2 August 2011 | ma-cortes
Acceptable Paella Western with a prolific American director and two Hollywood actors
A good example of Latino western genre from Spain. Wanted ¨Dead or alive¨ north of the border, Jess Carlin (Audie Murphy) lives safely in Mexico. Then he hears his brother was murdered in a gun-down . Knowning his brother never carried a gun he heads north to encounter his brother's assassin. Jess goes out to avenge his brother and trespasses Rio Grande frontier and after battling bounty killers ( Aldo Sambrell and Antonio Molino Rojo) . Jess arrives in Rimrock, a little town dominated by Luke Starr (Broderick Crawford) and his underlings. Escaped goes back to his old home town pursued by bounty hunters . Starr is owner of ¨Silver Ring Saloon¨ , furthermore is the man Jess wants but he unable to encounter some proof until he is given by Sandy (Luz Marquez), former brother's girlfriend, an item found on his brother's body . As Jess seeks vengeance against Luke , while his hoodlums kill , mistreat and harass townspeople . Meanwhile Jess falls in love with a Saloon-girl (Diana Lorys).
Offbeat Chorizo-Spaghetti Western co-produced between Spain and US and doesn't follows the Sergio Leone wake , but it is proceeded in American models . It's an exciting western with breathtaking gunfight between the protagonist Audie Murphy against the heartless Broderick Crawford and his hoodlums . Audie Murphy is fine, he ravages the screen, shoots, hit and run and kills . This movie is a lot of fun to watch. It's an acceptable story with a touch of peculiarity, some great characters, and an amazing music score. The picture also titled ¨The Texican ¨ is a tale of justice and revenge, as a man returns home to a little town after his breakout and looks for vendetta. The basic plot is typical spaghetti western fare, but what makes this movie stand out is its style . Broderick Crawford's performance in the movie is a bit wooden for the role of such an interesting character, but the fantastic performance by the always great Aldo Sambrell as the slimy, menacing outlaw make up for , here in his ordinary role as bandit and in a cruelly baddie character , he is terrific, and bears a hysterical and mocking aspect , subsequently he would play similar characters . Appears as secondaries the habitual in Spanish/Italian Western such as Victor Israel , Gerad Tichy , Antonio Casas, Antonio Molino Rojo and Frank Braña , both of them usual in Leone films.
The film packs violence , shootouts , high body-count and it's fast moving and quite entertaining . There is plenty of action in the movie , guaranteeing some shoot'em up or stunts every few minutes. There is a very odd implementation of shots in the camera work during some particular scenes as the film approaches its climax , as in the final gunfights full of dust , wind and shots . The movie gets the usual Western issues, such as avengers antiheroes , violent facing off , exaggerated baddies, soundtrack with Morricone influence , among them . The sense of pacing is such that his film can be counted on to move quickly and smoothly . Good production design creating an excellent scenario with luminous outdoors, dirty and rocky landscapes under a glimmer sun and fine sets . The musician Nino Fidenco composes a nice soundtrack and well conducted , this turns out to be one of the most memorable parts of the movie; as it's full of enjoyable sounds and haunting musical background . The opening and ending songs are two of my favorites, and are of those unforgettable tunes that will play in your mind over and over long after the movie is realized. The soundtrack contributes tremendously to the atmosphere of the film, including an emotive leitmotif, the music score is perhaps the best part of this film . Striking cinematography by Francisco Marin , though is necessary a correct remastering . Interior scenes filmed in Spuglas De Llobregat , Barcelona outskirts and outdoor sequences with barren exteriors filmed in Spanish places located on Fraga (Huesca) , replacing Almeria . ¨Fraga¨ resulted to be the location where were shot lots of Western produced and directed by Catalan people as Alfonso Balcazar , J.J. Balcazar , Jose Antonio De La Loma , Juan Bosch, Ignacio F. Iquino and Julio Buchs , among others , because Almeria was too far and the landscapes bear remarkable resemblance . This motion picture is well produced by Alfonso Balcazar , being professionally directed by Lesley Selander . Selander is generally considered to be the most prolific director of feature Westerns of all time, with at least 107 to his credit between 1935 and 1967. He realized his first feature in 1936, a western , genre in which he would not only excel but one where he would spent much of the rest of his career. Although Selander couldn't be deemed an "A"-list director, his movies had a professionalism and a verve that many of those made by his fellow B directors lacked . He also filmed detective thrillers, action/adventure motion pictures and even a horror film or two . He finishes a close second with 106 horse operas helmed between 1917 and 1949. Rating : 5,5 . Acceptable and passable