The Grand Duel / Il grande duello (Giancarlo Santi, 1972)


(Sheriff Foster) #221

Nice film overall. The best part was of course the end duel scene and the amazing music score one of the best in a SW. The music makes it worth watching and of course the great Lee Van Cleef.


(Col. Douglas Mortimer) #222

To this day I still don’t understand why Alberto Dentice shoots LVC’s hat off during the final duel.

Also, Dentice point blank tries to kill LVC, only to find out that the bullets where taken out of the gun, and then the girl still says “He doesn’t look like a murderer”.

Than at the end Dentice and the girl are kissing each other even though they barely spoke the whole time.


(sartana1968) #223

[quote=“Col. Douglas Mortimer, post:222, topic:199”]To this day I still don’t understand why Alberto Dentice shoots LVC’s hat off during the final duel.

Also, Dentice point blank tries to kill LVC, only to find out that the bullets where taken out of the gun, and then the girl still says “He doesn’t look like a murderer”.

Than at the end Dentice and the girl are kissing each other even though they barely spoke the whole time.[/quote]
maybe in the uncut version the dialoge between dentice and the girl was much longer


(Halleluja) #224

Watched this for the first time tonight and it was a belter - 4/5 for me - great music, great directing and Lee Van Cleef being as cool and awesome as only he can be.

Didn’t actually notice any cuts to the film and the picture quality was pretty good. Can’t believe I didn’t see the twist coming *slaps head - Guess that’s why I love spaghettis!

Very watchable spaghetti - I’ll be humming that theme tune for weeks!

Coolest bit - Clayton’s stroll into town pointing out all the gunmen

(I think LVC’s hat was shot off to force him to draw first - otherwise there was a chance one of the 3 Saxons would get him - and in fact for a moment I thought they had :o)


(Fendersrule) #225

Watched this last night. I’ve heard from many places that the uncut version isn’t at all better.

The storyboard and scenes are sometimes very schizophrenic at times. I even caught myself rewinding because I felt I totally missed something…and I didn’t. It all comes together better at the end, for sure.

The plot is almost the same exact thing as The Big Gundown.

The soundtrack is a top 5 for s.w. for me, easily. It’s above beautiful. This soundtrack is a fine example of a the standard for spaghetti, and it’s easy to see how most fail reaching what this one has. This movie was easily inspired by Once Upon a Time int he West, my favorite s.w.

The duel is one of the best scenes in this sub-genre.

The action is very good. There is an “epic” nature to this film.

Best of all, there is a “dreamy,” surrealistic nature to this film.

This is in my top 10, easily. What it needs, is a really good restoration on an HD print so that I can better see and hear what’s going on. I also watched this from some “collection” set, and it wasn’t anamorphic so I had to stretch the image…VHS quality here. Does anyone have the WIld-East DVD? I NEED IT!!

This is also one of those s.w. that takes repeated viewings, I feel.


(Mickey13) #226
The action is very good. There is an "epic" nature to this film.
The action scenes are sometimes ridiculous in this one IMO. Dentice kills the man on the roof and next he jumps over the building, kills one of the bounty killers (I don't remember it very good) and falls on the ground without a scratch... Damn, it isn't Sabata! It kills the atmophere a bit for me. Not to mention that terrible cuts, they always are making me nervous! I have to watch an uncut version. Anyway the action wasn't that good I'd say... It was on my Top 20 for a while but it fell down... It's a pity it was only Santi's spaghetti - this guy has a great potential. If he had made some other films, he could have become my favorite director... The grand duel is very good, but not as grand as I expected...

(Fendersrule) #227

I’d be curious to see which 20 s.w.s you think beat The Grand Duel. I think you’re going to get lots of disagreements. Granted, I’ve only seen about 20 s.w., and this one is clearly towards front of the pack.

And ditto on the poster that said that all s.w.s have flaws. The Grand Duel is no different, and neither is any other non-Leone s.w. The only s.w. that I would call flawless would only be a handful of Leone’s westerns. All else, flawed. Surprise!

Some of your negatives toward the film I see as positive. It’s action scenes like that that make it stand out, and isn’t “ordinary.” Hell, even one of the No Name Trilogy movies had that…Eastwood hanging on a sign post while rolling into town. That’s not a negative. That’s simply spaghetti flavor. :slight_smile:

The only thing that’s really wrong with this film, aside from it’s “normal” and “expected” flaws as mentioned, is the fact that it deserves a far better transfer. This is a gold nugget.


(Mickey13) #228

[quote=“Fendersrule, post:227, topic:199”]I’d be curious to see which 20 s.w.s you think beat The Grand Duel. I think you’re going to get lots of disagreements. Granted, I’ve only seen about 20 s.w., and this one is clearly towards front of the pack.

