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Author Topic: And God Said to Cain aka E Dio disse a Caino (1970)  (Read 19841 times)
cigar joe
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« on: March 29, 2006, 06:28:25 AM »

Just got this in the mail yesterday, from Franco Cleef, poped it in and watched about 10 minutes, first impresions nice clean transfer, Kinsky's dubbing is good, he sounds like Santo from "A Bullet For The General" here, score nothing to shout about yet, and it looks like it was past the heyday of the big budget westerns, a clear give away is that it so far looks like it was all shot in a gravel pit. (which stands in pretty good for a desert looking landscape, no or very little vegetation, erroded slopes, etc., don't get me wrong, but you can spot the blast drill holes along the cuts every once in a while). I'll watch the whole film straight through and write a review soon.

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« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2006, 08:54:52 AM »

Thanks Cigar Joe,i'm intrigued to hear more about this obscure sw!

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« Reply #2 on: March 29, 2006, 10:14:55 AM »

I have heard mixed reviews about it for years now. Some love it, some hate it. I figured I would wait until a nice transfer came along to purchase it.

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« Reply #3 on: March 29, 2006, 07:34:51 PM »

Ok back to the film. Hunkered down in an easy chair I watched the film through just a few minutes ago, Gary Hamilton (Kinsky) is in a chain gang breaking rocks he gets pardonded and basically goes on the vengence trail after the Acombar family who double crossed him.

Antonio Margheriti directed this sort of genre fusion, Spaghetti Western/Suspence film. Its got almost a Gothic feel, with indian caves and interconnected mineshafts that have trap door opennings into various town buildings.  These grenre twists are probably some of the reasons the SW genre played out.

I get the feeling that these kind of films, to me anyway, seem to tend to dilute the iconography, and demthyologises the "fairy tail" that Leone gave to us with the Dollars Films and OUTITW. I suppose with the popularity of the SW genre and everybody trying to cash in these struggles to remain creative invariably lead to experimental films like this.

This is the first SW I've seen where the emphasis is really on the rifle a Winchester 73, rather than a pistol, Hamilton's Winchester is given to him by an old man at a shack near Gary's home town. So it sort of feels with the lower production values more like watching a very good in color, slightly over the top "The Rifleman" TV show rather than a film. Two thirds of the film takes place during a storm that approaches at sundown and blows into the night giving the showdown an eerie back drop of dust and blowing debris. A pealing church bell adds to the atmosphere. On a whole its not bad.

Now here is one example of the difference between journeyman vs. master, during this storm the lighting stays staionary, a Leone would have had wildly swinging lamps with carzy shadows both hiding an revealing, loudly banging doors and signs. Its just missing that extra creative spark.

After Hamilton gets "busy with it", Acombar's men drop like files, some in unusal and macabre ways. It builds to an okay, well shot ending which has been done before in other films so it wasn't original.

Kinsky is rather methodical here, he's definitely not chewing up the scenery, which I think is a mistake, with Kinsky you really, really, want an over the top performance, that was Kinsky's gift.

Its a good B SW that feels like a very good TV Western with a TV type score to match. There are probably lots of these out there in Spaghetti World, films that fit between the cream of the cream and the dregs, a lot of them will have no big name actors so they will probably pass under our radar screens.

« Last Edit: March 29, 2006, 07:39:20 PM by cigar joe » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2006, 07:47:28 AM »

Its kinda hard to imagine Kinski as the good guy but i'm still very tempted with this one!

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« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2006, 09:47:07 AM »

Ok back to the film. Hunkered down in an easy chair I watched There are probably lots of these out there in Spaghetti World, films that fit between the cream of the cream and the dregs, a lot of them will have no big name actors so they will probably pass under our radar screens.

most definatly. which is why I dont want to miss a minute of it.

Thanks for the review Joe. I only read a bit because I didnt want to spoil myself.

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« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2006, 04:12:08 PM »

CJ's review is right on the dot, little to add.
To have Kinsky play the good one is like having Fred Astaire sitting on a wheelchair.
The main problem with the movie is the story: much too basic. A man is out there for vengeance. The movie tells how many men he has to kill to get to base. The rest is stuffing, more or less well enacted by the director, who surely is a professional in arranging things before the camera: sometime a little too much (see the scene where the people of the town go out in the street. They look like the body-snatchers, so well in line they are).
The only original, good thing of the movie is the bell toll effect: inspired by Leone, will be taken up again, as we know, by the master himself.




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« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2006, 03:11:27 AM »


To have Kinsky play the good one is like having Fred Astaire sitting on a wheelchair.
I need to sit through this again but Kinski ain't exactly a clean cut smily Giuliano Gemma hero type here and i think its stretching it a bit to call him a good guy when you consider the scrupleless way he deals with Acombars mens and the woman who betrayed him,the only hint of goodness in this movie being that he didn't kill Acombars son.
For me this is Margherittis best western(a tv western? Shocked - gimme a break!-much too many rough edges and i've never seen anything from that ilk this edgy!!) very spooky and atmospheric with as much tension provided as any other sw i've seen,and a good soundtrack i believe.The script is more intelligent than  anything i've seen from Leone-all of the performances are top notch-its very intruiging watching Acombars character getting gradually more and more stressed as his men are systematically knocked off one by one,while pretending to his son and woman that theres nothing out of the ordinary going down.
I seriously wish there were "lots of these out there in the Spaghetti World" because i'm not  far off the 200 mark for sw's and the only parellel i can think of offhand is the excellent Django The Bastard.

