Films of Sergio Leone > Other Films

Gunfight at Red Sands aka Duello nel Texas (1963)

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Franks Harmonica:
Anyone here ever seen this early SW titled Duello Nel Texas AKA Gunfight at Redsands.
From 1963, it stars Richard Harrison and Aldo Sambrell and has some good reviews on IMDB.
I found a 16mm film print and was wondering if anyone here can recommend this film before I drop a fistful of duckets on it.

boardwalk_angel:
I haven't seen it yet.... .......but, is the 16mm a widescreen copy?
Found a VHS version here-->
http://www.somethingweird.com/cart.php?target=product&product_id=21263&category_id=103

which is most likely fullscreen..but I don't know for sure...
(I've noticed other widescreen VHS at this site.)

boardwalk_angel:
I've seen it now, & I'd recommend it... but I would NOT spend a lot of $$ on a 16mm print. What does the seller want for it?
It's interesting......but it's really a PRE-Spaghetti Western....in tone... & spirit....dramatically & musically. It has more in common with the Hollywood knockoffs produced in Italy pre '64...but SW devotees will definitely notice & appreciate the elements of future films that are there.
I'll have a review...my take on it... posted on these boards soon.

Franks Harmonica:
Well, the print went over for $200.00, so I decided to pass on the print, as it was not a scope print anyway.
 I did however pick up a cinemascope print of Tom Horn for $61.00 and nobody else even bid on it!
Suckers

boardwalk_angel:
Gunfight At Red Sands (Duello Nel Texas) (1963) 

                                                                      
Cast:
Richard Harrison
Giacomo Rossi-Stuart
Sara Lezana
Daniel Martín 
Sam Field   
Aldo Sambrell

Directed by:
Ricardo Blasco
Original Music by Ennio Morricone   (as Dan Savio)
Musical Director:
Ennio Morricone ....  (as Leo Nichols)  --> (Bruno Nicolai?)
Cinematography by Massimo Dallamano

1963...Sergio Leone had done 1 film as credited director..."Colossus of Rhodes"..; Clint Eastwood was still best known as "Rowdy Yates" on "Rawhide".
Duello Nel Texas was released in Italy in Sept. 1963...Filmed in Northern Spain....using the set that would later be used as the town in FOD & FAFDM.
Ricardo Blasco ..directed 8 other films..a couple of Zorro movies...most of his work was as Second Unit Director or Assistant Director.
Massimo Dallamano, the cinematographer, went on to be director of photography on both Fistful and FAFDM.

Richard Harrison..had appeared in 1 previous "pre-spaghetti" Western..."El Sabor de la Venganza" (1963) (Gunfight at High Noon (USA) )....& went on to play Ringo in "$100,000 for Ringo"....Rocco in "Vengeance" (.Joko invoca Dio e muori).. & starred in "I'll Forgive You, Before I Kill You" ....  .."Aquasanta Joe" & others.
Gunfight at Red Sands is also noteworthy for being the first Italian Western to feature a Ennio Morricone score...& if my instincts are correct......a collaboration w/ Bruno Nicolai.

Harrison is Ricardo..a/k/a "Gringo"......who returns from an unsuccessful campaign fighting w/ guerillas in Mexico...& now just wants peace.......to discover that his adoptive father has been killed & the family's gold stolen.
So he's gotta..avenge his father..& get the gold back.

This is Harrison without the stubble..not quite the antihero...an avenger...but  not "The Stranger"...although he has been away for 4 years.

As for Ennio Morricone's first Western score.....parts of it are quite nice...others are just...OK...Hollywood-style stuff, as requested by the film's producers. ..Of course, early Morricone is very interesting...the title song (A Gringo Like Me) is a different version than the one that's become somewhat familiar...an earlier version w/ a different vocalist.
He is also credited as musical director under the name of "Leo Nichols"...which for me is too close to Bruno Nicolai..that I suspect that to be a mistake..& Nicolai to be the true musical director.

The Italian Western was still very much an American Western imitation..but we see the SWlike quirk here & there..a lot of "roots" of what was to come in many films....the weird villain type (giggling..twitching guy)............& there's gold..mexican revolutionaries...a corrupt sheffif who hates Mexicans....more than a few killings..a couple of not very well done fistfights..a final showdown that's OK.......minor red herrings & misdirection..pretty straightforward.
Good bit early..the shootout w/ the Federales...although it does come off as too theatrical.
Check out the scene early on when a jeep drives by in the background.
Rest of the cast ranges from pretty awful to pretty good... nice turn by Sara Lezana as Lisa..who gets to show off some action chops that a year later became traditionally not done in SW.

Gunfight At Red Sands is really a PRE-Spaghetti Western....in tone... & spirit....dramatically & musically. It has more in common with the Hollywood knockoffs produced in Italy pre '64...but SW devotees will definitely notice & appreciate the elements of future films that are there...
 
The style hadn't arrived yet......nor the twinkle in the eye..but something quite unique and wonderful was just about to be born.

Spaghetti Western? Maybe an Antipasto Western.

Postscript:
I've heard that there is a Japanese DVD....Running Time: 92mins.
in the proper aspect Ratio(s): LB VistaVision...  Italian Audio Track w/ Japanese Subtitles .
Apart from that.. just Full Screen VHS.










 

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