Monday, March 31, 2014

New CD Releases


Il mio nome e’ Shangai Joe
(Shanghai Joe)
(1973)
 
Composer: Bruno Nicolai
Director: Mario Caiano
Starring: Chen Lee, Klaus Kinski, Gordon Mitchell
 
Label: GDM
#GDM 4174
Tracks: 15
Total Time: 73:45
Extras: booklet
Limited edition of 500 copies
Available: March 31, 2014
 
Track Listing
1. Il Mio Nome (2:06)
2. La Partenza (2:59)
3. Sfida (3:08)
4. Richiami D'Amore (3:05)
5. L'Allegro Becchino (1:21)
6. Nubi (2:21)
7. Il Giuramento (1:31)
8. Shanghai Joe (3:01)
9. Caccia All'Uomo (2:20)
10. Remoto (1:26)
11. Alternativa (1:45)
12. Abissale (2:38)*
13. Saloon (2:54)
14. Attimi (2:41)
15. Il Mio Nome (2:59)
 
(*) Previously unreleased on the original album


Il pistolero dell’Ave Maria
(The Forgotten Pistolero)
(1969)
 
Composer: Franco Micalizzi, Roberto Pregadio
Director: Ferdinando Baldi
Starring: Leonard Mann, Peter Martell, Luciana Paluzzi
 
Label: GDM
#GDM 4175
Tracks: 14
Total Time: 25:18
Extras: color booklet
Limited edition of 500 cpoies
Available: March 31, 2014
 
Track Listing
1. BALLATA PER UN PISTOLERO (2:31)
2. UNO SGUARDO SERENO (1:55)
3. SENZA SCAMPO (1:57)
4. BALLATA PER UN PISTOLERO II (3:28)
5. RITORNO A CASA I (1:52)
6. CORRAL DE LA MOREIRA (3:24)
7. FIATO SOSPESO (1:00)
8. FIESTA EN EL PUEBLO (1:37)
9. ALEGRIA MEXICANA (2:44)
10. SABOR DE AGUARDIENTE (1:53)
11. CALLE EN LA NOCHE (1:54)
12. RITORNO A CASA II (2:26)
13. GIARDINI VIENNESI (2:32)
14. PRIMAVERA A VIENNA (3:28


I tre del Colorado
(Rebels in Canada)
(1965)
 
Composer: Carlo Savina
Director: Amando de Ossorio
Starring: George Martin, Diana Lorys, Luis Martin
 
Label: BEAT
Country: Italy
#BEATCDCR124
Tracks: 18
Total time: 41:29
Extras: 12-page full-color booklet
Available: March 31, 2014
 
Track Listing:
01. I tre del Colorado (seq. 1) 2:09
02. I tre del Colorado (seq. 2) 3:04
03. I tre del Colorado (seq. 3) 2:49
04. I tre del Colorado (seq. 4) 1:46
05. I tre del Colorado (seq. 5) 2:00
06. I tre del Colorado (seq. 6) 1:41
07. I tre del Colorado (seq. 7) 1:34
08. I tre del Colorado (seq. 8) 2:35
09. I tre del Colorado (seq. 9) 2:35
10. I tre del Colorado (seq. 10) 2:08
11. I tre del Colorado (seq. 11) 2:57
12. I tre del Colorado (seq. 12) 2:31
13. I tre del Colorado (seq. 13) 2:15
14. I tre del Colorado (seq. 14) 2:00
15. I tre del Colorado (seq. 15) 2:37
16. I tre del Colorado (seq. 16) 2:23
17. I tre del Colorado (seq. 17) 1:53
18. I tre del Colorado (seq. 18) 2:30

THUNDER WARRIOR II


Thunder II – Italian title
Thunder 2: Um Homem Chamado Trovao – Brazilian title
The Return of Thunder – Dutch title
Thunder II – Le guerrier rebelle – French title
Thunder - Der Rächer – German title
Thunder II – Ein indianer nimmit Rache – German title
Thunder 2 - I epistrofi – Greek title
Acorralado 2 – Peruvian title
Grom II – Polish title
Thunder – a fuego do guerreiro – Portuguese title
Thunder II – o regress do fuerreiro – Portuguese title
Thunder Warrior II – English title
 
A 1985 Italian production [Fulvia International Films (Rome)]
Producer: Larry Ludman (Fabrizio De Angelis)
Director: Larry Ludman (Fabrizio De Angelis)
Story: David Parker, Jr. (Dardano Sacchetti), Larry Ludman (Fabrizio De Angelis)
Screenplay: David Parker, Jr. (Dardano Sacchetti), Larry Ludman (Fabrizio De Angelis)
Cinematography: Sergio D’Offizi [color]
Music: Walter Ritz (Walter Rizzati)
Running time: 92 minutes
 
Cast:
Luis ‘Thunder’ Martinez – Mark Gregory (Marco di Gregorio)
Sheriff Roger – Bo Svenson (Boris Svenson)
Rusty – Raimund Harmstorf
Sheena/Sheila – Karen Reel
Thomas – William Rice
With: Clayton Tevis, Vic Roych (Victor Roych), Bill Rossly (William Rossly), Mike Bower (Michael Bower), Rex Blackwell, Dennis O’Reilly, Darla Porter, Allan Jin, A.C. Navarro, Charles Hunter, Frank Soto, William Timothy Soto
Stunts: Rex Blackwell, Alain Petit [stunt coordinator]


Luis Martinez, called " Thunder ", an Indian enrolled in the police force, in a small town in Arizona, among his colleagues is Deputy Sheriff Rusty. The two have had disagreements in the past, and old grudges resurface. Rusty is at the center of a drug trafficking racket and, scared by the presence of "Thunder",  is assigned to patrol the area where these trades take place. Rusty accuses Thunder, with false evidence, of the murders of Max, a drug trafficker in business with Rusty, who was killed by them in his car. "Thunder", despite the involvement of the lawyer Tomas Ruder, is sentenced to five years' hard labor, to be served in a field where he is subjected to continuous abuse. After having spent eleven days locked in a metal box, miraculously manages to escape. He takes refuge in the mountains, where he is joined by his wife, who is expecting their first child, and who has contacted the lawyer to reopen the trial where he was convicted unjustly. But Rusty is on his trail, and using a helicopter, strikes the car of "Thunder". In the incident the woman loses her baby and "Thunder" swears revenge. Starting a war , like the old Indians, he puts war paint on his face and carries a hatchet . Having knocked out all surveillance, "Thunder" arrives at Rusty’s cell where he is waiting to be tried for his criminal activities, but, coming face to face with his rival, does not dare to kill him. Thunder reaches the border with a car, thanks to the complicity of the sheriff, "Thunder" crosses the border and escapes into Mexico.
 
