Massacre at Grand Canyon / Massacro al Grande Canyon (Sergio Corbucci, Albert Band, 1964)


(scherpschutter) #1

http://img170.imageshack.us/my.php?image=b78611ua6.jpg

1964 – Original title: Massacro al Grande Canyon – Dir: Sergio Corbucci, Albert Band (Alfredo Antonini) – Cast: James Mitchum, Giorgio Ardisson, Jill Powers, Giacomo Rossi Stuart, Burt Nelson, Eduardo Cianelli, Nando Poggi, Vladimir Medar, Vlastimir Gavric – Music: Gianni Ferrio

Quite a few years ago, while zapping, I stumbled upon some western action. Being a western fan, I decided to stay with the movie. It looked good, was moderately entertaining, but not particularly distinguished. Some of the landscape looked like the locations used for the Winnetou movies, but the action was a bit tougher and there were no Indians in sight. I was very surprised to find out afterwards that I had watched a movie directed by Sergio Corbucci.

For the rest of the Review, go to:

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


(Stanton) #2

I was always wondering if Corbucci was fired by the producer, or if he was hired to help him out.

But because of their later cooperation on I crudeli the second option was the more likely one for me. Good to know this now for sure.

Concerning the different scores, the 2nd one was probably prepared for the new german dub without any italian involvement. There are more examples of german dubs (especially if they are made for TV) who use a different score.
Even classics like The Maltese Falcon (with an odd 60s pop-jazz soundtrack) or Stagecoach were mutilated by this method.


(Silver Wolf) #3

I have seen this film with two different opening credit sequences. I believe the one on KOCH DVD is the original one from ´64. Some tape releases have animated credit sequence very much like A Fistful of Dollars. I guess it was added when the film was re-released to bring in more “real spaghetti western atmosphere”…?


(Chris_Casey) #4

Good review, scherp!!
Nicely researched and objective.

Keep them coming, amigo!

I, personally, didn’t find as much to enjoy about this film as you did; but, I can definitely see your point about many of the film’s better aspects.


(Novecento) #5

Tom Betts at http://westernsallitaliana.blogspot.com/2009/05/remembering-albert-band.html says the following:

“Albert Band was born in Paris on May 7, 1924, the son of painter Max Band… Albert Band is the father of director Charles Band, composer Richard Band and grandfather of actors Alex and Taryn Band. Alfredo Antonini was a pseudonym he employed but mistakenly taken to be his real name.”

Scherpschutter, if this is correct, you might want to change the biographical details in your review: “Band was an American with an Italian background: his real name was Alfredo Antonini…”


(scherpschutter) #6

[quote=“Novecento, post:5, topic:1054”]Tom Betts at http://westernsallitaliana.blogspot.com/2009/05/remembering-albert-band.html says the following:

“Albert Band was born in Paris on May 7, 1924, the son of painter Max Band… Albert Band is the father of director Charles Band, composer Richard Band and grandfather of actors Alex and Taryn Band. Alfredo Antonini was a pseudonym he employed but mistakenly taken to be his real name.”

Scherpschutter, if this is correct, you might want to change the biographical details in your review: “Band was an American with an Italian background: his real name was Alfredo Antonini…”[/quote]

I’ll look into this during the next few days


(Tom B.) #7

Albert Band talked with Bill Connolly of ‘Spaghetti Cinema’ fame, and told him that his real name was Albert Band. Bill relayed the information on to me. Like most people I always believed it was Alfredo Antonini. Concerning Massacre at the Grand Canyon it’s not much and I thought very slow. Ardisson had the best role in the entire film.


(ENNIOO) #8

I agree in that it is a slow film.


(Stanton) #9

I always assumed that the american Albert Band and the Antonini Band are 2 different persons. That Antonini only choose an american sounding pseudonym which happened to be identical with an real existing director.
Great. So maybe the only one who did the pseudonym thing the other way round.

IMDB.com has him already as Band. Checking his films I found a bad horror flic I have seen without connecting it to our SW Band: Zoltan, Dog of Dracula


(Starblack) #10

Learning that Albert was the son of Max Band had already swung me round to thinking of Antonini as a pseduonym, rather than his real surname, but it’s good to have it confirmed from the horse’s mouth - via Tom of course.

Zoltan: Hound of Dracula was a childhood favourite of mine - it often used to play on late-night UK TV - although I haven’t seen it in donkey’s (hound’s?) years.


(Spaghetti Monkey) #11

Zoltan rocks! Haven’t seen it in a spell m’self.


(Spaghetti Monkey) #12

Oh yeah, and back on topic. I actually like MASSACRE a bit. No favorite, but a solid Sw nonetheless.


(Stanton) #13

From the Sergio Leone Web Board:

I have bought a book on Corbucci where it is included his autobiography. He writes: "Massacre at Grand Canyon" is one of those mysterious films which are credited to me though I only shot some scenes. It was just a mercenary business. I took the money and went back to Rome".

This explains a lot. If it’s the truth.


(normfilmbuff) #14

Also known as Massacre At Grand Canyon. Translated Title: Massacro El Grande Canyon.

My observation is the uncredited performances by actresses in spaghetti westerns.

In this movie there are three women with speaking parts. On the internet movie database the leading lady is billed as Jill Powers, a pseudonym for Milla Sannoner, yet Thomas Weisser’s “Spaghetti Westerns - The Good, The Bad and The Violent” and this site SWDB show Jill Powers (as Nancy) and Milla Sannoner (as Flake Mason’s lady), hence two people. The name Jill Powers can’t be found in anything apart from this film and Milla Sannoner appears in 26 items according to imdb.com. The third woman referred to as Maude by James Mitchum turns up within the first 30 minutes and as there are no other women credited in cast is unbilled.

normfilmbuff


(scherpschutter) #15

According to Dizionario del Western all’italiano (Marco Giusti), Jill Powers is a pseudo of Italian actress Gabriella Pallotta.


#16

First note, this looks like a Corbucci film. Scene for scene, it looks identical to something he would have shot prior to making Minesotta Clay. The lead role ( Wes Evans) is played by legendary actor James Mitchum. Mitchum really gives this film all he has and I coudn’t be happier with his performance. The story goes likes this, After being away for a long while, (avenging his father’s death) Wes Evans retuns home to find out that his lover nancy is in fact married to another man. (She thoight Wes had died) While wanting to keep a low profile, trouble is brewing, between two ranchers, the Dancer’s and Whitmore’s. Eventually a truce is offered by Wes, which calls for the Whitmore’s to stand back,and the dancer’s will send away the manson gang who they hired to help them. Of the course the twist is that Tully Dancer and his father secretly offer Flake Manson ( head of the manson gang) more money, in order to help them. As one might expect, things turn ugly from there. Overall, this is an enjoyable early entry to the genre.


#17

Without a doubt. Strange that the usual online sources (including the SWDb) still don’t mention Pallotta’s role as Nancy in Massacro.