Sergio Leone Web Board

Films of Sergio Leone => The Good, The Bad and The Ugly => Topic started by: Dirty Rat on December 30, 2011, 09:51:25 AM



Title: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: Dirty Rat on December 30, 2011, 09:51:25 AM
As simple as the subject title says.....
I know there are some "old codgers" ( :D) around here that saw it when it came out in the theatres back in the day so let's get 'em listed.

Mine was a home recording here in the UK in 1986 or '87.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: cigar joe on December 30, 2011, 12:44:58 PM
I saw it on Times Square in January 1968  O0 O0 O0


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: mike siegel on December 30, 2011, 02:23:41 PM
We had a film club at high school, saw it first (pan-scan) on 16mm in 1981. Made a huge impact nevertheless, I was young and there was
no homevideo yet.
Took me 30 years to see it on 35mm / Scope: this year, again a film club I made the program for. But this time in a decent cinema.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: titoli on December 30, 2011, 03:36:42 PM
I couldn't watch it in the 60's because minors under 14 weren't admitted to vision (probably only because of the final "hijo de puta") so I watched it in late summer 1975 or 1974 in a cinema in a sea resort near Rome CJ knows well. Liked it but wasn't much impressed because my favourite Leone was and still is FFDM. And nothing stayed in my mind afterwards. Re-saw it in the late '80's on first italian tv programming of L.'s movies and still wasn't that much impressed at least by even the most famous sequences which I started to focalize after I joined this board. This is the only L.'s western I just saw once in a theatre, the other ones having seen at least 5 times each.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: titoli on December 30, 2011, 03:37:39 PM
But is this the right board? :o


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: Dirty Rat on December 30, 2011, 09:27:04 PM
Sorry, wrong board! How can I move it, or does a moderator have to do it?


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: Jordan Krug on December 31, 2011, 08:54:52 AM
I was about 12, and I had seen fod and fafdm, but didn't realize there was a third one (these were all pan/scan vhs) Here's where it gets weird...I didn't like it at all, thought it was really slow, and was really disappointed. Gave it a chance again in my late teens and was blown away. Now it's my favorite of the 3 (and my favorite Leone film). I've seen the "restored" version in the theatre once when it premiered 5 or 6 years ago...I still prefer the cut without the italian additions, but I'm happy that Italian footage exists, I was so excited to watch it when it first came out as deleted scenes on DVD.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: Cusser on December 31, 2011, 11:05:49 AM
1st Time: June 14, 1968.  I was 15. We had heard the Montenegro music on the radio (was #2 for one week, Mrs. Robinson was #1).  We knew who Clint Eastwood was (from Rawhide), and liked westerns.  We were wondering why most of the names in the titles were Italians.  We had seen no trailers or advertisements.  The second feature was "The Party" where interestingly, a bridge was blown up by accident when no cameras were rolling.

2nd Time: June 15, 1968.

Fistful of Dollars/For a Few Dollars More double feature 1969.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: Dirty Rat on December 31, 2011, 01:04:08 PM
I was 9 and my Dad taped it very late one night, probably to test out our new vhs player.
I was searching through things that they had receorded with excitement (it was pretty new back then and all a bit of a novelty) and I stumbled across the last scene of the GBU. The final schootout felt like a film in itself to me and I kept on rewinding it back (in vision) to the beginning of that scene as I was too scared to rewind all the way back to the start of the film. Anyway after a few weeks of watching that every night after school I did rewind it back to the begninning and watching it all. Probably in several sittings though. I became obsessed with it. People would come round and I would be watching it - and they knew that I would be - again!

I didn't know about the extra scenes until I saw it on TV one night. Then I got really excited about the '04 release. I had no knowledge of the previous DVD with the cut scenes as extras. I really dislike the new gun shots etc, etc and wish that I could get hold of the uncut DVD with the extra scenes but the couple of times that I since tried to order it the sellers kept on sending me a different versions than what was actually listed. 25 years later, I'm still freaking obsessed.....!


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: stanton on December 31, 2011, 01:10:33 PM
We had a film club at high school, saw it first (pan-scan) on 16mm in 1981. Made a huge impact nevertheless, I was young and there was
no homevideo yet.