YouTube trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zr85KzxSDX0

Remembering Heinz Gietz


Heinz Gietz was born on March 31, 1924 in Frankfurt, Main, Germany. At the age of 11, he took his first violin lessons. The music was in his blood and so two years later he began taking piano lessons. At 14 he made ​​his first steps as a composer and arranger.
 
From 1941 he attended the Conservatory in Frankfurt where he gained first experiences with jazz by Carlo Bohländer and Emil Mangelsdorff. In 1943 he was summoned to the labor service, and is drafted into the Wehrmacht. Heinz Gietz founded his own quartet in 1945 and worked as a jazz musician in the combo of The Hotclub Frankfurt. His first composition he wrote in 1946 for the "Little Theatre" and was received in the same year in the STAGMA (later GEMA). After the currency reform of 1948, he worked mainly as a composer and arranger for the Hessian Radio and other broadcasters.
 
In 1949 appears the first record with the Heinz Gietz composition "Scharfe Kurven". His first "hit" arrangement was in 1951 with “Das machen nur die Beine von Dolores”. A year later, his composition "Blumen für die Dame" is sung by Gitta Lind and became his first hit. With a new discovery called Caterina Valente in 1953 his first test shots Südwestfunk in Baden-Baden are made. In the same year a long and highly successful collaboration with the lyricist and producer Kurt Feltz starts. Heinz Gietz composed and arranged from 1954, the hits “O Mama, o Mama, o Mamajo” and “Baio Bongo” for Caterina Valente.
 
During the next 10 years Gietz continued to turn out hits for such artists as Valente, Bill Ramsey and Chris Howland. In 1963 Gietz becomes the musical director of "The Peter Weck Show" for ARD television. He also penned the love theme, for the film "Der Musterknabe", sung by Conny Froboess and Peter Alexander.
 
In 1965, he starts his own record label "Cornet- Records ". He is also musical director of the downstream television series "Sing ein Lied mit Onkel Bill" and writes the music for three Euro- western films "Massacre at Marble City" (1964), "Count Bobby, the Terror of the West" (1965)  and "The Man Called Gringo" (165). The Cornet label will be decommissioned in 1977 and Gietz began working again as a freelance producer for the EMI Electrola.
 
In 1980 Gietz composed, arranged and produced "Catherine and Potemkin". Gietz worked during the following years for various television shows, such as "Glücksspirale" and is also the musical director of the series "Wie wär’s heut mit Revue?" with Harald Juhnke and Ingrid Steeger.
 
Gietz died on December 24, 1989 in Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. He was only 65 years-old.
 
Today we remember Heinz Gietz on what would have been his 90th birthday.

Remembering Tina Pica

Concetta Annuziata ‘Tina’ Pica was born on March 31, 1884 in Naples, Compania, Italy. Tina was an Italian supporting actress who played character roles on stage. Her debut in films was with “Il cappello a tre punte” (1934) when she was 50 years old. At 69 years of age, she becomes a celebrity with her role as ‘Caramella’ in a series of successful films “Pane, amore e fantasia” (1953), “Pane, amore e gelosia” (1954), “Pane, amore e...” (1955), “Pane, amore e Andalusia” (1958) and,” Pane, amore e così sia” (that was never completed).
 
Tina appeared in only one Euro-western “The Sheriff” (1959) where she starred in the role of Sheriff Carmela Esposito.
 
She was the author of several plays, sometimes written in tandem with her second husband Vincenzo Scarano.
 
Pica died of Alzheimer’s disease on July 26, 1968 at the home of her nephew in her hometown of Naples, Italy.
 
Today we remember Tina Pica on what would have been her 130th birthday.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

RIP Kate O'Mara


British actress Kate O'Mara (Frances M. Carroll), once as ubiquitous on British television screens as the test card, has died aged 74. She played a procession of glamorously tough cookies in television soaps and dramas, all menace, narrowed eyes and tossing red hair – most famously in the long-running US series ‘Dynasty’, as the manipulative Cassandra 'Caress' Morrell, sister of Alexis Colby played by Joan Collins. She also appeared as another schemer in ‘Howards' Way’, the BBC's attempt to rival the glamour of Dynasty and Dallas.
 
Kate appeared in two Euro-westerns “The Desperados!” in 1969 and “Cannon for Cordoba” in 1970.

Spaghetti Western Locations

We complete our search for filming locations for “Return of the Seven”. The mercenaries only make it back to the fountain in front of the church. Here they make their final stand against Lorca and his men. Manuel comes to their aid by throwing stick of dynamite at Lorca’s vaqueros. Finally Lorca is shot and his lieutenant Lopez sees the futility of continuing and call off the rest of the men and they ride away. Chris approaches Lorca and takes away his empty gun and the padre gives Lorca his last rights. Chris finds that Manuel, Delgado and Frank have been killed in the attack. Along with Vin and Colbee, Chris and Chico return to the village with all the men.


A modern community now occupies the sight of the abandoned village and church in Agost.

 
For a more detailed view of this site and other Spaghetti Western locations please visit my friend Captain Douglas’ excellent website: http://www.western-locations-spain.com                                
and Yoshi Yasuda’s location site: http://y-yasuda.net/film-location.htm                 
 
[Captain Douglas has dedicated and entire section of his website to “The Return of the Seven” with behind the scenes photos and stories, highly recommended.]


50 Year Anniversary of Esplugas City

Esplugues remembers its golden years as the home of the 'spaghetti western'
 
The Film Studio Balcazar welcomed the filming of fifty Westerns in the 1960s, until a minister for Franco ordered its demolition.