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« Reply #8 on: September 04, 2006, 05:30:37 AM »

I have almost the impression that Kinsky is embarassed, like he doesn't know what he should be up to, as  in the final duel in the mirror room. Those close-up of him are revealing: he looks to me like he's asking us: "What expression am I supposed to play?".

I can see, though, where the point of division in liking the movie or not lies: probably the horror fans like the effects that specialist Margheriti adopts in many scenes. For the same reason western fans don't.

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« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2006, 07:39:34 AM »

Quote
For me this is Margherittis best western(a tv western?  - gimme a break!-much too many rough edges and i've never seen anything from that ilk this edgy!!) very spooky and atmospheric with as much tension provided as any other sw i've seen,and a good soundtrack i believe.The script is more intelligent than  anything i've seen from Leone-all of the performances are top notch-its very intruiging watching Acombars character getting gradually more and more stressed as his men are systematically knocked off one by one,while pretending to his son and woman that theres nothing out of the ordinary going down.

Man you are seriously delusional, lol, this is third rate at best, definitely TV grade material, (you must have real crap om TV  in the UK if you can make that statement, IMO)

It plays and looks like a TV western the only thing different is the degree of violence and that's not enough to make it great.

I agree with titoli on the Horror fans vs Western fans point of divison.

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« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2006, 11:28:19 PM »

I need to sit through this again but Kinski ain't exactly a clean cut smily Giuliano Gemma hero type here and i think its stretching it a bit to call him a good guy when you consider the scrupleless way he deals with Acombars mens and the woman who betrayed him,the only hint of goodness in this movie being that he didn't kill Acombars son.
For me this is Margherittis best western(a tv western? Shocked - gimme a break!-much too many rough edges and i've never seen anything from that ilk this edgy!!) very spooky and atmospheric with as much tension provided as any other sw i've seen,and a good soundtrack i believe.The script is more intelligent than  anything i've seen from Leone-all of the performances are top notch-its very intruiging watching Acombars character getting gradually more and more stressed as his men are systematically knocked off one by one,while pretending to his son and woman that theres nothing out of the ordinary going down.
I seriously wish there were "lots of these out there in the Spaghetti World" because i'm not  far off the 200 mark for sw's and the only parellel i can think of offhand is the excellent Django The Bastard.
Banjo, I'm in agreeance with you here. I posted a brief review of this a while back and I find the comparison to a TV western laughable much akin to the statement that the film was shot in a gravel pit from the first post (incidentally a reviewer stated this on ebay which is probably what that first post is based from) equally ridiculous as the only signs of said rock quarry appear during the opening five minutes with the remainder of the film taking place during a tornado!

I didn't see the detractors noticing this ORIGINAL concept particularly that the Coming of Kinski is symbolic of the approaching storm. Not to mention the gothic trappings (the hanging man from the church bell was a nice touch) and Kinski as an anti hero. It's a shame he didn't do more like this as I enjoyed him as such.

What exactly is a TV western anyways? Do you mean Gunsmoke? Bonanza? Cheyenne? Laredo? ETC, ETC, ETC.........Exactly where does AGSTC fit in this criteria?

The soundtrack while not the most memorable does have an interesting main theme.

And comparing this film to Leones, well, considering there had been around 300-400 spags made before it the saying 'imitation is the best form of flattery' doesn't apply here as I don't particularly recall any 15 minute scenes of three guys standing around looking at each other.

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« Reply #11 on: September 05, 2006, 05:19:28 AM »

What exactly is a TV western anyways?
A very valid question Arizona Colt and i'm awaiting Cigar Joes reply with interest.
My idea of a TV western as opposed to one we'd see in a theatre would be a low budget film(FOD?),with bland inoffensive stars and  a script/storyline/action made safe and cosy for a family audience.
And God Said To Cain?Surely someone else here must be seriously deluded! Grin
I wouldn't call Alex Cox deluded who also seems to rate AGSTC(and other sw's CJ dislikes including Requiescant,Django,Navajo Joe-are all these TV westerns too?) quite highly Wink

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cigar joe
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« Reply #12 on: September 05, 2006, 05:50:17 AM »

Its all about mastercraftsmanship and this lacks it.

You two are the deluded ones.  Cool

Judging by Cox's "Straight to Hell" he lacks it also

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« Reply #13 on: September 05, 2006, 07:23:43 AM »

    But with respect CJ,dya think people are more likely to take your word for it rather than someone like Cox who has over a long period of time extensively studied a huge chunk of sw's ,written books and is often consulted for his expertise to provide commentaries etc for various dvds or sw's shown on tv?  Roll Eyes
   We all have our own opinions of course but i really think its a bit disrespectly to suggest  fellow ethusiasts of this genre are deluded  Undecided
   About this horror fan vs western fan division-is there a division?Theres one big thing i notice from this forum is that there is a significant number of us that enjoy our gothic Hammer horrors as much as sw's and i don't see anything at all wrong with being innovative and pushing the boundaries a bit.Afterall comedy,kung fu,James Bond,whodunnits have all been successfully combined with a western so why not horror?
    Anyway CJ aren't you a fan of 4 of The Apocalypse?-plenty of horror influences there methinks Grin

« Last Edit: September 05, 2006, 07:41:03 AM by banjo » Logged
The Firecracker
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« Reply #14 on: September 05, 2006, 08:12:19 AM »



You two are the deluded ones.  Cool



I guess you can count me in then because I find that Leone's contemporarys were every bit as good as the master himself. Perhaps their methods are sloppier but at least they  knew how to make great entertaining films.

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