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Author Topic: El Condor (1970)  (Read 20298 times)
Tim
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« Reply #15 on: February 04, 2007, 12:58:48 PM »

  I bought this last week at a local video store for $1.99 so I figured even if I hated it, it was cheap.  It's by no means a great western, but it kept me entertained throughout.  LVC is great as Jaroo.  It was great to see him play against type (think Col. Mortimer or Angel Eyes) as the grizzled old gold prospector who carries this movie.  I'm a big fan of Jim Brown, but this isn't his best part.

  The nudity, or at least the amount of nudity, caught me off-guard.  No complaints of course   Wink.  The action scenes were very well done, especially the assault on El Condor.  The actual fort set may be the best thing about the movie.  What a cool set!  Looking at imdb, it says that it is the same fort used in A Reason to Live, a Reason to Die, so I'll have to look into that one too.

  Back to El Condor though, it's worth a watch mostly for the action and LVC as Jaroo.  A $1.99 well spent.

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« Reply #16 on: June 11, 2008, 09:29:17 PM »

EL CONDOR 1970

Jim Brown (Luke), Lee Van Cleef (Jaroo), Patrick O'Neal (General Chavez), Mariana Hill (Claudine), Iron Eyes Cody (Santana), Imogen Hassall (Dolores), Elisha Cook (Old Convict)

After learning of a fortune in gold held within a Mexican stronghold called El Condor, Luke, a convict serving sentence in prison escapes in a bid to get his hands on the treasure. Enlisting the help of a loutish bandit, the duo seek the assistance of an Apache tribe in order to complete the mission but nothing is mentioned to the Indians about the gold. Instead they are promised guns and horses with the real intention being kept a secret. Once the operation is completed, a cruel twist of fate is revealed culminating in a final stand off between friends and enemies.

I copied this off the Western Channel this evening and it's an enjoyable big budget western from Warner Brothers. Guillermin shows a sure hand in the many huge battle scenes and this possibly aided in his being chosen in the long derided first remake of KING KONG (1976). The final assault on the fortress is rousingly abetted by a suitably Spanish oriented score by Maurice Jarre. There's nothing overly special about this film nor anything that hasn't been seen before in countless Italian westerns save for the expanse of the action sequences found in the film. EL CONDOR (1970) would appear to have had an influence on Tonino Vallerii's A REASON TO LIVE, A REASON TO DIE (1972), a likewise ambitious but boring western and not near as much fun as EL CONDOR (1970).

Jim Brown has long been a favorite actor of mine in not only his big Hollywood films, but also his blaxploitation outings. In my opinion, he was far more versatile and charismatic than the seemingly more popular Fred Williamson. Here, Brown doesn't really stray far from the typical cardboard hero found in dozens of similar films but the film doesn't try to be anything more than a bombastic popcorn action film replete with violence, explosions and surprisingly abundant nudity.

The amount of nudity is staggering for a big studio production from 1970 not to mention most of it is full frontal. One particularly violent scene has Brown and Van Cleef massacre a number of Federales who are enjoying a night with beautiful senorita's who have no problem baring all for the camera. There's even a rather surprising amount of male nudity here as well as a brief shot of male frontal nudity. The lover of General Chavez, Claudine, even strips off all of her clothes in a bid to distract the Federales to enable Luke, Jaroo and the Apaches to break into the fort. The actress Mariana Hill bares all for a good amount of screen time here. she can also be seen in the 1967 Season 2 episode of the classic "James Bond in the Old West" television show, THE WILD, WILD WEST playing the assistant to the diminutive and maniacal Dr. Miguelito Loveless.

Lee Van Cleef plays a decidedly different role than he normally plays. His role is less serious (although he turns dead serious towards the end) here not unlike his role in BAD MAN'S RIVER (1971) only this time Van Cleef is reminiscent of the typical Mexican bandito roles predominantly found in scores of Euro westerns. He's dirty, uncouth and crude although he does show a sign of humanity in a scene with a young Mexican boy. Van Cleef gets to show off a side of his acting persona the likes of which he normally didn't get to unveil in these films. It's a pleasant change of pace from his typical grizzled bounty killer role and an uncharacteristically over the top performance.

Not a classic, but definitely lots of fun mixing big budget action with equal dollops of boobs and blood and an interesting double act by action stars Jim Brown and Lee Van Cleef.

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« Reply #17 on: June 12, 2008, 04:49:47 AM »

I pretty much agree with your review, I saw it on the big screen on Times Square back in 1970, and Marianna Hill's striptease was quite riveting, lol, Afro.

« Last Edit: June 19, 2008, 03:58:17 AM by Banjo » Logged

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« Reply #18 on: June 12, 2008, 12:50:59 PM »

There was a thread for this already but I pretty much agree with your review, I saw it on the big screen on Times Square back in 1970, and Marianna Hill's striptease was quite riveting, lol, Afro.

There was another completely naked Spanish girl in the film during the part where Van Cleef and BRown kill the soldiers. That girl was even more stacked and toned than Mariana Hill. Afro

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« Reply #19 on: June 12, 2008, 02:41:22 PM »

 I bought this at a clearance VHS sale, that was surprisingly good condition, and liked it.  Like AC said, not a classic, but entertaining and well-done which is more than you can say for a lot of the AW and SW second-tier movies.  Jim Brown and LVC are a good team together, the fort set is very cool, and the ending caught me off-guard. Smiley

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« Reply #20 on: June 13, 2008, 10:10:40 AM »

Not sure why FC doesn't think Jaroo was overtaken by greed when it's very evident this is the case especially when he accepts the terms from Luke and his behavior upon seeing the hidden "gold" and his reaction upon learning the truth about it. Neither character was very likable and Jaroo bluntly admits to taking advantage of the Apache's for what he can get out of them. Only the scene with the little Mexican boy does he show any sort of non-shallow character traits. The way the film plays out, it would seem both Luke and Jaroo are just as villainous, if not more so than the Federales occupying the fort since they only want the gold for comforts and materialistic means while Chavez wants the gold to take back his country. Either way, the downer ending is no more jarring than the fairly strong violence sprinkled throughout the picture. Obviously a nod to other violent westerns in the wake of THE WILD BUNCH and the highly controversial SOLDIER BLUE among them, the exploitation elements don't really gel well with the rest of the film but you just go with it as the film isn't out for anything more than entertainment value. Judging by the pic quality on the Encore Western airing, this film has been remastered.