Almeria was not the only home for Spanish Spaghetti westerns. Catalonia also had a small set, located in the metropolitan area, although there is almost no sign of the location today, neither the physical space or in the collective cultural memory. “$5,000 on One Ace”, “A Pistol for Ringo”, “Oklahoma John” are some western movies that were filmed here during the 1960s in the village known as Esplugas City, a huge set built by the Film Studio Balcazar in Esplugues de Llobregat. The company was one of the most important of its time, I had a studio shoot in the same city, playing Cornella, and looked for a site on which to record the exterior.
 
"It was a genuinely American western genre, but the Balcazars were responsible for a new vision and were the foundation for the genre growing in Europe," recalls Juan Salvador, Esplugues neighbor who knew firsthand the town and author of Beyond Esplugas City. Those responsible for the Theatrical Productions of Balcazar were Alfonso, Francisco and Jaime Jesus brothers detected the potential importance of having a set to shoot films known as spaghetti westerns, set in the Wild West but filmed in Europe, as it would lower the recording costs.

Time proved them right and in fact after Esplugas City of Oste, three villages were built in the desert of Tabernas Almeria: Fraile (1965), Juan Garcia (1966) , and in the town of Tecisa Gergal (1966).
 
This year is the 50th anniversary of the building of the town which will be celebrated. "We want to remember from a recreational standpoint," explains Councillor for Culture, Eduard Sanz, who recalls that the council has commissioned the Council of Nens proposing activities to raise awareness of this heritage city.
 
The Balcazars had no relationship with Esplugues but the fire at the facilities used in the mountains of Montjuïc of Barcelona and the inability to restore them made ​​them look for a new space in the Barcelona area. "The venue was placed in Esplugues where a studio with over 5,500 square meters of sets, and the sets that were recorded outside, with more than 10,000 square meters that used some fields," John recalls. In Esplugas City over forty buildings were recreated, from the saloon to the sheriff's office to the general store, barber, blacksmith, hotel, bank and church. Most of the buildings were complete while others were only built with the fronts and there was nothing inside.

Juan Salvador recalls that the village was in full swing between 1964 and 1967. "It rolled all day and even at night," he recalls, and notes that" the construction of the B-23 motorway meant the movement of the village and the construction of a much smaller set across the highway, where currently is the Mallola school."

 
Although the town was in the center of town, it was in an enclosed space that they could not access the neighbors." The economic relationship was anecdotal," says Councillor for Culture." I once walked through the Watcher precinct, as a retired policeman," explains John. The actors but not the workers mingled with the neighbors. Juan Salvador recalls," The company had a hotel in Barcelona where the actors, who moved to Esplugues studios for filming and then to Esplugas City to shoot were staying."
 
The operation of the system itself was a certain relationship with a company and the city, as did Figuls pastry candy with which the living room windows were built so they could break without actors suffering damage. "The students of the school Isidre Martí after school went to collect the remains of crystals and ate them like candy lollipops," says John, who recalls that some neighbors also worked as extras in some of the productions. The locals also lived with the noise form the shooting going on at Esplugas City.
 
The artistic director of the town, Juan Alberto Soler, also had to find resources to avoid the reality of the city that could sneak into the shootings. To do this, for example, he placed a tower with a large water tank to cover the antennas of buildings, or a fireplace two feet high to make sense of the smoke from the nearby pottery factory Pujol i Baussis, which had two chimneys which operated alternately.
 
The move to the new location, in the late 1960s, coincided with the decline of the genre, which revived the series after “They Call Me Trinity”. In the early 1970s, the Balcazar brothers, seeing the decline of the genre, tried to convert the set into a theme park, which would have been the first in Spain. They got the proper permits but they could not make it happen.




 
If fire was the end of the Balcazar studies in Barcelona, ​​it also did the same at Esplugues, albeit for different reasons. The Minister of Information and Tourism Alfredo Sánchez Bella Franco discovered the village one day accessed by car from Barcelona El Prat Airport. He considered that "it was a bad image" and ordered its dismantling. Given the high cost to demolish the town, the officers of the company decided to record one last film, “Now They Call Him Sacramento”, which ends with a fire that destroyed the entire town. "It was a spectacular fire that was recorded with three cameras, in case any failed, because it could not be repeated," John, who considered this a worthy way he remembers Esplugas City.
 

Saturday, March 29, 2014

THUNDER WARRIOR


Thunder - Italian title
Tonnerre – French title
Thunder – Eine Legende ist geboren! – German title
Thunder: I proti ekdikisi – Greek title
Grom – Polish title
A Fúria do Guerreiro – Portuguese title
Trueno – Spanish title
Thunder policia sin ley – Spanish title
Simsek – Turkish title
Navaho grom – Yugoslavian title
Thunder Warrior – English title
 
A 1983 Italian production [European International Film (Rome)]
Producer: Larry Ludman (Fabrizio De Angelis)
Director: Larry Ludman (Fabrizio De Angelis)
Story: David Parker, Jr. (Dardano Sacchetti)
Screenplay: David Parker, Jr. (Dardano Sacchetti), Fabrizio De Angelis
Cinematography: Federico Del Zoppo, Sergio Salvati [Telecolor]
Music: Francesco De Masi
Running time: 95 minutes
 
Cast:
Luis ‘Thunder’ Martinez – Mark Gregory (Marco di Gregorio)
Sheriff Bill Cook – Bo Svenson (Boris Svenson)
Deputy Barry Henson – Raymund Harmstorf (Raimund Harmstorf)
Sheila – Valeria Ross
Thomas – Antonio Sabato
Brian Sherman – Paolo Malco
Frank – Richard Harley (Bruno Corazzari)
Dancing Crow – Michele Mirabella
Thomas’ friends – Goffredo Unger, Nazzareno Zamperla
With: Giovanni Vettorazzo, Slim Smith, Ennio Brizzolari, Sergio Smacchi


A native America named Luis 'Thunder' Martinez returns to his Arizona home only to find that his ancestral burial ground is being destroyed by construction workers. He tries to put a stop to it, but the law is not only not on his side, but he is banished from town, beaten up, and left for dead. Now he seeks his revenge.
 
YouTube trailer link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VqdI_6_ahis

Happy 75th Birthday to Terence Hill


Mario Girotti was born on March 29, 1939 in Venice, Veneto, Italy. His mother, Hildegard (Thieme), was German, from Dresden, and his father, Girolamo Girotti, was an Italian chemist.
 
