The Man Called Noon / Lo chiamavano Mezzogiorno (Peter Collinson, 1973)


(Romaine Fielding) #1

I watched this over the weekend.
Not really very spaghetti-like. The only thing I liked about it was the performance by Stephen Boyd.
Richard Crenna seemed too old to play the lead part realistically. He seemed too old for the part even in 1974. Why did he get this role? At one point he falls out of a second story window, is shot, and nearly trampled by horses. But all he suffers is amnesia. We should be so lucky.
Like a lot of Spaghettis there are great gaps of logic in the story line. Not a problem usually but this movie seems to want to take itself too seriously. It has no sense of humor about itself (and there is lots of silliness).
Crenna is a good guy type hero (though this is often ambiguous) and that marks it as more American than anything else. (Plus a contived love story).
A couple of nice fight scenes but that’s about it.


(Stanton) #2

Oh oh, there will be something coming soon …


(Romaine Fielding) #3

Yeah, I was somewhat gun-shy about being critical. ('Cause I DO love these films)
But my observations are fair I think.
When you start self-censoring yourself because you are afraid to post an innocuous opinion, things have gotten out of hand.


(Stanton) #4

Of course they are fair


(caldwell76) #5

I think the stuff with the flaming balls of fire being hurled at the house and the slow-mos of the horses falling all over the place are pretty cool. Haven’t watched it all but my dad likes it.


(scherpschutter) #6

[quote=“Romaine Fielding, post:1, topic:945”]I watched this over the weekend.
Not really very spaghetti-like. The only thing I liked about it was the performance by Stephen Boyd.
Richard Crenna seemed too old to play the lead part realistically. He seemed too old for the part even in 1974. Why did he get this role? At one point he falls out of a second story window, is shot, and nearly trampled by horses. But all he suffers is amnesia. We should be so lucky.
Like a lot of Spaghettis there are great gaps of logic in the story line. Not a problem usually but this movie seems to want to take itself too seriously. It has no sense of humor about itself (and there is lots of silliness).
Crenna is a good guy type hero (though this is often ambiguous) and that marks it as more American than anything else. (Plus a contived love story).
A couple of nice fight scenes but that’s about it.[/quote]

It wasn’t my type of (spaghetti) western either
I thought Crenna wasn’t bad, tho’

I must have said this before: the story about this amnesiac gunslinger reminded me of Ludlum’s first Bourne novel, The Bourne Identity
I have never read the Louis L’Amour novel this film was based upon, so I can’t compare Ludlum’s novel with his; it seems more likely that Ludlum saw this movie and was intrigued by these story elements about amnesia
Anyway, I have never heard that Ludlum had legal problems with L’Amour’s heirs or Collinson, which surprises me

I think the story, original or not, was quite interesting, but not enough was done with it
Some good action scenes, but there are too much dust and slamming doors etc. in order to give the film an ‘artistic’ look.


(Romaine Fielding) #7

[quote=“scherpschutter, post:6, topic:945”]It wasn’t my type of (spaghetti) western either
I thought Crenna wasn’t bad, tho’

I must have said this before: the story about this amnesiac gunslinger reminded me of Ludlum’s first Bourne novel, The Bourne Identity
I have never read the Louis L’Amour novel this film was based upon, so I can’t compare Ludlum’s novel with his; it seems more likely that Ludlum saw this movie and was intrigued by these story elements about amnesia
Anyway, I have never heard that Ludlum had legal problems with L’Amour’s heirs or Collinson, which surprises me

I think the story, original or not, was quite interesting, but not enough was done with it
Some good action scenes, but there are too much dust and slamming doors etc. in order to give the film an ‘artistic’ look.[/quote]

It put me in mind of The Bourne Identity too. Very similar in that each character is unware of his history but is aware that he pocesses highly developed martial skills.
I’ll bet the hero with amnesia is not an uncommon character across genres.


