What's not to like about SW's?


(Col. Douglas Mortimer) #1

We all love Spaghetti Westerns. Its the reason why we are on this board. We all have similar reasons for why we like SW’s as well. Perhaps its the gratuitious violence and action scenes, cool characters, musical score, lack of mushy sentimentality (my favorite), the moral ambiguity and many other reasons why we like SW’s.

But as much as I love SW"s I admit that there are some aspects of the SW that leaves something to be desired. And I was wondering if others on this board also have beefs about there favourite movie genre. I do want to sound like a negative person, and this is not meant to be a SW bashing thread. Just a place where we can discuss some of the shortcomings of SW’s and aspects of the genre we are not too crazy about.

So here it goes…I’ll start off with a couple of mine.

  1. Lack of story continuity between movies that are supposed to be part of a series. For example Clint Eastwood essentially plays 3 different characters in dollars trilogy. In Trinity 1, they have different fathers, but in TRinity 2 they have the same father, Pistol for Ringo and Return of Ringo have nothing to do with each other etc…

  2. Adding the name Sartana, Sabata, Django etc…to a movie title in order to attract movie goers, even though the movie may not have anything to do with the character. For example Django Kill.

  3. Sometimes unauthentic portrayals of native americans

Anybody think of any more?


(Tom B.) #2

Geographical locations are quiet often incorrect. The use of Minnesota in Minnesota Clay as the name of a western character is really funny to us American gringos. The mispelling of Marshal, Sheriff and Wells Fargo is unforgivable when they have an American actor in the cast. The ridiculous badges that most law enforcement officials in SWs use is also laughable. Their are quite a few films with pistols and rifles that were not invented yet in the year the film is trying to portray (Machine guns for example or repeating rifles etc.). Eastern Indian tribe clothing is often worn by western Indians in the films. The use of European vultures in the SWs is always good for a laugh.


(Bill san Antonio) #3

I’d say that thing that irritates me most is the unimaginative plots in many sw’s: hero looking for revenge because his family or wife has been murdered, banker or landbaron who is trying to grab all the land from the poor farmers, corrupted sherrif, stolen gold shipment and the band of Mexican bandits etc.

Of course I can’t accuse Italians for lack of imagination, they have done the most bizarre and strange westerns there is too but some of those b-grade westerns are pretty boring in all their similarity.


(Chris_Casey) #4

That pretty much covers it, amigo Tom!

Regarding the Minnesota Clay moniker…they could have called him Boston Bob or Philapdelphia Frank and gotten the same results! Heh heh!

However, regarding the geography…there are a few SW’s that have more geographical accuracy than a lot of American Westerns.
But, then again…there are some glarring examples of inaccuracy in SW’s such as the map that Tony Anthony uses in BLINDMAN clearly shows Oklahoma which wasn’t known as Oklahoma until much later. A lot of Maps in SW’s are 20th Century maps showing Oklahoma as a State when in the period that the film is supposed to be taking place the maps would have read Indian Territory, instead. But, to be honest, you see this kind of stuff in a lot of American Westerns of the 40’s and 50’s, too.

And the same goes for weaponry, the Italians weren’t the only ones to get the wrong guns for the wrong time period. Hollywood used to love to give Civil War era gunmen 1873 model Colt 45’s, all the time! :slight_smile:

But, you are dead on regarding the misspellings, the badges, and the Plains Indians outfits worn by actors that are supposed to be Navajos or Apaches.


(The Halitosis Kid) #5

Err… nope, can’t really think of anything I don’t like about Spaghetti Westerns. :wink:


(scherpschutter) #6

I don’t like the sillyness that crept into the genre, or some of the subgenres. ‘Se incontri Sartana, prega per la tua morte/If you meet Sartana, pray for your death’ was a fine movie; it’s OK to satirize a tiring genre (and the SW was tiring a bit at the time). But I don’t like the shooting sewing-machines and organs that came later. The same goes for the Trinità/Trinity movies: the first one or two were straightforward comedies, nice and funny, but it soon went out of hand, not only with Hill/Spencer but with all comedy SWs. I think even the more serious, ‘die hard’ spaghetti’s started to suffer from this at a certain moment: gunmen started shooting s incredibly fast (and so many times in a row) with a six-shooter that it all became a bit silly.