As a child, he lived in the small town of Lommatzsch, Germany from 1943 to 1945 during World War II, surviving the Dresden Bombing. After being discovered by Italian filmmaker Dino Risi for Vacanze col Gangster “Holiday with the Gangster” (1951) at the early age of 12, he had, after 27 movies in Italy including, a major role in Luchino Visconti's “The Leopard” (1963). In 1964, he returned to Germany and there appeared in a series of, adventure and western films, made from the novels of German author Karl May. In 1967, he returned to Italy to act in “God Forgives... I Don't!” (1968). He changed his name to Terence Hill the same year. The name was made up as a publicity stunt by the film producers; he had to choose from a list of twenty names and picked the one with his mother's initials.
 
In the following years, he starred in many action and over nineteen Spaghetti Westerns together with his longtime colleague and friend Bud Spencer. The pair were notable for their comedy films, successful not only in Italy, but also internationally. They made a large number of Italian Westerns and other films together. Many of these have alternate titles, depending upon the country and distributor. Their most famous film is the 1971 western “They Call Me Trinity” and the 1972 sequel “Trinity Is STILL My Name!”. Terence has stated in interviews that “My Name Is Nobody” (1973), in which he co-starred with Henry Fonda, is his personal favorite of all his films.
 
His first American films were “Mr. Billion” and “March or Die” (both 1977), after which he divided his time between Italy and the U.S.
 
Hill's adopted son Ross was killed in an accident in Stockbridge, Massachusetts in 1990 while the actor was preparing to film “Lucky Luke” on the Bonanza Creek Ranch near Santa Fe. Hill later went on to a successful television career in Italy.
 
In 2000, he landed the leading role in the Italian television series ‘Don Matteo’, as a crime fighting parish priest.
 
Terence and Bud Spencer were awarded the David di Donatello Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2010.
 
Today we celebrate Terence Hill’s 75th birthday.

Remembering Walter Wickenhauser


Walter Wickenhauser was born on March 29, 1929 in Czernowitz, Bukovina, Romania. Walter received his artistic training from 1947-1949 in Magdeburg, where he also debuts on stage. His debut was followed by appearances in Staßfurt, Altenburg, Gera, Cottbus and Senftenberg before returning to Magdeburg. His travels in the late 1970s led him to Berlin, where he played for a few years in the Theater der Freundschaft. With his striking, distinctive voice he became one of the most prominent voice actors of the DDR. Wickenburg played Howard in the DEFA Euro-western “Ulzana” (1974).
 
Also busy on radio, you can hear his voice also in various film and television productions. Wickenhauser, for example, was the father of the composer Franz Schubert in the TV movie " Leise flehen meine" documentary, and he shows up in series like " Neues übern Gartenzaun" and  " Bereitschaft Dr. Federau". For children's television you know him as the voice of the inventor Knollo from the " Spielhaus". Walter took a turn temporarily operating, a synchronous business, Wickenhauser then retired due to health reasons from his profession. Walter can be heard as the voice of Colea Rautu in Euro-western “Apaches” (1973).
 
He was married for almost thirty years with the actress Sabine Scharf before dying on September 27, 2002 in Berlin, Germany.
 
Today we remember Walter Wickenhauser on what would have been his 85th birthday.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Guess Who I Am



I’m an Italian actor.
 
I appeared in only three films all Euro-westerns.
 
All three were made in 1972-1973.
 
Guess who I am.

No one guessed this week's photo of Ivan Greeve.

Book Review

Directory of World Cinema: Germany 2.  Edited by Michelle Langford.  Published by Intellect.
 
Our own Lee Broughton has contributed an essay to this recently published volume.  Lee’s article offers an overview of the history and the ongoing development of the German Western and acts as an introduction to the book’s German Westerns reviews section (which features reviews of key titles that were produced in a number of different decades).  Lee also wrote three of these reviews (’The Treasure of Silver Lake’, ‘A Place Called Glory’ and ‘Apaches’).  The other titles reviewed are ’The Emperor of California’, ’The Desperado Trail’, ‘Flaming Frontier’, ’The Sons of Great Bear’, ‘Thunder at the Border’, ‘Chingachgook: The Great Snake’, ’Trail of the Falcon’, ‘Whity’ and ‘Manitou’s Shoe’.
 
All told, this book devotes 33 of its pages (some of which feature rare stills) to German Westerns.

Happy 75th Birthy Ilaria Occhini


Ilaria Occhini was born on March 28, 1934 in Florence, Tuscany, Italy. She debuted in film in “Terza liceo” under the name of Isabella Redi, then graduated from the National Academy of Dramatic Arts "Silvio D'Amico" in Rome. She soon established herself on television, directed by Anton Giulio Majano in the drama seriesL'Alfiere” and “Jane Eyre”, and debuted at the theater in 1957 with a role in “The Impresario of Smyrna”, by Carlo Goldoni, directed by Luchino Visconti , who later directed her in “A View from the Bridge” and “Figli d'arte”. Occhini appeared as Edith Wichett in the 1965 Euro-western “The Tramplers” starring Joseph Cotton and Gordon Scott.
 
During her career, she had great satisfaction working with artistic partners, in theater, with directors such as Orazio Costa and Giuseppe Patroni Griffi. On television she is best remembered for the five episode drama “The Andreana”, 1982, directed by Leonardo Cortese. Ilaria also starred in many films, but rarely as a leading lady, with her most successful role being in the comedy of Alessandro Benvenuti “Benvenuti in casa Gori” (1992), for which she won the Silver Ribbon for Best Actress in a Supporting Role.
Since 2005 she’s recaptured the attention of television audiences with the role of the mother of Veronica Pivetti for four seasons in the popular Rai 1 “Provaci ancora professor”, directed by Rossella Izzo. In 2008, she starred in “Mar Nero”, a film by Federico Bondi which earned several awards, including a David di Donatello nomination and winning the Golden Leopard for Best Actress at the International Film Festival of Locarno. In 2010 she won the David di Donatello for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in Ferzan Ozpetek's “Nastro d'Argento” and received the Silver Ribbon for her career.
 