There was. It was the year I bought my first VRC. and GBU was released that year and in great fullscreen. Fuck, it looked terrible, but it was my first chance to watch it, and it was immediately clear that GBU was by far the best of the trilogy. I had already viewed the other 2 that year on VHS (at least in something around 1,70:1) and had seen in the late 70s My Name Is Nobody (which wasn't funny enough then) and OuTW (which was a bore then) in the theatres. I rewatched Nobody that year on VHS and loved it too.
 

I had also re-watched OUTW again in the theatre, maybe a year earlier, after I had seen the end of the McBain scene on TV in a Fonda portrait, and suddenly thought that it was great, and it was, and still is.

But sadly I never managed to see the Dollar trilogy in a cinema, but OUTW about 10 - 15 times.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: Groggy on December 31, 2011, 02:02:06 PM
TNT and TBS used to show it constantly, back when they were decent channels. I first saw it around '98 or '99 but it didn't make much impression. Years later and sat down and watched the whole thing, and loved it.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: titoli on December 31, 2011, 03:17:21 PM
1st Time: June 14, 1968.  I was 15. We had heard the Montenegro music on the radio (was #2 for one week, Mrs. Robinson was #1).  We knew who Clint Eastwood was (from Rawhide), and liked westerns.  We were wondering why most of the names in the titles were Italians.  We had seen no trailers or advertisements.  The second feature was "The Party" where interestingly, a bridge was blown up by accident when no cameras were rolling.

2nd Time: June 15, 1968.

Fistful of Dollars/For a Few Dollars More double feature 1969.

You forgot to mention the place. >:(

Anyway I assume that it was the Montenegro's tune which brought you to the cinema. Did you realize when you watched the movie that it had a different version from Montenegro's? And, at the time, what of the two you thought it was better?

Now, it is strange that I don't remember the title song being much of a hit over here, at least as Fistful was. Probably I am wrong but I don't think that, not counting the last ten years, I heard it on the radio more than a handful of times. And even the title tune didn't register with me exactly as the movie didn't.




Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: drinkanddestroy on December 31, 2011, 04:15:38 PM
3 years ago, during the second year of law school, in my dorm, on my laptop, rented from iTunes  :)

I'd first heard about the movie cuz I am a huge Metallica fan, and they famously walk out to "The Ecstacy of Gold" at the beginning of every concert. So I figured eventually I'd have to see the movie. Then there was once a reference to the movie on a Seinfeld episode (I wanna say it was "The Strike," but I am not 100% sure), and I am also a huge Seinfeld fan. (Yeah, my loves in life are Metallica, Seinfeld, the Yankees, and now Leone  :))

I used to always rent movies off iTunes (before I realized that renting dvd's from Netflix was a far better way of doing things). So at one point, I must have been in need of a movie to watch, and decided to finally rent GBU.

Up to that point, I had only seen one Western in my life: The Quick and the Dead, which I hated so much, I swore I'd never see a Western again! I did not even know that GBU was a Western before I started watching it; if I had, I'd probably not have even bothered to watch it. Anyway, once I started watching and realized it was a Western, I was upset, but decided to watch it anyway, cuz I'd already rented it.

Even though it was only 3 years ago, let's just say my taste in movies has changed drastically since then. At that time, I'm sitting there watching the first half, and I  just COULD NOT STAND the movie. I felt that it just dragged on and on and on. I seriously considered not even finishing it, but decided to do so (THANK GOD FOR THAT!) Once Blondie and Tuco left the Mission San Antonio, when the movie really picked up, I just started loving it! (I was just puzzled why it took forever for Ecstasy of Gold -- the very thing that interested me in the movie, to come on!)

Needless to say, by the time the movie was over, I was LOVING it, and like all of Leone's movies, it's among my all-time faves: (the whole thing, not just the second half!)  So when it was over and I wanted to find out some more info on it, I looked it up on Wikipedia, and it said it was part of a trilogy directed by the same guy named Leone, and decided to give the other 2 a shot as well. The rest is history. Been immersing myself in Leone ever since  :)


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: mike siegel on December 31, 2011, 05:40:21 PM
There was. It was the year I bought my first VRC.

But sadly I never managed to see the Dollar trilogy in a cinema, but OUTW about 10 - 15 times.

