The Man Who Killed Billy the Kid / El hombre que mató a Billy el Niño (Julio Buchs, 1967)

(Stanton) #1ó_a_Billy_el_Niño%2C_El

The forgettable SW contribution to the cinematical treatment of the Billy ze Kick mythology.

The film doesn’t care too much about the real story, but cooks his own soup about poor Billy becoming innocently an outlaw while protecting his mother, then later on is forced to kill the attemted raper and his brothers, then (surprisingly at this moment) becomes really fascinated by the gun and loses his innocence by becoming a trigger happy shooter, then becomes innocent again and falls in love, but is forced to lose his temper again cause of his (long dead) mum, and finally is shot, but not by Pat Garrett, who has to live further on with the stigma not to be what he isn’t.

Peter Lee Lawrence looks young enough to be Billy, but fails to show us any of his inner conflicts. All he does is acting on the surface.

My only interest in this film was the fact that it was shot by the Bullet for Sandoval director Julio Buchs. But both films have nothing in common.


(T.H) #2

Sounds like a movie to add to my list. I guess no DVD exists of this movie right?

(Silver) #3

Well there was an official release which is quite decent quality but it was Spanish audio only and is probably OOP now. Something Weird also did an english language version which is pretty crappy quality, and there’s another English version around that’s a bit better. I have all three… you can always pm me if you’re interested :slight_smile:


I have a 2.35 version with no subs… not sure of source.

(Starblack) #5

Just rewatched this one. I rate it slightly higher but I agree that it plays more like a title from the 1965 transitional period than a fully fledged SW.

Peter Lee Lawrence is possibly too callow here, even to play a minor like Billy the Kid, but then the script is schematic and largely romanticises his story. (Just a few years later, with more roles under his belt, he was more compelling in a similar part in Garringo.) Fausto Tozzi, by contrast, oozes gravitas in the few major scenes he has but, of course, he was a more experienced performer. The film needed more of an even split between Billy and Pat Garrett - yes, just the way Sam Peckinpah later realised it.

Difficult to judge the photography as I have the Something Weird release mentioned above. I’ll repeat the refrain: “If only somebody would release this on DVD”…

(chuck connors brother) #6

The story is interesting at first, didn’t really enjoy where it ended up, halfway through to the end. I really liked the opening and the transition into the opening credits though.

(Phil H) #7

Not an historically accurate telling of the Billy and Pat story by a long shot of course but I was actually surprised by how many real elements and factual characters were included considering the usual eurowestern tradition in such things.

I have come to like PLL more and more over the years and I can’t think of a spaghetti actor better suited to the role. Buchs’ direction is fine if uninspired but the film as a whole suffers from Billy’s character really not being allowed enough depth and his relationship with Garrett not developed enough. Entertaining enough though.

(Bluntwolf) #8

Back to back Julio Buchs movies for me this weekend. After Mestizo it was this one last night.

I’d like to quote Thomas Weisser 'cause he’s not too wrong again:

"The tired story of Pat Garret (Fausto Tozzi) and Billy the Kid (Peter Lee Lawrence) is told yet again, but with many altered historical facts including Pat Garret’s inability to shoot his friend in the showdown. Instead, in this Spaghetti-Western version, William Bonney (alias Billy the Kid) is gunned down by his arch enemy (and former friend) Mark Liston (Luis Prendes).
Billy the Kid is flaunted as a golden haired martyr who only kills people in self defense, when no other solution is possible. However, in an unusual glimpse of truth, the film does touch on Billy’s rumored unhealthy “love” for his mother (an Oedipal complex usually deleted from most “Billy the Kid” movies). Other than this rather tawdry segment, the action is humdrum and grossly inaccurate.
After the film met initial box office resistance, Anglo distributors tried to spruce it up with the impish title For a Few Bullets More . "

I’d say the movie is, as Mestizo, worth a look. I even liked it better than Mestizo 'cause it does have SW trademarks. I also like Karl Otto Hirenbach a lot, even though here he’s not as good as in most of his later movies.

The SWV version has a nice Grindhouse-feel to it :wink: !

(Stanton) #9

That’s again wrong, At least in the middle parts he enjoys it killing people, and he starts the shootings.

(Chris_Casey) #10

I actually like this film.
It isn’t spectacular, but it is overall nicely done. I also love the musical score!
I’d give this one a 3 star rating, easily.

(Bluntwolf) #11

That’s why I wrote “he’s not too wrong” :wink:

(tomobea) #12

I`v got a 97 min version of this film in Spanish (my English version is 85 min) is the Spanish version the longest
there is???

(Stanton) #13

This seems to be the uncut version which runs theatrically 101 min.

(ENNIOO) #14

Cultcine have a 101min version with english audio:

(chuck connors brother) #15

Didn’t Jerksi release a remastered version 2 years ago?

(ENNIOO) #16

Yes he did, do not know the running time though.

(tomobea) #17

The Runningtime is nearly 82 minutes (Jerksi Version)

(Chris_Casey) #18

As I mentioned before, I like this movie (mostly for the score).
But, every time I watch it I have to laugh at the name they have on the sign as Garrett rides into town at the beginning of the film.
In reality, the name of the town where Garrett reportedly shot Billy the Kid is Fort Sumner. In this film, the sign reads Fort Summer!
I guess the Spanish or Italian folks doing the “historical” research thought Sumner must have been a misprint and decided they would fix that error for their film! :smiley:

(Stanton) #19

Ha ha, SW at their best :wink:

(scherpschutter) #20

Watched this one today.

I had avoided it so far because I didn’t expect much of it (and people here weren’t very enthousiastic), but then a few people on facebook told me i should watch and review it. They were right. Of course this is not a classic, and it takes quite a few liberties with history (but most movies about The Kid do), but overall it’s well-done and PLL is at least an actor who looks (and was) young enough to play Billy (he was 23 while Billy most probably was 21 when he was killed)