Today Occhini has restored the family vineyards at their farm in Villa La Strip, of the sixteenth century on the hills around Arezzo, and in 2001 she decided to start making wine. She personally takes care of the farm, and an adjoining farm, with the help of her daughter Alexandra La Capria, an actress and screenwriter, born from her marriage with writer Raffaele La Capria, and grandchildren Catherine and Bernardino.
 
Today we celebrate Ilaria Occhini’s 80th birthday.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

New DVD Release


Django und die Bande der Bluthunde
(Dango the Bastard aka The Stranger’s Gundown)
(1969)
 
Director: Sergio Garrone
Starring: Anthony Steffen, Luciano Rossi, Paolo Gozlino
 
Label: Studiocanal
Country: Germany
Region: 2, PAL
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 (16:9), widescreen
Language: German Dolby Digital 2.0, Italian Dolby Digital 2.0
Subtitles: German
Runtime: 95 min
ASIN: B00HK4TT7E
Available: March 27, 2014

THUNDER OVER EL PASO


I senza Dio – Italian title
Yo los mato, tú cobras la recompensa – Spanish title
Il était une fois à El Paso – French title
Rache in El Paso – German title
Makrya ap' ton Theo – Greek title
Os sem Deus – Portuguese title
Minnesota Joe – Scandanavian title
Tuffingen fran El Paso – Swedish title
The Godless Ones – English title
Sentence of God – English title
Thunder Over El Paso – English title
 
A 1971 Italian, Spanish co-production [Luis Film (Rome), Dauro Film (Madrid)]
Producer: Luigi Mondello, Roberto Capitani
Director: Robert Bianchi Montero
Story: Maurizio Pradeaux
Screenplay: Arpad de Riso, Antonio Fos, Maurizio Pradeaux
Cinematography: Alfonso Nieva [Eastmancolor]
Music: Carlo Savina
Running time: 88 minutes
 
Cast:
Roy MacFallow ‘El Santo’ – Antonio Sabato
Jeff/Sam ‘Minnesota’ Lorregan – Chris Avram (Cristea Avram)
Janet/Jenny Barrett – Erika Blanc (Enrica Colombatto)
Sheriff Sam Hunter/Ware – Paul Stevens (Paolo Gozlino)
Barrett - Beny Deus (Venancio Mejuto)
Sarita/Anne – Pilar Velázquez (Pilar Llorente)
Corbancho – José Rivas Jaspe (José Rivas)
Priest/brother – Enzo La Torre
Inmate – Antonio Padilla
Hotel employee – Nino Musco
With: Ken Wood (Giovanni Cianfriglia), Alessandro Perrella, Franco Marletta (Francesco Marlett), Victor Israel (Josép Villanova), José Canalejas, Renato Pinciroli


In El Paso the outlaw Corbancho robs the local bank, for which a bounty of $15,000 is placed.
$400,000 is then robbed in Tucson: This robbery and the killing of the bank director, is blamed on Corbancho. Not everyone is of the same opinion, including the son of the murdered director, Roy MacFallow, also called El Santo for the number of criminals he’s killed, and the bounty hunter known as Minnesota. The series of murders that are taking place between EI Paso and Tucson has also interested Barrett, director of the banks together, his wife Jennifer and Sheriff Sam Huston. Minnesota, having run up gambling debts equal to the bounty placed on Corbancho, accepting a partnership with Roy, who’s interested in discovering the murderer of his father. The suspect is disfigured by a scar on his neck and was the intermediary between Corbancho and unknown principals. Sheriff Sam, with his friends will further his investigation and, imprison El Santo, however, he escapes with the help of a woman. This time the bounty hunter penetrate the lair and Corbancho and at the point of death, force him to reveal the names of the principals: Barrett, Jennifer, and a stranger. Tricking the couple, forcing them to run, along with Sam, to where the gold is hidden. The real culprits are eliminated and the gold is recovered, El Santo, satisfied for having recognized the murdererer Sam 's father ,Minnesota Killer says he always knew his true identity as he is an Agent of the Federal National Bank.
 
YouTube film clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcANsZzf_Bw

Book Review

Radical Frontiers in the Spaghetti Western: Politics, Violence and Popular Italian Cinema

Reviews:
 
'This is a major re-appraisal of a neglected set of 1960s films, films which become more and more interesting with the passing of the years. Fisher mounts a convincing case that these Italian Westerns, made in the wake of the success of Sergio Leone's films, managed to be popular and in their way serious, both at the same time, with their various perspectives on the Italian New Left. He takes us back to a time when action films had a point to them, beyond the action; when Westerns could be criticised in the press - in all seriousness - for following the fashion for student left-wing politics; and when Jean-Pierre Gorin, Jean-Luc Godard's creative partner, could say: 'every Marxist on the block wanted to make a Western'. Austin Fisher brilliantly evokes the atmosphere of those heady times.' – Sir Christopher Frayling, Professor Emeritus of Cultural History, Royal College of Art

 
'While maintaining the highest scholarly standards, Radical Frontiers is accessible to non-specialists in Italian studies or film studies, written in a clear and unfussy style, and full of fascinating and vivid insights on the interface of politics and popular culture in a turbulent and important moment in recent Italian history. Austin Fisher's grasp of the political complexion of this moment (on both sides of the Atlantic) is subtle and nuanced, while his close textual analyses are lucid and insightful. I cannot think of another book exactly like it: by which I mean not only the obvious point that there are no competing studies of the political Western, but that its deft interweaving of political theory, political history and critical analysis gives it a unique place within contemporary cultural studies.' – Barry Langford, Reader in Media Arts, Royal Holloway, University of London
 
Austin Fisher’s hardback book was too pricey for me at a list price of $105.00 it has been released as of today March 27th for under $24.00.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Happy 65th Birthday Sergio Leonardi

Sergio Leonardi was born on March 26, 1944 in Rome, Italy. Sergio began his singing career in the mid-1960s.
 
In 1967 comes ‘Non ti scordar di me’ which he sings participating in the Cantagiro and Festivalbar. 1969 is the year ofArrivederci a forse mai’, which was recorded for the summer, reaching the finals and finishing in eleventh place, followed by ‘Pulicinella’. In the same year he released his first album, which contains, in addition to his hits, re-interpretations of songs by other artists, likeIl mondo è grigio’, ‘Il mondo è blu’ by Nicola Di Bari
 
Another of his song ‘Whisky’, was chosen as the theme song for the television series of “Tenente Sheridan”, and years later will be included in the soundtrack of the 1975 movie “La donna della domenica” by Luigi Comencini (from the novel by Fruttero & Lucentini).
 