Yes, there was, rich boy :)
We couldn't afford one that early, 'tapes being expensive too (I remember when my buddy bought three HAMMER films in London, THORN-EMI VHS, for about 80 or 100 pounds each. That first VHS edition from Warner Home was great, I still have some of those 'glass boxes' for sentimental reasons: SEARCHERS, WILD BUNCH, GBU, WOODSTOCK, REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE ... those were among the first films released on Video in 1980 / 1981 ...
DOLLAR: the first time I saw FOD in a theatre in 1980 was really memorable (and weird): In our cinema we had Turkish, Greek and Italian screenings in those days (Mercedes City here, as many factory workers as population). The Italian 'distributor always came with the 35mm print and some photo-bustas I used for decorating the lobby / display windows. I tried to talk him into giving me some bustas (first release), but he had only a few he really needed for travelling around Germany along with the print.  Anyway, that afternoon I saw FOD for the very first time, in Italian language (uncut too of course) along with 221 Italians, me being the only one who didn't understand the dialogue. Well, I didn't need to really :) What an experience..


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: drinkanddestroy on December 31, 2011, 06:15:16 PM
well, now that some of you guys are discussing when you saw the first Dollars films, I'll discuss that too. (Perhaps the title should be changed to s/t like "First Viewing of each film," and moved to the General Discussion Thread?)

so after I had seen GBU as I discussed in my previous post, I wanted to read more about the film, and went to Wikipedia, where it said this was the third in a trilogy of "Dollars" films. As I'd mentioned before, I had sworn to never see a Western after I had a terrible experience with my first Western (The Quick and the Dead), and only saw GBU cuz I didn't know it was a Western when I rented it! But I loved it so much, I decided to see the others in the trilogy.


So shortly after watching GBU, I rented FOD off iTunes as well. As soon as the opening theme started, I was really, really excited: I had loved the music from GBU so much, and now I was in for another awesome Morricone soundtrack! Unfortunately, I didn't love the movie nearly as much -- specifically, I had a very bad feeling about everyone dying, particularly the massacre of the Baxters. I mean, I know that Westerns are about shooting and dying, but in this movie, it was a sad, depressing town and everyone was massacred at the end -- not much of a life. So I had a very bad feeling about it all. And I started thinking, "I was correct to have sworn off Westerns after seeing The Quick and The Dead. Sure, I loved GBU, but now I had seen FOD and HATED it, so perhaps my initial feeling on Westerns was correct, and GBU was just a fluke.

But for some reason, I decided to watch FAFDM, just to complete the trilogy. Again, on my laptop, rented off iTunes. I fully expected to hate it as well, and if I had, I'd probably have never seen another Western. But I absolutely LOVED LOVED LOVED it. From that point on, I became a huge Leone fan, and saw all of his films, and then once I started reading Frayling's works and heard him discussing all these old Westerns that Leone was influenced by, I decided to start watching AW's as well, and I haven't stopped doing so since  :)

As I mentioned, the first time I watched GBU I hated the first half but loved the second half, (and therefore could say I loved the movie overall. But FAFDM I absolutely LOVED LOVED LOVED from beginning to end, the first time I saw it. For that reason -- though I prefer to think of all of Leone's movies as 6 beautiful movements of one great symphony, and never rank them individually -- FAFDM holds a certain special place in my heart  :)

The other 4 (FOD, and the Once Upon a Time "trilogy") I did not like the first time I saw 'em (OUATIA and DYS I didn't like much; FOD and OUATITW I absolutely HATED!)  I didn't like those 4 until the second time I saw 'em.

Needless to say, today I am totally obsessed with all of Leone's movies, and all of Frayling's works on them, which have helped me to appreciate the movies even more. I have seen all of Leone's movies numerous times, and experienced all of Frayling's orks on Leone -- ie. listened to all of his commentaries, read his books, listened to his podcasts, watched interviews etc. -- hundreds of times.

Until the moment I began watching Leone's movies, I wasn't a huge movie guy, and even when I did watch movies, I basically had a kid's standpoint: you know, mindless stupid shit from a very unsophisticated point of view, with zero interest in or understanding of direction, camera angles, or anything else that kids don't think about. Only when I started watching Leone's films and particularly when I began reading/listening to Frayling's discussions of them, did I get introduced to and become interested in the nuances of moviemaking, and transform from, so to speak, an average fan to a cineaste'. I am 27 years old, and I'd say that in the 3 years since I have started following Leone, I may have seen more movies than I did in my lifetime prior to that.

