I'm not sure how much interest there will be in these parts for a podcast episode on this film but I thought I'd post a link here for the curious. Our series of spoiler filled shows focused on the films of Antonio Margheriti continues with one of the director's westerns. Of course, the name in the credits is his standard pseudonym Anthony M. Dawson but we all know who made this excellent combination of Spaghetti Western and Blaxploitation genres. TAKE A HARD RIDE was financed by 20th Century Fox after having great success with Margheriti's previous western for the studio THE STRANGER AND THE GUNFIGHTER (1974). Teamed again with that film's star Lee Van Cleef Margheriti is able to show his skill again by directing one of best of the very few examples of a western with a mostly black lead cast. Further, this movie has the distinction of reuniting the three male leads of THREE THE HARD WAY (1974) for the last time until Fred Williamson would take it upon himself to cast them all in his 1982 film ONE DOWN, TWO TO GO. A team this good shouldn't have had to wait seven years for another big screen adventure but that's Hollywood I guess.
Co-host John Hudson and I take a run through this fun film discussing not just the director and stars but also the location shooting; the script's detailed characterizations; the bad guy's deep bench; a possible snake death; the horror of swinging bridges and the many joys of watching Jim Brown and Fred Williamson spar onscreen. It will be clear that we hold this film in high esteem and it will also be clear that John's cat Snowbell has some things to say as well. She makes her presence known throughout the show, so those meows you hear from time to time are not a ghost feline stalking you as you listen tom the podcast.
Be warned that we start the show with a few minutes of talk about what we've been reading and watching since we last podcasted together. This time out John came prepared to list off some interesting recent viewings. I take the opportunity to relate that I've been reading an excellent crime novel by the author of 'Money Shot' but I repeatedly refer to the writer by the wrong name. The author of 'Choke Hold' and its predecessor is Christa Faust NOT Christina Faust as I call her in the first part of the show. I apologize to her and to anyone out there that might go in search of her great books and wonder why they can't find them! Sorry!
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