(SARTANA DJANGO BALLADS) #8

MAN CALLED NOON 1973 RICHARD CRENNA ROSANNA SCHIAFFINO

This is a CLASSIC VIOLENT WESTERN which is

100 TIMES BETTER than Wild Bunch 1969 and Great Silence 1968 BOTH POOR CASTS ???

RICHARD CRENNA IS GOD


(Romaine Fielding) #9

I like Richard Crenna. He’s an ecxellent actor. And yes, in as much as we are all part of the larger diety, he is a God.

Right after I watched Man Called Noon I watched Castellari’s Kill Them All And Come Back Alone.
Chuck Conners.
Now there’s an older guy that I could believe could fall out of a 2-story window and come up fightin’. I’d be worried that he might have harmed the ground! What a tough looking guy.
Richard Crenna, not so much.

Fun moive though. Definitely worth the look for any fan of the genre.


(Squonkamatic) #10

I’ve tried to buy this about four times on some crap cheapo DVD by “Vintage Classics” and all four were defective, gave up on it – is there another version to look for? I’d like to see it all the way through, it’s got an offbeat enough cast to give it a shot, though I agree with some of the observations that it’s look/feel isn’t very inspiring.


(ENNIOO) #11

Is this the one you have been having trouble with?


(Squonkamatic) #12

Yes but the cover was significantly different, maybe they found time to re-press it.


(ENNIOO) #13

I had no problems with this issue…I may have been lucky perhaps…


(korano) #14

A Good Western. I find that Louis L’amour novels make great westerns. I really found the camera work interesting and for a British western it doesn’t suck (i.e Pancho Villa, A Town Called Hell.)


(ENNIOO) #15

Like the story to this and Crenna aswell. Yes there are a few sounds of doors shutting, sort of reminded me of my dad as he had a habit of closing doors. Action picks up pretty well towards the end, but probably prefer the shorter shootings building up to this. Shame to see Crenna’s part underground house get wrecked as thought it was pretty stylish. Viewed the new UK dvd, which is the best I have seen the film look so far. Sound appeared a little tinny at times, but then again it may be my ears :stuck_out_tongue: .


(ION BRITTON) #16

Very enjoyable and moody western with some great locations and a good perfomance by Crenna. I found the plot a bit confusing and the score had some inappropriate parts. The spaghetti feel is not very intense, but that’s not a big problem in this film. 8/10


(scherpschutter) #17

Haven’t seen the film in a while, but remember it rather well

Didn’t really care for it; some good moments, a good Crenna, a few good-looking women (shades of Johnny Guitar), but too many slapping doors (yes, I had such a father door, not only did he had a habit of closing them, he always told us that we should develop the same habit) and kitschy photography (low angles, unusual compositions). All too deliberately arty-farty.


(Reverend Danite) #18

Not your ears Ennioo - I found the sound inferior to the visuals as well.
It’s been mostly said above, but to echo some points that coincide with my perspective.
Silly fall from too high early on, but a stylish Crenna pulls off the role of amnesiac killer well. The arty-farty angles add to the film imo. Hadn’t previously noticed before that the dead bloke in the coffin wakes up (briefly). Stylish evil bitch woman baddy a bonus. With Ennioo about the house - I could live in that pad. There are some good shootouts earlier that are better than the protracted one at the finale.
All in all, a stylish not very spaghetti-ish western that is excellent in parts. The whole lacks some logic though but holds together because of Crenna (who’s superb) and his supporting cast.
The soundtrack is good as well - but very derivative, sounding at various times like from a traditional American western, but also a bit Dollars at times and very OUATITW at others.
Enjoyable - and great to see in this new release.
7 outa 10 (rounded down to 3 outa 5 should it come to a vote).


(Phil H) #19

In the days before central heating I think we all had Dads like this. Desperate to keep rooms warm and save money. Mine was the same.


(scherpschutter) #20

There were some complaints about the audio on a French forum too

Maybe if your audio is so lacklustre, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to add subtitles

And oh yeah, those wise dads (and those negligent kids)
We had an old charcoal-burner when I was a small kid, and I still see my father reading the newspaper in front of it, sitting on the floor, a rolled cigarette in the corner of his mouth