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Author Topic: I finally saw it too  (Read 11771 times)
titoli
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« Reply #30 on: September 27, 2006, 09:12:20 AM »

I'm not persuaded by this theory about Coburn blowing himself up to save Steiger's life from being a bank robber or revert to his former ways. What do you think is Steiger going to do after Coburn is dead? Actually Coburn says to him, before blowing himself to bits, that he has (haven't heard the english dialogue, I translate from italian) "cheated" him, by taking him into the revolution business. So, he could have decided to blow himself up to atone for this. But what is more likely - and this is what i always thought - is that he simply wants to put a stop at his suffering from the physical injury which he realizes being fatal.

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« Reply #31 on: September 27, 2006, 09:13:15 AM »

No, you're right, taking out Reza takes the fight out of the Federales. I think Mallory's immediate motive for lighting the fuse is to put himself out of his misery.

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« Reply #32 on: September 27, 2006, 09:18:39 AM »

Actually Coburn says to him, before blowing himself to bits, that he has (haven't heard the english dialogue, I translate from italian) "cheated" him, by taking him into the revolution business.
The English is, "I've given you a royal screwing." It's ambiguous what he's referring to, it could just mean he's sorry for leaving him without helping him get to America. I like your idea, titoli, that he's talking about the whole adventure, which was more or less concocted by Mallory to get back at Juan for blowing up his employer.

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« Reply #33 on: September 27, 2006, 09:41:33 AM »

The English is, "I've given you a royal screwing." It's ambiguous what he's referring to, it could just mean he's sorry for leaving him without helping him get to America. I like your idea, titoli, that he's talking about the whole adventure, which was more or less concocted by Mallory to get back at Juan for blowing up his employer.

Do you mean that Mallory, after losing his job was obliged to get involved into the revolution against his will?

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« Reply #34 on: September 27, 2006, 09:48:29 AM »



Sucker, Sean saves Juan's life because blowing himself up also means stopping the battle that was taking place, in which Juan could have been killed.



Well, don't get me wrong because it is always very interesting to hear other people's theories but I just couldn't buy that myself. I see it that the fatally-injured Mallory - Sean  Smiley  - blows himself up to finish it quickly and, maybe, take as many with him as he can.

I gave my analysis of the ending in another thread here "An Irishman's View" which explains why he was so disillusioned with what happened in Ireland so blowing himself up just ended the whole pain of it - betrayal on two counts, revolution and love -  the killing of his best ? friend or even relative - and his current predicament  - once and for all.


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titoli
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« Reply #35 on: September 27, 2006, 11:19:54 AM »

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The English is, "I've given you a royal screwing." It's ambiguous what he's referring to, it could just mean he's sorry for leaving him without helping him get to America.

"Royal screwing" is perfect for italian "fregatura". But I can see no ambiguity. He wouldn't use in italian, but also in english, an expression like this about something merely planned by naive Juan in which he cannot have believed. You really think that Sean could have turned into a bank robber? 

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I like your idea, titoli, that he's talking about the whole adventure, which was more or less concocted by Mallory to get back at Juan for blowing up his employer.

Here, also, I think he hasn't turned back to his old ways as a shortcut to a mean revenge vs. Juan. Sean is definitely always two steps ahead of Juan, at least at first, and could have put in act whatever reprisal he wished to. The fact he sees Juan's leader potential and reverts to his ol' ways which he had put aside because the former experience had led him to that personal trouble with Warbeck. Juan gives him a chance to revert to the kind of life he believes in and I must admit that I like the ellyptical way in which Sean becomes again a professional revolutionary.


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« Reply #36 on: September 27, 2006, 12:01:52 PM »

The English is, "I've given you a royal screwing." It's ambiguous what he's referring to, it could just mean he's sorry for leaving him without helping him get to America.


That and basically being the cause of the death of his family and getting him into this whole mess. Can't just be because "we didn't make it to America" (sob).