I was fortunate enough to tour the OUATIA locations with dj and cj a few months ago, and to see the movie on the big scree at Lincoln Center. It was the only time I have ever seen a Leone movie on the big screen. (Unfortunately, the movie itself was not a great experience, cuz at least one reel was pretty badly damaged, and the sound was sooooo low, I could barely hear anything. I kept running out to get popcorn!)

My to-do list has the following 4 things, when possible, and in no particular order:

a) see all of Leone's movies on the big screen
b) go to a speech/discussion with Christopher Frayling
c) go to a Morricone concert
d) tour all of Leone's film locations in Spain

There you have it; my last 3 years in a nutshell  :)


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: Lil Brutto on January 01, 2012, 01:25:38 AM
Best fuc$ing movie ever. Watched it in my uncle's lap in the early 80's when i was 7 or 8. Loved SL ever since.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: stanton on January 01, 2012, 07:06:32 AM
Yes, there was, rich boy :)
We couldn't afford one that early, 'tapes being expensive too (I remember when my buddy bought three HAMMER films in London, THORN-EMI VHS, for about 80 or 100 pounds each. That first VHS edition from Warner Home was great, I still have some of those 'glass boxes' for sentimental reasons: SEARCHERS, WILD BUNCH, GBU, WOODSTOCK, REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE ... those were among the first films released on Video in 1980 / 1981 ...
 

Ha, ha not that rich, it was my first money, and it was lot of money for me back then.

But I never bought VHS cassettes apart from a few ex-rentals when I had to pay only one D-Mark.
2 exceptions: I bought me in the mid-80s the UK VHS of The Wild Bunch and Major Dundee (both fullscreen) when they were down to about 50 or 60 D-Mark, but Bunch was the same version as released in Germany and Dundee was only slightly longer. Not the 135 min version I had hoped for.
TV recordings looked much better than the VHS Tapes and were at least in the compromise aspect ratio of 1,85:1 .

Funny thing about TWB. German version runs only 126 min, which was stated also on the back cover of the rental VHS. When I bought the UK VHS I was still thinking that I had always watched only the 126 min version, even if I did not knew what the hell was missing except for the flashback with the woman Pike loved. But the German VHS contained nearly the complete version, only that flashback was missing and strangely one min just after the missing flashback was in English. So I was a bit disappointed that the UK VHS also had cut the fllashback out. Later I watched also the German 126 version, and know I could see for the first time the full image of most of the film. And in the early 90s the uncut version was on TV in 1,85:1. Seems like a big puzzle. But now it is complete


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: mike siegel on January 01, 2012, 09:07:47 AM
:But now it is complete


Yes, don't we like it?

As much as I understand that bitching about certain DVDs / blu-rays were  they messed up certain things (GBU sound F/X for instance);
we still live in paradise compared to the 80s & early 90s.
BUNCH played in 1969 uncut in Germany in 35mm and 70mm and was recut to 126 min. for the 1975 re-release. PRO7 screened the uncut version in 1990 (or 1991) because of the Kirch archive I suppose. That often made masters based on archive copies. Is the complete German dubbed version on the Warner DVD ? Never watched it in German again. ..
(as for the int. VHS tapes - they were always a mess, length-wise & qualitiy-wise, until 1996)


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: Cusser on January 01, 2012, 09:09:06 AM
1st Time: June 14, 1968.  I was 15. We had heard the Montenegro music on the radio (was #2 for one week, Mrs. Robinson was #1).  We knew who Clint Eastwood was (from Rawhide), and liked westerns.  We were wondering why most of the names in the titles were Italians.  We had seen no trailers or advertisements.  The second feature was "The Party" where interestingly, a bridge was blown up by accident when no cameras were rolling.

2nd Time: June 15, 1968.

Fistful of Dollars/For a Few Dollars More double feature 1969.

You forgot to mention the place. >:(

Scottsdale, Arizona. Camelback Theater, Scottsdale Rd. & Camelback (no longer there).  Afternoon show.  My brother drove us, he was 16.


