Seven Winchesters for a Massacre / 7 Winchester per un massacro (Enzo G. Castellari, 1967)


(Sebastian) #1

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Database linkhttp://www.spaghetti-western.net/index.php/Sette_winchester_per_un_massacro
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Anyone seen this film? Here’s Marco Leone’s review:

Anyways, I am gonna watch this on TV now. I’ll tell you guys later what I tought of it


(Sebastian) #2

the film is pretty good actually. not the best acting and cinematography (and some weird fight scenes: filmed slowly and recorded fast, as usual) but very entertaining and with a good De Masi score.


(Bill san Antonio) #3

Average movie from Enzo Castellari. Good Entertainment to spend hour and a half but nothing really to praise about. I liked the music too.


(JONAH HEX) #4

3 stars ,Edd brynes does the poor man’s Clint Eastwood bit and Castellari’s directing is purely by the numbers(contrary to his great direction of Keoma and Johnny Hamlet).Edd Brynes plays Stuart a bounty hunter who infiltrates a gang of renegade confederate soldiers under the pretext of leading them to hidden gold.


(Stanton) #5

A laughable bad film. Only Louise Barret as a feminine bounty hunter brings a bit of color in the idealess monotony. Boring.
Thank you God for the invention of the fast forward button.


(scherpschutter) #6

A Review of this (laughably bad???) movie is now available:

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

http://img504.imageshack.us/my.php?image=20958robertredfordandpabc3.jpg

There you can find out too what at least one of us is doing here …


(Romaine Fielding) #7

[quote=“stanton, post:5, topic:165”]A laughable bad film. Only Louise Barret as a feminine bounty hunter brings a bit of color in the idealess monotony. Boring.
Thank you God for the invention of the fast forward button.[/quote]
Dang. I was looking forward to the Wild East release. Not so much now, I guess. I have only seen stills of this film and Lousie Barret had me intrigued.


(Romaine Fielding) #8

[quote=“scherpschutter, post:6, topic:165”]A Review of this (laughably bad???) movie is now available:

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

http://img504.imageshack.us/my.php?image=20958robertredfordandpabc3.jpg

There you can find out too what at least one of us is doing here …[/quote]

Nice review.
I hope the other film on the Wild East upcoming double-feature is not as bad! I don’t know why I carry this prejudice but I tend not to like as much Italian westerns that are, as you decribe, too “green”. They just don’t look right. Almeria often does not look like the American west to me but it is a more than adequate substitute. The aridity of the American west is essential unless the action takes place in the mountains or snow.“Greeness” also usually means a real low budget. (Fasthand, for instance)


(Chris_Casey) #9

Heh heh!
Actually, I think Almeria looks EXACTLY like the American SOUTHWEST. The only real exception I can come up with is that they don’t have Saguaro Cacti in Almeria (hence all the bad fakes ones you can see in some SW’s!).
Legendary Almeria location hunter, Donald S. Bruce, and I used to laugh uncontrollably at Prof. Frayling’s on camera statement (used on one of the Special Edition Dollars DVDs) that “Almeria looks nothing like Arizona”! We used to laugh because he had obviously never been anywhere in Arizona besides the Grand Canyon or maybe Monument Valley or Sedona. There are areas all over Cochise County that look exactly like places I have been to in Southern Spain. There is a portion of the Whetstone Mountains just beyond Sierra Vista, where I live, that look very much like the mountains around Guadix.
There is a running gag between Tom Betts and I—as we drive around Cochise and Pima Counties here in Arizona and we pass areas that look very much (and sometimes exactly) like places we’ve been to in Almeria we always say: “Yep, Arizona looks nothing like Almeria–just ask Frayling!”!

But, I too tend to dislike many of the “green” movies for the reasons you have mentioned.

As far as SEVEN WINCHESTERS FOR A MASSACRE is concerned, I like it OK. I don’t find it laughably bad, at all. But, I do not find it outstanding in any arena (other than its musical score). It is certainly Castellari’s worst, in my opinion.