In 1970 he participated in the Sanremo Festival in a duo with Tony Renis singing ‘Canzone blu’.
 
His career continued to a lesser degree, in the 1970s, the decade in which he is also he began appearing in the cinema and often works in theater, participating in shows such as “Bagaglino”. Sergio made his only Euro-western appearance to date as Butch in “Silver Saddle” (1977) starring Giuliano Gemma.
 
In 1991 he released an album dedicated to reinterpretations of songs by Fred Hammond, and in 1999 a collection of his hits with new arrangements.
 
Today we celebrate Sergio Leonardi’s 70th birthday.

Happy 85th Birthday Charles Dumont


Charles Dumont was born on March 26, 1929 in Cahors, Lot, France. The son of a communist activist working for Latécoère in Toulouse where he lived in the neighborhood of Cote Pavee.
 
Until the 1960s, he composed, sometimes under pseudonyms, Dalida, Gloria Lasso, Luis Mariano and Tino Rossi. That's when he developed a collaboration with lyricist Michel Vaucaire. Together they wrote in 1956 ‘Non, je ne regrette rien’ recorded in November 1960 by Édith Piaf and ‘Mon Dieu’ in 1960. Following would be a large contribution to the repertoire of the singer with forty-one titles,Flonflons du Bal à Mon Dieu’ to ‘Les Amants’ Piaf and Dumont wrote and sang together in 1962. In 1963, he composed for her ‘Je m'en remets à toi’, with lyrics by Jacques Brel, the singer will die before he could record it. Charles Dumont recorded it in 1964. It was integrate in 2007 in the show "Piaf, I Love You ", performed at the Olympia (Paris) by singer Marie Orlandi.
 
Dumont also composed for television, ‘Michel Vaillant’ in 1967, and film, “Trafic” by Jacques Tati in 1971. That same year he met the American singer Barbra Streisand, who gets ‘Le Mur’ and a hit with the title ‘I've Been Here’. Dumont scored the 1968 Euro-western, “The Belle Starr Story” featuring the song ‘No Time for Love’ sung by Elsa Martinelli.
 
Charles started in the 1970s a more personal career and interprets his own compositions where love and women hold a special place: ‘Une chanson’ (1976) andLes amours impossibles’ (1978), both were gold records .
 
On March 28 and 29, 2004, Charles Dumont celebrated his 50-year career at the Bataclan in Paris.
 
Today we celebrate Charles Dumont’s 85th birthday.

Remembering Stelvio Massi


Stelvio Massi was born on March 26, 1929 in Civitanova Marche, Macerata, Italy. Considered one of the most representatives of the Italian police films, Massi studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome and later joined the faculty of architecture, leaving there to enter the world of cinema. He began working as an assistant camera operator. He later became director of photography, working in this role in more than forty films.
 
Massi was a cinematographer on over a dozend Euro-westerns including: “In the Shadow of a Colt” (1966), “15 Scaffolds for a Killer” (1968), “The Price of Power” (1969) and “Bullet for a Stranger” (1971).
 
In 1973 he made his debut as a director with the Euro-westernHallelujah to Vera Cruz”, using the alias Newman Rostel. In 1974 he directed three films: “Squadra volante”, his first detective film, starring Tomas Milian, “Macro” and “5 donne per l'assassino”. In 1975 he began the series “Mark il poliziotto”, starring Franco Gasparri. The series also includesMark il poliziotto spara per primo” and “Mark colpisce ancora”. In 1977 he returned to directing Milian in “La banda del trucido”, the second film in the series of “Er Monnezza”, started by Umberto Lenzi in 1976.
 
Between 1977 and 1980, Massi established a successful collaboration with actor Maurizio Merli, and directed six successful films. In 1978 he filmed the movie “Un poliziotto scomodo” partially filmed in Civitanova Marche, his hometown, to pay homage.
 
In the early 1980s, which marks the end of the golden age of the Italian police film, Massi directed Mario Merola dramatized in two films, “Torna” and “Guappa”, then Fabio Testi and Vittorio Mezzogiorno in two films about racing motorcycles and cars, “Speed ​​Cross” and “Speed ​​Driver”. In 1988 he also directed the movie “Mondo cane oggi - L'orrore continua”. In 1994 he directed his last film,Il quinto giorno” .
 
Massi died March 26, 2004, the same day he turned 75 years old.
 
Today we remember Stelvio Massi on what would have been his 85th birthday.

Remembering Strother Martin


Strother Martin, Jr. was born on March 26, 1919 in Kokomo, Indiana. The youngest of three children of Strother Douglas Martin, a machinist, and Ethel Dunlap Martin As a child Strother excelled at swimming and diving; he was nicknamed "T-Bone Martin" because of his diving expertise. At 17, he won the National Junior Springboard Diving Championship. He served as a swimming instructor in the United States Navy during World War II and was a member of the diving team at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He entered the adult National Springboard Diving competition in hopes of gaining a berth on the U.S. Olympic team but finished third in the competition.
 
He moved to California to become an actor, but worked in odd jobs and as a swimming instructor to Marion Davies and the children of Charles Chaplin. He found work as a swimming extra in several films and as a leprechaun on a local children's TV show, "Mabel's Fables." Bit parts came his way, leading to television work with Sam Peckinpah, which led to a lifelong relationship. He also found memorable roles for John Ford and by the 1960s was a familiar face in American movies. With “Cool Hand Luke” (1967) in 1967 came new acclaim and a place among the busiest character actors in Hollywood. Martin is remembered for such films as “True Grit”, “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” and “The Wild Bunch” (all 1969),The Great Scout & Cathouse Thursday” (1976). He worked steadily and in substantial roles throughout the 1970s and seemed at the peak of his career when he died suddenly of a heart attack in 1980.
 
Martin appeared in only one Euro-western: “Hannie Caulder” (1970) as Rufus Clemens.
 
Strother died of a heart attack on August 1, 1980.
 
