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13606  Films of Sergio Leone / Once Upon A Time In The West / Re:Thoughts on Cheyenne on: July 21, 2004, 01:35:44 AM
It's true that Cheyenne is the most interesting character in that there are so many sides to him. However, I don't really see him developing over the course of the film. Our understanding of him deepens as more is revealed about him, but it is our understanding that changes, not Cheyenne.

BTW, one way that Cheyenne sometimes operates in the film is like a Chorus figure, commenting on the action and helping the audience with some of the plot points. I think this is somewhat unique in Leone, whose characters are usually much more taciturn.
13607  Films of Sergio Leone / Once Upon A Time In The West / Re:The number three! on: July 21, 2004, 01:28:52 AM
Still, as Groggy points out, there are actually 4 people in the scene, and all of them get shot (that last is a really great observation). This scene works really well, by the way, as a transition from three-ness to four-ness (if you will). Given the idea that the 3 gunfighters sort of represent Old School westerns, by having them killed off Leone might be signalling that there's a new game in town.......
13608  Films of Sergio Leone / The Good, The Bad and The Ugly / Re:The gold and the epilogue. on: July 21, 2004, 01:21:06 AM
That article talks a lot about the half dollars, but beyond a brief mention, what does it actually say about the gold $20.00 coins? Even if the mint never struck any gold coins except with union dyes, might those not still be considered "confederate gold coins"? I'll bet all coinage before sescession was still considered legal tender within the CSA.....
13609  Films of Sergio Leone / Once Upon A Time In The West / Re:analysis on jill on: July 20, 2004, 01:18:35 AM

jill's former "job" came in handy, in that she seduces frank, deluding him into thinking he actually could become a business man, thus giving harmonica and cheyenne time to think of a way to come up with obtaining the money needed to get that land.  cheyenne prostutes himself for jill in order to earn the money needed to obtain mcbain's land.

I'm finding it hard to believe we've seen the same movie. Jill "seduces" Frank? Rather, she yields to him, under threat of death. Later she tries to sell out because it is the easiest thing for her to do. She doesn't plan, she doesn't strive, she goes with the flow. She is essentially passive throughout the movie. Then, at the end, she shows she's changed by actually taking the initiative: she gives the boys a drink. At that moment, she transforms from archetypal whore to archetypal mother. It was a heck of a ride, but she got to the end in one piece.  
13610  General Information / General Discussion / Re:Meeting Leone. on: July 16, 2004, 10:54:48 PM
I was a young teenager, in DUBLIN, when  my uncle (a taxi-driver) got the job of driving SERGIO and JAMES from hotel to film site(s), mainly TONERS BAR in Baggot Street (famous shoot-out in slo-mo) and the driving sequence in the Wicklow mountains, during a filmed segment for A FISTFUL OF DYNAMITE!
Question to all: are these the only two Irish locations used in AFOD? And where exactly are the Wicklow mountains?
13611  Films of Sergio Leone / Once Upon A Time In The West / Re:analysis on jill on: July 16, 2004, 10:46:11 PM
Djimbo has some good points (especially the one about Jill being "incredibly hot"). Now here is my take:

Jill is a stock character, "the hooker with a heart of gold," as we used to say, also known as "the tart with a heart."

All the characters in OUATITW are well-known types: the implacable avenger, the black-hearted nemesis, the corrupt tycoon (to list other examples). We recognize such types from the many examples we've seen of them in film and literature.

The psychology of such characters is less important to an audience than the need for those characters to fulfill their respective roles. Tarts need to be tarty, avengers need to avenge. Motives are little more than stage properties.

What is interesting about Leone's use of these different types is the unique way they interact. To take one example (since the subject is Jill), Harmonica's "courtship" of Jill: his midnight "serenade" recieves gunshots in reply; next morning, Harmonica seems on the verge of ravishing Jill when in fact he is only altering her clothing to make her a fit decoy; later, he enters her bathing chamber, but instead of seducing her he fires out windows to kill Frank's men. In this way, Harmonica, even while appearing to fulfill his role as suitor, is disqualified as a potential mate. He has "something to do with death," as do all his encounters with Jill. There is, then, no basis on which the two can build a life together (as Cheyenne observes), so they must go their separate ways.