(Romaine Fielding) #10

[quote=“Chris_Casey, post:9, topic:165”]Heh heh!
Actually, I think Almeria looks EXACTLY like the American SOUTHWEST. The only real exception I can come up with is that they don’t have Saguaro Cacti in Almeria (hence all the bad fakes ones you can see in some SW’s!).
Legendary Almeria location hunter, Donald S. Bruce, and I used to laugh uncontrollably at Prof. Frayling’s on camera statement (used on one of the Special Edition Dollars DVDs) that “Almeria looks nothing like Arizona”! We used to laugh because he had obviously never been anywhere in Arizona besides the Grand Canyon or maybe Monument Valley or Sedona. There are areas all over Cochise County that look exactly like places I have been to in Southern Spain. There is a portion of the Whetstone Mountains just beyond Sierra Vista, where I live, that look very much like the mountains around Guadix.
There is a running gag between Tom Betts and I—as we drive around Cochise and Pima Counties here in Arizona and we pass areas that look very much (and sometimes exactly) like places we’ve been to in Almeria we always say: “Yep, Arizona looks nothing like Almeria–just ask Frayling!”!

But, I too tend to dislike many of the “green” movies for the reasons you have mentioned.

As far as SEVEN WINCHESTERS FOR A MASSACRE is concerned, I like it OK. I don’t find it laughably bad, at all. But, I do not find it outstanding in any arena (other than its musical score). It is certainly Castellari’s worst, in my opinion.[/quote]

Well, you would know (it’s your home)!
I have not been in your part of Arizona much (only once) but my experiences all over the American West (I have traveled extensively in most western states and am something of a “desert rat”) have been that Almeria does not look like “most” of the west. The west is, of course, a highly diverse region. I am not defending Frayling’s opinion but perhaps I should have said that Almeria does not look much like MOST of the west to me. I did not say or mean Arizona. And, of course, Almeria looks nothing like (as you said) parts of northern Arizona. Parts of Nevada and eastern California (east of the Sierra Nevada) look a little like Almeria but the geology and vegetation are quite a bit different. Perhaps because I tend to focus on geology and earth sciences I see things a little differently.


(Romaine Fielding) #11

After my last post I continued to think about this Almeria vs. Arizona thing.
Last night I watched Cemetery Without Crosses again. One of the moments when I chuckle to myself during this movie (maybe the only moment) is when Guido Lollobrigida says (roughly) this to Michelle Mercier: “They burned down our house and killed all our stock. We’re done with farming.” Anybody who has seen this movie can tell that there ain’t a goddamn thing that would grow out in that barren landscape that would support a farm.
But it serves as a representative example of how a lot of the makers of Spaghettis either did not know or care about the realities of the “authentic” west that they attempted to portray in their films.
Perhaps Frayling’s specific point is laughable but the larger point inherent in it (that Spaghetti producers and directors felt that if it “looked” close to real, then that was authentic enough) is I believe, valid. And, of course, it applied to costumes, sets, horses, etc as well as landscape.
Also, maybe Frayling mispoke. Maybe he meant to say, instead of Arizona, the larger west. I’d sure hate to be held to everything I’ve written in this forum. ;D I give him the benefit of a doubt, amigo.


(Silver) #12

Same here…i quite like this one, without finding it exceptional. I do love the score though…it gets played quite a lot. And as far as i know it is Raoul singing the theme song. Certainly sounds like him to me :slight_smile:


(Chris_Casey) #13

Oops! I just noticed that I wrote “It is certainly Castellari’s worst, in my opinion”–when I actually meant to say “It is certainly NOT Castellari’s worst”!
That dubious honor would have to go to CRY ONION, I believe.

Just wanted to clarify.


(Chris_Casey) #14

[quote=“Romaine Fielding, post:11, topic:165”]After my last post I continued to think about this Almeria vs. Arizona thing.
Last night I watched Cemetery Without Crosses again. One of the moments when I chuckle to myself during this movie (maybe the only moment) is when Guido Lollobrigida says (roughly) this to Michelle Mercier: “They burned down our house and killed all our stock. We’re done with farming.” Anybody who has seen this movie can tell that there ain’t a goddamn thing that would grow out in that barren landscape that would support a farm.
But it serves as a representative example of how a lot of the makers of Spaghettis either did not know or care about the realities of the “authentic” west that they attempted to portray in their films.
Perhaps Frayling’s specific point is laughable but the larger point inherent in it (that Spaghetti producers and directors felt that if it “looked” close to real, then that was authentic enough) is I believe, valid. And, of course, it applied to costumes, sets, horses, etc as well as landscape.
Also, maybe Frayling mispoke. Maybe he meant to say, instead of Arizona, the larger west. I’d sure hate to be held to everything I’ve written in this forum. ;D I give him the benefit of a doubt, amigo.[/quote]

Well, amigo…I understand your points. But, I don’t agree with them…completely.
I am happy to let you give Frayling the benefit of the doubt—but, I won’t.
Long story there and it involves personal exchanges and whatnot, not worth going into here.

