Tuesday, July 13, 2010

DEAF SMITH & JOHNNY EARS

Los amigos – Italian title
El sordo Smith y Johnny Orejas – Spanish title
Los Amigos – Spanish title
Rápidos, Brutos e Mortais – Brazilian title
Los amigos – French title
Das Lied von Mord und Totschlag – German title
Los Amigos – de två professionella – Swedish title
Deaf Smith & Johnny Ears – English title

A 1972 Italian, Spanish co-production [Prima Compagnia Cinematografica (Rome), Co. Film (Madrid)]
Producer: Joseph Janni, Luciano Perugia
Director: Paulo Cavara
Story: Oscar Saul, Harry Essex
Screenplay: Oscar Saul, Harry Essex, Paolo Cavara, Lucia Drudi Demby, Augusto Finocchi
Cinematography: Tonino Delli Colli (Antonio Delli Colli) [Technicolor, Panavision]
Music: Daniele Patucchi
Song: “The Ballad of Deaf and Ears” sung by Ann Collin
Song: “Even if Your Not the First One” sung by Ann Collin
Running time: 97 minutes

Cast:
Erastus “Deaf” Smith - Anthony Quinn (Antonio Quinn)
Juanito Johnny Ears - Franco Nero (Francesco Sparanero)
Susie - Pamela Tiffin (Pamela Wonso)
General Lucius Morton - Franco Graziosi
J.M. Hoffman - Renato Romano
Hester McDonald Morton - Ira Fürstenberg (Virginia von Fyrstenberg)
Reverend Williams - Adolfo Lastretti
Senator - Antonio Faa DiBruno
Mrs. Porter - Francesca Benedetti
Rosita McDonald - Cristina Airoldi (Conchita Airoldi)
Bull Logan - Romano Puppo
Bess - Franca Sciotto
Barrett - Enrico Casadei
James - Lorenzo Fineschi
Corey - Mario Carra
Moss - Luciano Rossi
Von Mittler - Tom Felleghy (Tamás Fellegi)
Colonel Mitchell McDonald - Renzo Moneta
McDonald girl - Margherita Trentini
with; Giorgio Dolfin, Fulvio Grimaldi, Pasolo Pierani, Freddy Unger (Goffredo Unger), Omero Capanna


The setting is 1836 in Texas, just after the Republic of Texas won the conflict to separate from Mexico. However, the situation in the Republic is still volatile; there are internal groups, some supported by foreign powers, that aim to have Texas for themselves, one of the biggest being lead by General Lucius Morton. However, president Sam Houston is aware of the plot against him and the Republic, and he assigns his best agent to infiltrate and quash the brewing rebellion. That agent is Erastus "Deaf" Smith , who just happens to be a deaf-mute. Riding with him is his friend "Johnny Ears", who not only acts as his ears, but helps to conceal his friend's handicaps from anyone they encounter. Which is especially necessary, since Morton and his forces have intercepted government communication so that they not only know someone is after them, but that they know to be on the lookout for a deaf-mute.
Johnny may yell and violently disagree with Smith about plans to infiltrate the enemy fort, but as he argues we realize that though his request to Smith to abandon the mission and ride off could be considered selfish, we see he genuinely cares about his friend. One interesting aspect of this friendship that's revealed is that it isn't that Johnny thinks Smith can't take care of himself, but that Johnny himself would feel helpless without Smith. Anyway, their relationship leads to some great scenes, the best being a wonderful wordless sequence when they are setting a trap for the enemy; it's clear by their faces and actions that things don't get much better than when you are with a friend, working together, and fully confident about the future. There are times when life is absolutely wonderful to experience.
When Ears falls in love with saloon girl Susie, Deaf decides he's no longer needed and after they successfully conclude their mission he leaves the pair in the middle of the night and makes off to fend for himself.

You Tube link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KDbYw0MOGEk&feature=related

2 comments:

  1. By golly but I been away 13 months and two weeks.I'll wager that I've missed a lot of information.For years I kept up on this genre,now I'll have to hit it with grit teeth because I've probably forgotten half of what I did know.I remember enjoying this film and thinking tony quinn was probably attracted as an actor to this role because it was a challenge.It will be a challenge to try to catch up to everyone here.

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  2. Welcome back, Raymie.

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