This is sad news.
When I decided that I was going to expand my experience of Italian westerns beyond the Dollars trilogy, OUaTitW and Django, Django Kill was the movie I had to see next. Its reputation as something of a cinematic hand grenade had preceded it and intrigued me utterly, and that reputation alone was probably as instrumental in my wanting to explore the Spags further as my love for FaFDM and TG,tB&tU. I still wasn’t exactly sure what it was I thought Spags were going to be or even what I thought I wanted/expected from them exactly, beyond some abstract notions of slow-burning tension, sudden bloody violence, and characters which were hideous, beautiful AND cool-as-f*ck all at once. Anyway, whatever it is that I thought I might want from these films, Django Kill delivered all of it. Everything good about the movie felt purposely off-kilter, slick with an implacable, feverish sense of dread. Yet everything bad about the movie - it’s far, far from faultless of course - somehow seemed to serve the fabric of the movie. The feel of it. During that first pass through “The Unhappy Place”, I wouldn’t have been in the slightest bit surprised had the movie gear-shifted into a full-on Lovecraftian horror with tentacled nightmares bursting out of the earth, screaming and ripping.
Anyway, my spag adventure ever since then has largely been a hit-and-miss exercise in chasing the straight-to-the-brain rush with which Django Kill hit me. It’s a weird movie, a flawed movie, it’s not actually my favourite Spaghetti western (though it’s right up there) and if some were to say that it’s not even an especially good movie, I’d understand where they’re coming from. But it’s a movie that took a strange and vicious hold of me, and never really let go. It’s my movie, now. My spag. And I’m thankful to Giulio Questi for it.