At the risk of launching into the realm of the way off topic…

I think, having studied authentic “Western” period clothing a great deal, that there were a lot more Spaghetti Westerns that were closer to RIGHT than there were American Westerns (especially of the late 50’s and into the 1960’s). Of course, not all of them were…but, some were.
I, and a few of my Old West historian buddies (Bob Boze Bell and Drew Gomber, among them), feel that most of the time the sets and costumes in the Italian Westerns were way more authentic than say the typical John Wayne Western made in the same era. Of course, this sort of blanket statement doesn’t entirely apply to all films (Italian or American)–and it especially doesn’t apply to films made by folks like Fidani, Crea, and so forth! ha ha!

But, the main point I would like to make here is that NOBODY gets it 100% “correct” when it comes to locations, costumes, or sets. The closest I have seen, so far, would be the movie TOMBSTONE (and there are a few errors there, too).
One of the worst is the highly regarded American film TRUE GRIT.
They are supposed to be in the Oklahoma territory in that film and all around them are the great Rocky Mountains of Colorado!! There are no such mountains in Oklahoma…period.
And what about John Ford making Monument Valley out to be Texas? That aint right, either! Well, OK…some small part of the Big Bend territory might pass…but, overall…no.

So, personally, I think the Italians and the Spanish did as good, if not better, at showing just as much authenticity as many American filmmakers ever did.
And by that token, they deserve as much respect.

I feel Frayling (whom I have heard is distancing himself from the whole Italian Western thing, now, and is actually growing tired of discussing Leone!!) did the sub-genre a huge dis-service by his back-handed remark which–as you have pointed out, amigo–lends itself to the interpretation that the Italians just didn’t know what they were doing when they were making Westerns.
Many of them did.


(ENNIOO) #15

This does not surprise me.


(Stanton) #16

Very interesting to read all your remarks about the use of landscape and about the similar or not so similar looks.

I don’t have the time these days to write more about this, so only one remark.

The SW directors were imo mostly not very interested in the landscapes, or maybe most of them had not much talent for filming people in landscapes. Don’t know.
When I rewatch american westerns like Hombre or The Appaloosa, after watching so much SWs over the last 3 years, it is really breathtaking to see the magnificient photographed scenery, which I hadn’t noticed that much years ago.

Compared to many american westerns (especially the contemporary ones) even the Almeria landscape looks rather poor in most SWs, not to speak about the ultracheap italian-only made films.

But, at least, I don’t watch westerns, not even the beautiful looking, because of the landscape, but the use of landscape adds to the atmosphere, and atmosphere is what I’m interested in.


(Bluntwolf) #17

De Masi’s score is certainly the best thing about the movie. The song “Seven Men” is sung by Raoul according to the great SW theme song compilation “The ultimate Spaghetti Westerns” !!! Get it, if you can get your hands on it !!!


(scherpschutter) #18

I listened to it again this morning, and now think it is Raoul


(Silvanito) #19

Re: western clothing and landscapes

Didn’t the long coats or dusters make their debut, so to speak, in spaghettis? These were of course historically quite authentic garments.

One funny thing on the other hand is that in some of the 70s spaghettis you can almost notice a little influence by contemporary 70s fashion :smiley:

Look for example at Franco Nero’s outfit in Companeros, to me it looks somewhat 70s in style, not to mention his sideburns :smiley:

And regarding landscapes in spaghettis, wasn’t this done on purpose not filming it to look beautiful or impressive? Just as the western towns were many times presented as windblown shanty towns?


(Stanton) #20
  1. The earliest western with dusters I have seen is Henry King’s Jesse James from 1939.

  2. I think that nearly every film set in whatever a past shows (often strong) influences of it’s contemporary fashion.

  3. I was only talking about the way landscape is used, not if it looks beautiful. Breathtaking was not the fact that they filmed in a beautiful landscape, but how they shot their scenes in this landscape. And this is regardless wether it’s a magnificent or an ugly looking scenery.

I say it again, SW directors were mostly not interested in the landscape or in the looks of interiors, but they cared very much for the clothing of their protagonists.

And to be back on topic, 7 Winchesters … is one of these films in which the makers were not able or not interested to do anything creative within the film’s very low budget, so that the film only looks cheap in a very poor way.
But it seems that for Johnny Hamlet Castellari cared for the landscape, his only one where I can find an external beauty.