here somewhere maybe. There’s left-handed Johnny himself who’s a half-breed Cherokee and he’s hitched up with, at various times, a pretty mexican lass, a prettier Indian gall, and Gypsy the cross-breed white she-terrier that had my Sparky :-* barking for more.
And there’s a reasonable story half buried in here. And there’s the grittiness (only one of the aforementioned girls is gonna get out of this in one piece) … and he ain’t gonna be staying left-handed Johnny for long, after a brutal bit of pistol-bashing.
So … what ruins this film, and it’s potential, is it’s utterly ridiculous lack of logic regarding behavior, and the believeability in any of these characters - ('scepting my Sparky’s love interest). It has been mentioned before regarding other films, by others more eloquent than myself, that a film can be far-fetched and requires that ‘leap-of-faith’, that sometimes can be willingly done by the viewer - but somehow the film’s story still needs to play by the rules of it’s own inner-logic. This doesn’t. Slapstick and gritty together is a difficult enough trick to pull off - (even the otherwise good MNIN (imo) is marred in respect to this) - but if it is to work then there probably has to be a more cleverly orchestrated believable ‘real’ in the mix. There was no ‘real’ in this, just a sloppy logic. An example … Left-handed JW gets his name shortened after said pistol-beating. His girl and her father are shot dead with Johnny’s gun and we are to believe that JW’ll go to jail for their murder … and he does. It just didn’t make sense, especially as Johnny had left a couple of the baddies dead at the scene as well. In fact, not many of the killings made any sense … no-threat folk were cold-bloodedly killed (no problem there - it is a sw after all), but others were let off with a warning (from both sides), that made no sense, 'cos they’d be bound to be needing killing later on.
And why’s he called Left-handed? And not … Ambidexturous Johnny West? Instead of going off to partially mend himself as any self respecting Black Jack would, or coming up with a trick of his own as with Gemma in The Man from Nowhere or just brazening it out like a Django (but not like Silence, or we wouldn’t’ve had a film … hmmm, maybe not such a bad idea ;)) - he just becomes Right-handed Johnny West … the fastest gun in town. COP OUT!!
I was mildly entertained, but it was also a frustrating ride. It’s maybe worth a look, particularly as it is so early, but just don’t expect a lot - But, of course, this strange brew might do it for you -
but alas for me …
1 and a small bit outa 5. (Sparky gave it less - and he’s still upset :P)


(Silvanito) #5

No need for a decent DVD release then I reckon? :smiley:


(ENNIOO) #6

I am amazed Reverend you could comment so much on a ‘dud’ :o…the theme song traumitised me for a while…


(Stanton) #7

Hell. I somehow liked it, despite the silly jokes and the fistfights.

There were enough well made moments pointing out to the Parolini of the Sartana/Sabata years. A good enough forerunner to these, and at least it wasn’t a bore like the inferior God’s gun.

Likable, even if the Rev’s words shouldn’t be ignored by the faint-hearted


(Phil H) #8

Not my cup of tea at all.
Far too much nonsensical fat men brawling for me to make allowances elsewhere.


(Bill san Antonio) #9

yep, alternate title for this could have been “3 fat guys and Johnny West”.
It could have been decent film but Parolini gives those funny character maybe even screentime than to the hero. But then again, this film is such a campy turkey that maybe nothing can save it. Film is full of cliches and laughable stuff. I thought that the dog leaping in the front of the gunfire saving the hero was damn funniest thing I’ve ever seen in sw but the coffin trick after that is priceless. Oh and the indian girl in the end yelling “Johnnyyy!” :smiley: :smiley:

Good film to watch with few beers and friends.


(ENNIOO) #10

I can relate to this.


(Bad Lieutenant) #11

Got the American dvd, but still haven’t watched it because of the crap quality.


(Phil H) #12

Wise decision.


(bladerunnerblues) #13

Without a doubt,the most boring SW I ever watched.Yes,I agree,the fat men get way too much screen time.I do not mind a little comic relief in SWs,when it is actually funny,which Johnny West is not.
There is one scene where it appears that one of the fat guys has been seriously injured,and is possibly dying.This got my hopes up,'til I learned that lard ass did indeed survive after all ::).
So,the only 2 things about this film that I did like;the title song and the dog,Gypsy.
I am glad that I only paid 50 cents for this DVD,because after viewing it(yes,I somehow managed to sit through the whole thing),I chucked it in the waste basket.


(LankyFellow) #14

Hilariously the german title of it was ’ Johnny West and the boldly 3 ’


(alk0) #15

Like i wrote somewhere before:
Horrible script, horrible acting, horrible unfunny “comedy” scenes, horrible movie. Avoid like plague


(Stanton) #16

Oh come on, it’s not soooo bad.


(JonathanCorbett) #17

What? Maybe it was an alternate version…


(JonathanCorbett) #18

So, considering that I know only the Italian version of this one, is there an alternate ending or bladerunnerblues was referring to a previous scene I do not remember?


#19

Did not like this one that much. IMO, Mimmo Palmara (Johnny West) didn’t have what it takes to be a lead actor, and it shows here. Having said that, there is a few good action moments in this and some of the locations are put into good use. But the horrible acting, just about from everyone and the stupid comic scenes from the three fat ass’s, who all they want to do is brawl, ruined it for me.