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« Reply #21 on: June 13, 2008, 11:42:12 AM »

I'm just selling my 35mm print at  Ebay.de

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« Reply #22 on: June 13, 2008, 12:43:13 PM »

That gorgeous actress I mentioned was Imogen Hassall as Delores. I thought she looked familiar. I saw her in the Hammer film WHEN DINOSAURS RULED THE EARTH (1970) years back. Here's some pics of her...

http://www.celebrity8x10s.com/imogen_hassall.html

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« Reply #23 on: June 13, 2008, 03:43:34 PM »

Not sure why FC doesn't think Jaroo was overtaken by greed


I meant that Luke was much more greedy than Jaroo.

Jaroo was more than happy to take a small percentage of the gold while Luke wanted the entire litter.

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« Reply #24 on: June 13, 2008, 03:47:27 PM »

That gorgeous actress I mentioned was Imogen Hassall as Delores. I thought she looked familiar. I saw her in the Hammer film WHEN DINOSAURS RULED THE EARTH (1970) years back. Here's some pics of her...

http://www.celebrity8x10s.com/imogen_hassall.html


Here is her short bio on wiki
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imogen_Hassall

she commited suicide it seems Sad

I am floored to learn that she is english.
I could have sworn she was from Spain.




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« Reply #25 on: June 13, 2008, 03:49:23 PM »


I meant that Luke was much more greedy than Jaroo.

Jaroo was more than happy to take a small percentage of the gold while Luke wanted the entire litter.

Yeah, true, but Jaroo was so overcome by the anticipation of obtaining a large sum of gold that by the time he learns what the gold truly is, he is ready to kill Luke for it and his actions leading up to his realization show a man not in complete control of his faculties unlike the calm, cool and collected Luke.

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« Reply #26 on: June 13, 2008, 03:52:56 PM »


Here is her short bio on wiki
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imogen_Hassall

she commited suicide it seems Sad

I am floored to learn that she is english.
I could have sworn she was from Spain.


Yes, she died in 1980 I think. There's a book on her from Midnight Media/Midnight Marquee. I bought a number of books from them in the past such as an autographed Chris Lee and Paul Naschy books and a fine Peter Cushing autobio as well as some other things. They used to have Fanex cons every year in Baltimore many of them importing Hammer stars for Q & A sessions and autograph signings.

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« Reply #27 on: June 15, 2008, 02:04:11 PM »

I'm just selling my 35mm print at  Ebay.de

Sorry to interrupt this discussion as a complete outsider (I haven't seen the movie), but, mike, may I ask why? And out of curiosity, what else movies do you have on 35mm?

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« Reply #28 on: June 16, 2008, 04:27:46 PM »

Sorry to interrupt this discussion as a complete outsider (I haven't seen the movie), but, mike, may I ask why? And out of curiosity, what else movies do you have on 35mm?

a.) because my mother died and I need cash since there are no other relatives to pay for the bills.
I sold THE IMPORTANT THING IS TO LOVE (Zulawsky, K.Kinski), L'UOMO, L'ORGOGLIO (FRANCO NERO, KLAUS KINSKI)  and  EL CONDOR yesterday. Next week THE SHINING (gorgeous print), ZOMBI 2 (Fulci) & WARHOL's DRACULA. Of all these films EL CONDOR is the least Smiley.
 

b.) I'll keep my favorite prints. Like EASY RIDER, BULLITT, IL MERCENARIO (yes), IL GRANDE SILENZIO (yeah),
three PECKINPAH's, SON OF HITLER, WAY OF THE DRAGON. And my 100 trailers, they're too cool to sell. Leone, 007, Polanski, McQueen, Wayne, Lee, Sci-Fi. mainly 1960-1980.

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« Reply #29 on: June 17, 2008, 05:51:43 AM »

a.) because my mother died and I need cash since there are no other relatives to pay for the bills.
I sold THE IMPORTANT THING IS TO LOVE (Zulawsky, K.Kinski), L'UOMO, L'ORGOGLIO (FRANCO NERO, KLAUS KINSKI)  and  EL CONDOR yesterday. Next week THE SHINING (gorgeous print), ZOMBI 2 (Fulci) & WARHOL's DRACULA. Of all these films EL CONDOR is the least Smiley.
 

b.) I'll keep my favorite prints. Like EASY RIDER, BULLITT, IL MERCENARIO (yes), IL GRANDE SILENZIO (yeah),
three PECKINPAH's, SON OF HITLER, WAY OF THE DRAGON. And my 100 trailers, they're too cool to sell. Leone, 007, Polanski, McQueen, Wayne, Lee, Sci-Fi. mainly 1960-1980.
I'm sorry about your mom.

God damn that Shining print looks tempting! But the price is what it is, even though I know it's not that much if you consider it's an 35mm print... Do I have to live in Germany to able to bid? I'll have to do some budgeting... And BTW, is it in English or German?

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