Still, genre conventions have been satisfied: the avenger has exacted his revenge, the hooker has been redeemed by her love for the hero. We get our money's worth.
13612  Films of Sergio Leone / For a Few Dollars More / Re:Questions that scream out for an answer on: July 15, 2004, 05:09:21 PM
Thank you, CJ, you've just given me an idea for a great movie script.....
13613  Films of Sergio Leone / Once Upon A Time In The West / Re:About Jill McBein and the movie rythm on: July 07, 2004, 11:33:26 PM
Jill is only the "central" character of the movie in the same way that Helen is the central character of the Iliad. Both are trophies to be fought over, and beyond this, both function as emblems of the civilizations they help to found. The central character of OUATITW, as the term is usually understood, however, has to be Harmonica (as Achilles is the central character of the Iliad). Central characters are the ones who drive the plot.
13614  Films of Sergio Leone / The Good, The Bad and The Ugly / Re:Why does Blondie leave Tuco in the desert? on: July 07, 2004, 11:09:53 PM
I think you guys are neglecting the fact that Tuco had previously threatened Blondie ("If you miss, you'd better miss well....") and was just then complaining about the fact that Blondie had *in fact* missed on the second hanging. Blondie knows Tuco is dangerous and at some point he's going to doublecross him (and he may not worry about maximizing income before he does it). So Blondie is playing it safe by beating Tuco to the draw (as always). And he does give Tuco a sporting chance, although I'm sure he regrets it later.
13615  Films of Sergio Leone / The Good, The Bad and The Ugly / Re:I can watch GBU over & over... on: July 04, 2004, 05:52:12 PM
To answer your questions in order:

Yes, it is.


Yes, there are.
13616  Films of Sergio Leone / The Good, The Bad and The Ugly / Re:GBU DVD Easter Eggs on: July 01, 2004, 09:21:01 PM
So, then, the R2 Easter Eggs contain different material from those on the R1 release?
13617  Films of Sergio Leone / Once Upon A Time In The West / Re:So Who Buries Frank? on: July 01, 2004, 12:44:48 AM
I'm with Vinnie on this one. Nobody buries Angel Eyes, either, although he does conveniently fall into an open grave.....
13618  Films of Sergio Leone / The Good, The Bad and The Ugly / Re:The gold and the epilogue. on: June 30, 2004, 06:47:43 PM
So, Blondie might have continued on to Bolivia or someplace safer. Or maybe he caught a boat to Europe. Anyway, he had a lot of options (men with $100,000 always do) and I think he would have tried several hundred of them before opting to melt down the gold. What does melting the gold really do for him, anyway? He still has to protect it from those who would take it from him by force.

I think the real question is: what would Tuco do with *his* $100,000? And the answer to me is obvious: he would immediately use it to try to get Blondie's $100,000. Tuco tracked Blondie before, and successfully, and that was only for revenge. Revenge can be, no doubt, an exquisite pleasure, but it can't compare with the ecstacy of gold.
13619  Films of Sergio Leone / The Good, The Bad and The Ugly / The New Mexico Campaign on: June 30, 2004, 05:58:47 PM
One question that inevitably arises when considering the Civil War background of GBU is how much actual history needs to be taken into account. The mention of both Sibley and Canby in the film indicates that Leone wanted to reference at least some elements of the New Mexico campaign. No doubt we are right to limit the events of GBU to Feb. 1862 through April 1862, the dates of Sibley's expedition. But what else? Sad Hill can't represent any actual graveyard: only 280 men died in the campaign, and Sad Hill seems to hold several thousand. There was no battle for a bridge over a river, either (and what New Mexican river would that be, anyhow?), so perhaps much of the action must be considered metaphorical or symbolic. But how can we determine when things should be taken literally, and when not?
13620  Films of Sergio Leone / The Good, The Bad and The Ugly / Re:How do Angel Eyes and Tuco know each other on: June 30, 2004, 05:56:35 PM
One more thing to consider: at Tuco's second "hanging," Angel Eyes tells a woman onlooker that men with ropes around their necks don't always hang. Then he mentions that Tuco has a guardian angel, in fact, a golden-haired one. Obviously, Angel Eyes knows all about their con: but how? Since they only began pulling it after they met, Angel Eyes must have witnessed the routine somewhere during the course of the events depicted in the film. The only way to account for this, it seems to me, is with a missing scene.....
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