And ditto on the poster that said that all s.w.s have flaws. The Grand Duel is no different, and neither is any other non-Leone s.w. The only s.w. that I would call flawless would only be a handful of Leone’s westerns. All else, flawed. Surprise!

Some of your negatives toward the film I see as positive. It’s action scenes like that that make it stand out, and isn’t “ordinary.” Hell, even one of the No Name Trilogy movies had that…Eastwood hanging on a sign post while rolling into town. That’s not a negative. That’s simply spaghetti flavor. :slight_smile:

The only thing that’s really wrong with this film, aside from it’s “normal” and “expected” flaws as mentioned, is the fact that it deserves a far better transfer. This is a gold nugget.[/quote]
Understand your point of view, I didn’t mean The grand duel is ordinary. I just wanted to say that it isn’t sometimes very realistic. I still think it’s a very good movie, it is on my alternative top 10. This is truly magic film, but… it has Dentice. :-
He is the one who spoils this film for me. He has no potential and isn’t convincing at all. Other actors are doubtless great: Horst Frank, Marc Mazza, Klaus Grünberg and of course Lee… :wink:
And the action isn’t the thing that I appreciate the most in this one. I’d give strong 4,25 stars out of 5. But if I saw an uncut version… who knows… I could give 5 even.
BTW I really like a machine gun massacre - very well filmed (one of my favorites moments).


(JonathanCorbett) #229

Personally, I think 20 is a very reductive amount… :wink:


(Mickey13) #230

Yeah actually most of my Top 20 I watched after my first 20 SWs. There is so many hidden gems in this genre that spaghetti westerns always keeps surprising me. :slight_smile:


(Stanton) #231

You may be disappointed but I know about 100 SWs which I prefer without any doubt to The Grand Duel.

I would agree with you about the flaw question. Even some big classics have some astonishing flaws, but also some astonishing brilliant scenes, which are imo better than anything in Grand Duel.

But if you have watched another 100 SWs you may see things also different. Maybe …


(scherpschutter) #232

In my opnion there’s no such thing as a flawless film, even the best have shortcomings. But The Grand Duel is only a run of the mill spaghetti western, watchable, but that’s about it. I guess it seems a bit better than it really is because it was made at a time that serious or half-serious spaghettis had become a rarity.


(Stanton) #233

I think there are many flawless films. Unless you call everything a flaw which may be the reason in ones opinion that a certain film is not the “best ever”.

Even some minor films don’t have flaws imo if they ars constantly made on the same level. generally said it is easier to make a flawless film if the director prefers to do colder, more distant filme, while it is more trick to remain flawless if a director is one of the kind who are visually powering. Means that it is easier for a cold controled Melville gangster film to be flawless than for a film balancing on the razor’s edge like The Wild Bunch. and OUTW would be for that somewhere in teh middle between La Samurai and The Wild Bunch. To name 3 film of the late 60s.

Or Kubrick had less trouble to make a flawless film than Lynch. Or for Kubrick it was easier to make a flawless film with 2001 (which is flawless imo) than with A clockwork Orange


(tomas) #234

actually, some Leone´s western are flawed for me - exceptions are Outitw and GBU


(Fendersrule) #235

Notice I said a handful. :slight_smile: You can arguably add FAFDM to that list, too.

Once Upon a Time in the West is arguably the greatest film ever made, regardless of genre.


(Fendersrule) #236

I still disagree. “Watchable, but that’s about it” is reserved for Companeros, Hellbenders, Navajo Joe, Hills Run Red, Run Man Run, Django Shoot!, Texas Adios, Trinities, etc. Plus, remember there’s probably around 100 pieces of complete crap s.ws. that this one tears apart. This is far more than “middle of the road.”

The soundtrack alone smashes 95% of s.w.s:

I’d even go to say that this is the best non-morricone ST I’ve heard in a western to date. It even tears apart half of Morricone’s STs, and I pretty much worship Ennio. Absolutely gorgeous is the only word I can fathom for this piece of music.

You have to see The Grand Duel from the correct angle to understand why it deserves to easily be a top 10 western. It’s operatic, dreamy, and a bit surrealistic, much like how Once Upon a Time in the West was. It has the right soundtrack to elevate itself into greatness, as well. I totally enjoy it. It’s one of Quentin’s favorites, too. :slight_smile: We seem to share a consensus.


(tomas) #237

actually, i can´t - FAFDM is not even in my TOP 20 - what a heresy


(sartana1968) #238

i believe giancarlo santi must have hidden the uncut print somewhere ???


(Mickey13) #239

Hope so. :wink:


(sartana1968) #240

any news for the uncut version of grand duel??? ???