Today we remember one of the great character actors in Hollywood history Strother Martin on what would have been his 95th birthday.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

New DVD Release


Those Dirty Dogs / Wanted
(1974 / 1967)
 
Directors: Giuseppe Rosati / Giorgio Ferroni
Starring: Gianni Garko, Stephen Boyd / Giuliana Gemma, Teresa Gimpera
 
Label: Wild East
Country: U.S.A.
Volume 47 #WE056
Region: 0, NTSC
Aspect Ratio: Anamorphic, 16:9, widescreen
Audio: English Dolby Digital 2.0
Running time: ?
Extras: Teresa Gimpera interview, photo gallery, Italian, English trailers
Available March 25, 2014

THUNDER AT THE BORDER


Winnetou und sein Freund Old Firehand – German title
Vinnetou a Old Firehand – Yugoslavian title
Trovoes na fronteira – Brazilian title
Gringo – hævneren – Danish title
Ukkosata rajalla – Finnish title
Tonnerre sur la frontière – French title
Masacre a la frontiere – French title
O keravnos me to hryso pistol – Greek title
Winnetou és barátja, Old Firehand – Hungarian title
Tempesta all frontiera – Italian title
Winnetou i Old Firehand – Polish title
Tempestade na fronteira – Portuguese title
Trovoes na fronteira -
Hombres desperados – Spanish title
Tormenta en la frontera – Spanish title
Död åt gringos – Swedish title
Winnetou: Thunder at the Border – U.K. title
Thunder at the Border – U.S.A. title
 
A 196 West German, Yugoslavian co-production [Rialto Film, Preben-Philipsen (Berlin), JadranFilm (Zagreb)]
Producers: Horst Wendlandt, Preben Philipsen
Director: Alfred Vohrer
Story: Karl May
Screenplay: David De Reske, Harald G. Petersson, C.B. Taylor
Cinematography: Karl Löb [Technicolor, Ultrascope]
Music: Peter Thomas
Running time: 100 minutes
 
Cast:
Old Firehand – Rod Cameron (Nathan Cox)
Winnetou – Pierre Brice (Pierre Baron de Bris)
Nscho-tschi – Marie Versini
Tom – Todd Armstrong (John Armstrong)
Silers – Harald Leipnitz
Robert Ravenhurst – Viktor de Kowa (Viktor Kowarzik)
Michele Mercier – Nadia Gray (Nadia Kujnir-Herescu)
Captain/Sergeant Mendoza – Rik Battaglia
Jace Mercier – Jörg Marquardt
Caleb – Vladimir Medar
Captain Luis Sanchez Quilvera – Miha Baloh (Mihail Baloh)
Derks – Aleksandar Gavric
Puglia – Emil Kutijaro
Moses – Ilija Ivezic
Leon Mercier – Dusan Antonijevic
Billy-Bob Silers – Walter Wilz
Vince – Milan Bosiljcic
German-Joe – Aleksandar Stojkovic
German Joanna – Tana Mascarelli (Tanja Ostojic)
Hernando – Aleksandar Belaric
German-Joanna – Maija Crnobori
Julia – Adela Podjed
Priest – Boris Dvornik
Callaghan – Dado Habazin (Marijan Habazin)
Wirz – Nikola Gec
Metz – Emil Mikuljan (Milan Mikuljan)
Wallace – Stjepan Spoljaric
Kaylurr – Ivo Kristof
Lem – Franc Ursic
Officers – Jovan Vukovic, Zvonko Dobrin (Zvonimir Dobrin)
Desperados – Sime Jagarinac (Simum Jagarinac), Stjepan Spoljaric, Josip Biščan
With: Valent Borovic, Valent Štefanko, Kreso Branković, Zvonimir Brcko, Antun Gorišek, Stjepan Hrgović, Esad Jujić, Zvonimir Kuzmić, Miroslav Šanić, Izidor Štefanko, Franjo Crnečki, Nikola Gec


Winnetou and his sister Nscho-chi along with several warriors of the Apache tribe are ambushed by Siler and his gang of bandits. The Indians obtain help from trappers Jason Waade, who is known as Old Firehand, Tom and his friends, Caleb and Moses.
 
Winnetou and Old Firehand have been involved in other disputes with Silers. His brother Billy Bob is sitting in the local jail, and Seargent Mendozza is harassed by local residents of Maramonte to release him in order to escape the vengeance Silers. Firehand is moved to help defend the village, not of the least because he has there met his old love Michèle, who has a son Jace from him, but does not know that Old Firehand is his father. Michèle is being courted by the eccentric English gentleman Ravenhurst, but has not yet yielded to his charms.
 
After Billy Bob Siler has been killed while attempting to escape, Silers slaughters a covered wagon train with local residents for revenge. He loads a wagon with dynamite and sends it back to Miramonte where it explodes.
 
Winnetou leaves to seek help from the army but meets Capitano Quilvera with his Mexican bandits who sets a trap, which Winnetou barely escapes. Quilvera and Silers team up and attack the town together. A priest who confronts them with a raised cross is shot by Silers against Quilveras protest.
 
The inhabitants fight back under the leadership of Old Firehand, and the attackers back away slowly. Winnetou sends dynamite laden horses into the bandits and blows them into the air. The rest of the bandits are taken care of by the inhabitants of the town who with Old Fiorehand by a surprise attack against Siler and Capitano Quilvera. Firehand and Tom pursue the fleeing Silers, who is mortally wounded by Siler and dies. Firehand is of the opinion that a bullet would be a shame for Silers, so he uses Winnetou's bow and arrow, with which he then pins Silers to a tree trunk before shooting him.
 
YouTube trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YKkoANdD9aQ

Remembering Pierre Cressoy


Pierre Jules Lazare Cressoy was born on March 25, 1924 in  Vendome, Loir-et-Cher, France. Cressoy began studying medicine because of his father's wish, but he dropped out after a year to become an actor. His debut in 1944 in Jean Racines Andromaque stage troupe was followed by four years until he went to work for director Léon Mathot inLa dernière chávauchée” his first leading roll.
 