(Col. Douglas Mortimer) #7

How about the mysterious stranger who goes into town and raises hell between two opposing factions. How many times has that one been done to death? haha


(Tom_R) #8

Very true! And how many times is it alluded that the stranger is some kind of spirit back from the dead.


(AceHigh) #9

I agree with The Halitosis Kid; can’t think of anything I don’t like about the spag western


(davidf) #10

the so called “comedy” spaghetti westerns >:(


(Tigrero) #11

Some of them are quite good IMO. Depends on your mood. Sometimes I feel like something mean and moody and dark. Other times I just want to sit down for a while and be entertained. The Rev just wants to be mean and moody all the time but what the fuck, he can do stuff me and you dream of. I just like to sit back and have a laugh at everything but what a fuckin’ under-achiever I am.
I think it’s too easy for all of us to have our opinion on everything but at the end of the day I gotta go with the Halitosis Kid

aint too much wrong with any Spag cos it’s why we are all here…if they were all great or if they were all shit we would not have so much to agree on or disagree on…and if we or they were all the same life would be boring. Cliched but true.


(ENNIOO) #12

He sure does…


(Col. Douglas Mortimer) #13

Wow. Talk about a thread coming back from the dead. Hehe

I guess another complaint I have about SW’s is that every movie features mexican as the bad guys. Only to have a Gringo save the day. Isn’t this kind of racist?

Django Last Killer was the only SW I can think of that had it reversed…A mexican good guy killing Gringo bad guys. But then again, George Eastman was the tallest mexican I’ve ever seen. haha


(korano) #14

My main problem with some soaghettis is the lack of quality editing in some of the action scenes. I guy shoots a gun and a minute later he falls. Exageration sure. Another poor editing technique is the ambushes in some spaghettis. All you see is a bunch of people firing and then a pan to a bunch of people falling. Paticularily in forgotten pistolero. Bullet for Sandoval is a great example of great action sequences. There is more aiming involved. It is refreshing to see the character aim instead of just fan his gun 40 times and 60 people fall. It adds more tension to see them aim. And is a lot more satisfying and cool. Makesthe action more action packed I should say. Beyond the Law also gets an honorable mention from me in the action scene editing.

Another reason not to likethem is most of them have terrible dialogue. Face to Face has good dialogue. So does Mannaj but the english dub of django is laughable and cheesy. Detracts from the coolness of the film. I have yet to watch it in full italian but it is far more impressive than the english dub. Nero was 22 or something at the time. The english dub makes him sound 55! Same in Reason to Live… Comin’ at Ya also has terrible dialogue. Deadwood is probably the best example of great dialogue anywhere. I know what your thinkin’ but if you look beyond all the profanity, it is very beautiful and intricit dialogue.


(Silence) #15

Only thing I can think of is the treat of women, mexicans, native americans and triggers to Colt 45.s ;). The B-film filming and all mistakes are fine with me, it’s part of the genre ;). By the way most Zapata Westerns are nice to mexicans as they are the good guys.


(autephex) #16

i dont mind bad editing or poor production values, it just adds to the entertainment…

the only thing i dislike about spaghettis, is when they are boring

i hate it when a spaghetti is boring and dragging on, leaving me checking the clock

i’d much rather have some action which is edited poorly, than some overlong plot/character development that isn’t going anywhere and far from interesting


(Stanton) #17

But action scenes can also become very boring (like in Apocalypse Joe and many others)


(autephex) #18

that is true, but i still think that no-action-boring is worse than action-boring… don’t get me wrong, I have no problem with plot/character development if its worth watching… but there are many times in spaghettis where i could just care less


(Stanton) #19

Of course, but I wouldn’t make a difference between how or with what I’m bored. Boring is boring no matter why.

Hmm, but when I think about it, it’s a sort of art to bore people with straight action scenes.


(Silence) #20

Agree!

I think it was like this with Kill Them All And Come Back Alone. Action all the time but I still found it boring.