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« Reply #37 on: September 28, 2006, 05:42:40 PM »


Here, also, I think he hasn't turned back to his old ways as a shortcut to a mean revenge vs. Juan. Sean is definitely always two steps ahead of Juan, at least at first, and could have put in act whatever reprisal he wished to. The fact he sees Juan's leader potential and reverts to his ol' ways which he had put aside because the former experience had led him to that personal trouble with Warbeck. Juan gives him a chance to revert to the kind of life he believes in and I must admit that I like the ellyptical way in which Sean becomes again a professional revolutionary.
Mallory's initial motivation for getting Juan involved with the revolutionaries is to get back at him for what he did to his income stream. But Mallory has a reason to take up with them himself; suddenly without an employer, he must find protection if he is going to survive. And in fact, as a former IRA man who has recently been involved with the assassination of a foreign imperialist, he has the perfect C.V. for a position with the insurgents. So, Mallory is able to accomplish two things at once: get a new livelihood and screw Juan over. Of course, both characters are overcome by subsequent events, and things go way beyond  what Mallory is able to control. Both men become vital instruments of the revolution, in spite of themselves. The conceit is rather amusing: contrary to Lenin, "professional revolutionaries" are not arbiters of the revolution (facilitating what historical necessity is unable to accomplish), but unwitting accomplices to it. Leone gets off a good one, showing again why he is so superior to that tedious Bertolucci.

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titoli
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« Reply #38 on: September 29, 2006, 07:24:57 AM »

Hmmm, should rewatch the movie, but can't see much of Sean's screwing Juan by making him a revolutionary leader. For a professional revolutionary like Sean that is the highest accomplishment one can ever reach. And Sean is also very much a master of his destiny: if he takes up again with revolutionaries is because he feels like doing that again, not just because it is a passing chance. Lenin's remark may not apply to Juan, but surely fits Sean. (Well, to a point: Lenin didn't go much for dynamite).     

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« Reply #39 on: September 29, 2006, 09:53:45 AM »

Hmmm, should rewatch the movie, but can't see much of Sean's screwing Juan by making him a revolutionary leader.   


He screws him over because Juan wants nothing to do with the revolution. That's clearly stated in the film, please tell me you just misinterperted Jenkin's explaination.

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titoli
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« Reply #40 on: September 29, 2006, 01:57:51 PM »

As said, I should rewatch the movie. Still the main point for me is that Sean decides to puts himself back in the game, not just to have a laugh at Juan. And the opportunistic view DJ holds forth for justifiying this return to the old habits doesn't square with Sean's personality. This is the point: if he gets back to the revolution it is because of his moral stance. If you can't see that, then you're right. He doesn't miss the chance to gain a useful revolutionary to the cause, though at the same time laughing at him. Had he simply decided to go his own way after having made a unwilling hero out of Juan, then I'd agree.

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dave jenkins
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« Reply #41 on: September 30, 2006, 05:23:21 PM »

As I've said, the Mexican revolution is a chance for Mallory to screw over Juan ("I don't want to be a hero all I want is the MONEYYYYYYY!!!") and a way to get along once his employer is dead. But events get out of hand, and Mallory falls back into a pattern of long practice, re-assuming the role of professional revolutionary. But it's just a job. Perhaps there is a moment when he is tempted to believe in what he's doing, but Juan sets him straight with his "All Dead Peasants" speech. Mallory signifes agreement when he throws the Bakunin into the mud. From that point on the movie is all about the firendship; Mallory does what must be done to survive, but also what must be done to keep Juan alive and allow him to have his revenge on Gunther Ruiz (for killing his children). There is no revolution for Mallory or Juan, it has been replaced with their dream of America.

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titoli
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« Reply #42 on: October 01, 2006, 10:36:50 AM »

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Mallory falls back into a pattern of long practice, re-assuming the role of professional revolutionary. But it's just a job.

Then why is he still reading Bakunin?

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dave jenkins
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« Reply #43 on: October 01, 2006, 04:50:24 PM »

Please read every word of my comment above.

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« Reply #44 on: October 11, 2006, 12:21:01 PM »





So to sum it up, great movie, I'm glad I finally saw it, I'm going to show this to everyone I know!   Smiley
No movie I have seen to date has unseated this classic from my No. 1 rating IMHO. The music, the character
development etc... Even after 35 years it still holds up. One damn good movie Cool

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