He went on to appear in leading roles of melodramas and biographies, with occasional engagements in Hollywood productions. In the 1960s he moved on to father roles and often as criminals. He appeared six Euro-westerns in the mid-1960s in patriarchal roles such as “Lost Treasure of the Aztecs” (1964), “Adios Gringo”, “Blood for a Silver Dollar” (both 1965) and probably his best remembered role as Doctor Chester Lynne in 1966’s “Navajo Joe”. He was usually credited as Peter Cross.
 
Privately, he was associated a long time with his fellow actress Hélène Rémy, after the breakup of the relationship, he married Françoise Mafranc , and the marriage lasted until his death on October 31, 1980 from cancer.
 
Today we remember Pierre Cressoy on what would have been his 90th birthday.

Remembering Nikša Fulgosi


Nikša Fulgosi was born on March 25, 1919 in Split, Croatia, Yugoslavia. During his high school and college days in Zagreb, Nikša wrote many stories and crime adventure novels. He worked as a sports journalist in the Croatian daily sports and illustrated news. In 1944 he was awarded second prize for the screenplay film comedy "Osmi smrtni grijeh". He became a screenwriter and director of documentary films for Jadran film, and  he did a series of commissioned economicaly commercial films, produced during the 1950s and 1960s. He directed and wrote the screenplay for a comedy film "Little Jole" in 1955, which remains unfinished. As a writer and director he created a series of programs for Zagreb TV. He was co-director of the Euro-western “The Deserter” with Burt Kennedy. Fulgosi most likely directed scenes with the Yugoslavian actors.
 
Fulgosi died in Croatia on September 30, 1996.
 
Today we remember Nikša Fulgosi on what would have been his 95th birthday.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Who Are Those Gals? - Honor Blackman


 
Honor Blackman was born in Plaistow, Newham, London, England on August 22, 1925. Her father Frederick was a statistician. She attended North Ealing Primary School and Ealing County Grammar School for Girls. On her 15th birthday, her parents gave her acting lessons and she started training at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 1940. While attending the Guildhall School, Blackman worked as a clerical assistant for the Home Office.
 
Blackman's film debut was a nonspeaking part in “Fame is the Spur” (1947). Other films include “Quartet” (1948), “So Long at the Fair” (1950), “A Night to Remember” (1958), “The Square Peg” (1958), “Life at the Top” (1965), “The Virgin and the Gypsy” (1970), and her only Euro-western “Shalako” (1968) with Sean Connery and Brigitte Bardot and “Something Big” (1971).
 
Blackman played Hera in “Jason and the Argonauts” (1963). In the same film she also performed an overdub, providing the voice for the character of Medea. She had roles in the films “Bridget Jones's Diary” and “Jack Brown and the Curse of the Crown” (both 2001).
 
Albert R. Broccoli said that Blackman was cast opposite Sean Connery in the James Bond films based on her success in the British TV series, ‘The Avengers’. He knew that most American audiences would not have seen the program. Broccoli said, "The Brits would love her because they knew her as Mrs. Gale, the Yanks would like her because she was so good, it was a perfect combination".
 
During the 1960s, Blackman practiced judo at the famous Budokwai dojo. This helped her prepare for her roles as Cathy Gale in ‘The Avengers’ and Pussy Galore in “Goldfinger”. She was the first of two "Bond girls" who were older than the actor playing James Bond, and the oldest actress to play a Bond girl.
 
In 1981, Blackman appeared in the London revival of “The Sound of Music” opposite Petula Clark. The production opened to rave reviews and the largest advance sale in British theatre history to that time. She spent most of 1987 at the Fortune Theatre starring as the Mother Superior in the West End production of “Nunsense”. Blackman returned to the theatre in 2005, touring through 2006 with a production of “My Fair Lady”, in which she played Mrs. Higgins. She developed a one-woman show, “Word of Honor”, which premiered in October 2006. In April 2007, Blackman took over the role of Fraulein Schneider in “Cabaret” at the Lyric Theatre in London's West End. She left the show at the end of September 2007.
 
Blackman started acting in a TV production in a recurring role as Nichole, secretary/assistant to Dan Dailey's character of Tim Collier in the 1959 series ‘The Four Just Men’. Blackman co-starred with Richard Basehart as a married pair of Shakespearean actors who commit a homicide in the ‘Columbo’. In December 1969 and in February 1993, Blackman was taken by surprise as the subject of ‘This Is Your Life’. In 1986, she had a role in "Terror of the Vervoids", a segment of the ‘Doctor Who’ serial ‘The Trial of a Time Lord’. From 1990 to 1996, she appeared as Laura West on ‘The Upper Hand’. In 2003, Blackman took a guest role on ‘Midsomer Murders’, as ex-racing driver Isobel Hewitt in the episode "A Talent for Life". In September 2004, she briefly joined the ‘Coronation Street’ cast in a storyline about wife swapping. In 2007, she participated in the BBC TV project, ‘The Verdict’. In 2013 Honor guest-starred in the BBC medical drama ‘Casualty’ and in ‘By Any Means’.
 
Blackman's recording with Patrick Macnee of "Kinky Boots" (1964), was a surprise hit. In 1990 it peaked at No.5 after being played incessantly by BBC Radio 1 breakfast show presenter Simon Mayo. After her appearance in Goldfinger, she recorded a full album of songs, entitled Everything I've Got. In 1983, Blackman sang as Juno in a special TV production of Jacques Offenbach's ‘Orpheus in the Underworld’. On 6 July 2009, Blackman released a new single, "The Star Who Fell from Grace", composed by Jeff Chegwin and Adrian Munsey. In it she compared a James Bond prom as part of the "Welsh Proms" concert series.
 
Blackman married twice: Bill Sankey from 1948–56. After their divorce, she married British actor Maurice Kaufmann [1927-1997] (1961–75). They appeared together in the slasher film Fright (1971). They adopted two children, Lottie (1967) and Barnaby (1968).
 
Blackman has not remarried and has stated she prefers being single. She enjoys watching football. She declined a CBE honor in 2002.
 

BLACKMAN, Honor [8/22/1925, Plaistow, Newham, London, England, U.K. -     ] – stage, TV, voice actress, married to William ‘Bill’ E. Sankey (1948-1956), actor Maurice Kaufmann [1927-1997] (1961-1975), mother of adopted children Lottie Kaufmann [1967-    ], Barnaby Kaufmann [1968-    ]
Shalako - 1968 (Lady Julia Dagget)