Anyway I assume that it was the Montenegro's tune which brought you to the cinema. Did you realize when you watched the movie that it had a different version from Montenegro's? And, at the time, what of the two you thought it was better?

Now, it is strange that I don't remember the title song being much of a hit over here, at least as Fistful was. Probably I am wrong but I don't think that, not counting the last ten years, I heard it on the radio more than a handful of times. And even the title tune didn't register with me exactly as the movie didn't.


Absolutely noticed that the Morricone music was tons better, and I still feel GBU is the absolute BEST FILM EVER for use of music.  Had it not been foreign-made, likely could've, and should've won best film score.  Apparently one has to register and pay to be considered, and GBU was once again eligible in 2004 with restored version, but doubt anyone thought to try.  Even The Academy dropped the ball with Morricone award, should've played the entire Ecstacy of Gold sequence on big screen, maybe even the final gunfight.  Now, that would've been memorable.  Big disappointment for me to find GBU soundtrack album was missing so much, really glad when European CDs with expanded tracks, audible Story of a Soldier came out.  Also bootleg CDs had other stuff as well.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: stanton on January 01, 2012, 09:13:40 AM
:But now it is complete


Yes, don't we like it?

As much as I understand that bitching about certain DVDs / blu-rays were  they messed up certain things (GBU sound F/X for instance);
we still live in paradise compared to the 80s & early 90s.
BUNCH played in 1969 uncut in Germany in 35mm and 70mm and was recut to 126 min. for the 1975 re-release.



Are you sure? All my informations say that TWB was already cut in 69, but obviously after the dubbing was made. All sources only mention the cut version.

The DVD has indeed the complete German dub.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: titoli on January 01, 2012, 10:51:58 PM
It was summer 1974 I saw it, judging by the re-releases dates at IMDB. Ladispoli; Roma. Cinema Nuova Arena, only night show. I also have finally relized it was 1969, first re-release, that I first heard about the movie.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: Smokey on January 02, 2012, 06:45:14 AM
I saw it when it first came out. I had seen FOD and FAFDM by then and was eagerly awating GBU. At our local theater they had a midnight sneak preview
for the first showing in our area. That's the one I saw and I wasn't dissapointed.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: cigar joe on January 02, 2012, 03:35:18 PM
I saw it when it first came out. I had seen FOD and FAFDM by then and was eagerly awating GBU. At our local theater they had a midnight sneak preview
for the first showing in our area. That's the one I saw and I wasn't dissapointed.

Hi Smokey welcome aboard, any where was this at location wise.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: Smokey on January 02, 2012, 06:07:03 PM
Hi Joe. Peoria Illinois. I think the old Palace theater but I could be wrong on that. Been a long time ago.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: sargatanas on January 06, 2012, 12:31:28 PM
i took my special lady friend a topless go-go girl at a club i was playing in cocoa in '67
we walked in on the tuco beating scene. the music mixed w/ the violence floored me.
the massive theater was jam packed to the gills. the audience was glued to the screen


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: emmo26 on February 09, 2012, 04:01:17 PM
For me it was always on the late night TV circuit, I think it was the TV channels trying to fill up their late night tv schedules...Saw it first back in the mid 80's as a kid and thought that was cool...Then when saw again on tv got a few things more out of the storyline that I missed before.  About time in 90's   I was then getting the video and the dvd releases with deleted scenes I was truly blown away with the masterpiece and completly obessed with the film.  Plus I wanted to learn more, especially about the civil war back then.


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: emmo26 on February 10, 2012, 02:42:16 AM
This thread should be stuck on top.......imo


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: johnk on February 27, 2012, 10:24:26 AM
I saw it on Times Square in January 1968  O0 O0 O0
I saw it early 1968 Apollo Cinema Victoria UK


Title: Re: First Viewing of GBU
Post by: Dirty Rat on February 28, 2012, 01:35:22 AM
Speaking of special ladies, I took my now wife to go and see a showing of the uncut version at FACT in Liverpool back in 2008 (or '07?) and she really enjoyed it. She has great taste anyway (well, obviously!) and prior to going, one of her friends was taking the p1ss saying what a loyal girlfriend she was going to see a boring old cowboy film.
Some people just don't get it.

There were no topless birds involved that night though.......