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Author Topic: Il mercenario aka The Mercenary/A Professional Gun (1968)  (Read 54045 times)
Banjo
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« Reply #30 on: February 25, 2006, 08:08:08 AM »

The storyline flows better in Mercenary and is less bogged down with the (Xantos) political waffle in Companeros and the set pieces are more numerous and superior-apart from the head in the sand scene which is better handled in Companeros.Morricones music is preferable and alot more varied in Mercenary and Jack Palances performance as Curly is the best i've seen him in.Finally i'd say the general look and photography of the Mercenary is far better than Companeros.
Thats not to say Companeros isn't a great film which of course we all know it is!!!

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« Reply #31 on: February 25, 2006, 11:54:04 AM »

I agree with all that banjo says, the cinematography is by the same cinematographer on the releases I have I don't see much of a quality difference, the subjects though, in The Mercenary are more stunning, the sunsets, the white washed viliages against a stormy sky, etc.  Its just Companero's is a bit looser in its continuity, played more for laughs, but is way short of an actual comedy, it has the sight gags that begin showing the comedy influences in the SW genre at the time.

The Mercenary is a very polished western. The next step for Corbucci if he was following in Leone footsteps, would have been an (OUATITW) style opus, instead he made the very similar Companeros.

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« Reply #32 on: February 25, 2006, 04:54:06 PM »

The main fault with the Mercenary lies in the fact that you see Musante and think of Milian all of the time: all of the time! Why did he ever got the part at all is beyond me. With Milian the movie would have made it easily in the Top Three non Leone's  SWs of all time. Maybe for some it is in those best 3 (maybe for me too) but still the Musante's performance is a major flaw. He's boxing his part all the way through. When you think how Volonté or Kinski played mexican roles in spite of looking less the part, it really does irritate how he couldn't manage anything, if not memorable, at least tolerable. Of course he was not in the same class as those two (few were), still I feel he could have played better his character. But maybe I expect too much of what, in the end, was just an average actor who had the fortune of coming to Italy in the best period of that cinematograohy and playing lead in 2 blockbusters.

« Last Edit: February 25, 2006, 05:06:06 PM by titoli » Logged

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« Reply #33 on: February 25, 2006, 07:40:28 PM »

Yea I do agree that Milian would have done the part immensely better, for me though it doesn't detract all that much that I notice it (in that respect Steiger's even more miscast in GLT/DYS) but I do prefer Giovana Ralli's  performance to Iris Berben's in Companero's.



L'Uccello dalle piume di cristallo, (1970) is the other blockbuster that you are referring too I presume?

 

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« Reply #34 on: February 25, 2006, 07:58:32 PM »

Is there a Region 1 DVD of The Mercenary? I remember seeing a VHS of A Professional Gun at a video rental store, but I'd rather see the original version.

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« Reply #35 on: February 25, 2006, 08:00:51 PM »

Of the two blockbusters I was referring to, one is the Argento movie, the other is the top grossing movie (in Italy) of 1970:

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0065408/

I don't know whether the Mercenary was a hit to be compared to these ones: which would make three.

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« Reply #36 on: February 25, 2006, 08:09:00 PM »

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in that respect Steiger's even more miscast in GLT/DYS

But he's saved partially, in the italian version, by the great dubber Carlo Romano. As I have already said elsewhere in this forum, when watching the movie the last times I was thinking of Eli Wallach all the time in his place. We'll remain forever with the doubt whether he could have topped Tuco. I think he could, as Juan is a more rounded character. A pity.

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« Reply #37 on: February 25, 2006, 09:40:30 PM »

Juan has more of a Latino wiseguy accent than Tuco, who has more of a rotten Mexican immigrant accent. I never thought of Tuco when watching Juan.

Man, now I'm desperate to see The Mercenary Grin

I don't want to sway away from the topic of Mercenary, but since we're talking about cinematography did anyone else notice how the cinematography in the Mexican town in the first half an hour or two of Companeros was sloppy and amateurish(I thought that Django's cinematography, which I enjoyed, was miles ahead) but by the second hour and after Xantos enters the picture it becomes very polished and stylized? Look at the scene in the church ruins with Xantos' gang, it's almost on a Leone/Visconti level.

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« Reply #38 on: February 25, 2006, 11:26:46 PM »

I like Musante in this...I think he works well w/ Franco Nero...and I like Steiger in Giu La Testa...I see Milian & Wallach enough. It's nice to see fresh faces.

The only properly presented, uncut dvd release w/ an English soundtrack (The Italian release has no English subs) is the Region 2 Japanese dvd--->
http://www.xploitedcinema.com/dvds/dvds.asp?title=2419

Currently out of stock (until July) and very pricy.
It's a damn shame.


« Last Edit: February 25, 2006, 11:28:34 PM by boardwalk_angel » Logged

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« Reply #39 on: February 26, 2006, 07:05:03 AM »

I didn't notice the cinematography being that different from begining to end in Companero's, you are talking about the Anchor Bay DVD with the English subs for the Italian beginning right? The whole movie is flashback more or less.

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« Reply #40 on: February 26, 2006, 05:19:35 PM »

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Juan has more of a Latino wiseguy accent than Tuco, who has more of a rotten Mexican immigrant accent.

Y0ou're talking about  the english versions. But in the original italian versions the voice and the language are same for Tuco and Juan. 

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« Reply #41 on: February 26, 2006, 07:27:42 PM »

The only properly presented, uncut dvd release w/ an English soundtrack (The Italian release has no English subs) is the Region 2 Japanese dvd--->
http://www.xploitedcinema.com/dvds/dvds.asp?title=2419

Currently out of stock (until July) and very pricy.
It's a damn shame.

The japanese disc has been completely out of print since before summer 2005 I think. (I have tried finding it for almost a year now Tongue )

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« Reply #42 on: February 26, 2006, 08:16:31 PM »

Y0ou're talking about  the english versions. But in the original italian versions the voice and the language are same for Tuco and Juan. 
Why do you call the Italian versions "original"? This may be appropriate for GBU, which did follow BBC by several months, but for DYS Juan's English can be said to be the original in that much of it was recorded directly at the time of shooting (which was a first for an SL picture, and occurred only at Steiger's insistance). The Italian dubbing of Juan came later.


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Banjo
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« Reply #43 on: February 27, 2006, 05:17:42 AM »

I like Musante in this...I think he works well w/ Franco Nero
I agree,although Milian may possibly have been more entertaining,i still feel Musante was well cast and i enjoy his performance as Paco.

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cigar joe
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« Reply #44 on: February 27, 2006, 06:44:24 AM »

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agree,although Milian may possibly have been more entertaining,i still feel Musante was well cast and i enjoy his performance as Paco.


Don't get me wrong, Musante isn't detracting at all from the film, which I think is Corbucci's best,  he just doesn't quite come off quite as latin as Milian.

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