THE RELENTLESS FOUR (1965), starring ‘Batman’… in a pink shirt.
Well, I did actually get to sit down and watch the film, on ‘Movies4Men’, this afternoon; albeit, with an ‘intermission’ half-way through, because prune-brained ‘cold-callers’ rang my door-bell!
As an early example of ‘Spaghetti’, I actually enjoyed it, and can agree with practically all the comments that have already been made on the topic. Like Phil H, I don’t mind both the early ‘Americanised’ examples, and, also, the later down-right dirty ones, that we’ve all come to love.
Because I love the ‘Spaghetti’ genre, I’ve always found it necessary to concentrate not only on the ‘dirty, traditional gems’, but also the Italian/Spanish/German, early Genesis at adopting what was, in essence, an ‘American Institution’.
For the film companies, this was a learning curve, and one which they were tentatively still exploring.
The process of viewing the early ‘attempts’, and then comparing them to the later ones, is a process that I’d compare to watching a new-born baby grown into adolescence, and then adult-hood.
As for ‘The Relentless Four’…I was surprised that there were NO screen credits, of any kind - either at the beginning of the film, or, at the end. Also, there was no opening theme.
It was a great shame that Adam West did not dub his own voice; but, then again, neither did James Coburn, in ‘A Reason To Live, A Reason To Die’.
It was also strange to see the ‘town’ action situated at ‘Mini Hollywood’, in Almeria (Southern Spain); and yet, all the other scenes were filmed in Northern Spain. However, this is something that we have come to accept, as ‘Spag’ fans.
It didn’t bother me that Adam West was starring as the lead…I didn’t, surprisingly, associate him with ‘Batman’. After all, he didn’t even begin to play the role of the ‘Caped Crusader’ until a year after this film.
As for Adam West’s attire in ‘Relentless Four’…a white hat, and pink shirt…make of that as you will. I believe that someone, somewhere, made a comment that it could be a nod to homosexuality…
Personally, I’d say that West was wearing the eye-catching pink shirt, and white hat, because it was important (for the plot), that his character ‘stand-out’ from the crowd. Bear in mind, that during the film, he is knocked unconscious, a man is murdered, and the real killer has purposely worn the same pink shirt and white hat, so as to implicate Adam West in the murder…a ‘frame-up’…
However, that’s just my take on it.
All in all, ‘The Relentless Four’ is an enjoyable ‘early’ Spaghetti.