Don't the title of the list explain it well enough? This is a list of 200+ quality "short" films. Easy…
The movie that spawned a genre.
Django is a 1966 Italian spaghetti Western film directed by Sergio Corbucci and starring Franco Nero in the eponymous role. The film earned a reputation as being one of the most violent films ever made up to that point and was subsequently refused a certificate in Britain until 1993, when it was eventually issued an 18 certificate. Subsequent to this the film was downgraded to a 15 certificate in 2004. Although the name is referenced in over thirty "sequels" from the time of the film's release until the mid 1980s in an effort to capitalize on the success of the original, none of these films were official, featuring neither Corbucci nor Nero. Nero did reprise his role as Django in 1987's Django 2: Il Grande Ritorno (Django Strikes Again), in the only official sequel to be written by Corbucci.
A mildly sluggishly paced first half does almost nothing to dilute one of the all-time great movie heroes (complete with one of the all-time great movie hero theme songs).
What struck me this time around is how bifurcated Django the movie and Django the character are - in the first half, he's almost Batman-like, with his hat pulled over his eyes and dispassionately blowing people away with his pistol and then with (spoiler alert!) his machine gun. Then, he meets up with the Mexicans, his hat comes off, and all of a sudden he's a human being. It's a weird counterpoint to Eastwood's Man With No Name, and a dynamic I'd somehow not noticed before.
The sequence with Django taking back his gold is one of my favorite set-pieces ever, and a great example of the "cinema of process." And the whole movie takes place in a believably (but still entertainingly) scuzzy and evil world. Beautiful!
I don’t know if I can say anything coherent about Django, I’m too caught up staring into Franco Nero’s eyes (seriously, that man is soooo fine). The camera loves his eyes too, using them judiciously, withholding them until the most effective moments.
Django starts with an incredible image - the lone figure trudging across empty land, dragging a heavy coffin behind him, bringing death with him. That figure is an enigma, but the film gives just the right amount of information about him, at the right times.
The energy in the film is raw and explosive. There is a slow simmer that kept me intrigued. The villain is so bad, but not comically bad; rather, pure evil bad. A ballet…
DJANGO! OH-OH-OH, DJANGO!
YOU MUST GO ON! OH-OH-OH, DJANGOOOO!
Coolness on a plate. While the first third of this influential masterwork drags as much as the coffin Django carries with him, the rest of the film is absolute, unadulterated western nirvana. You've got France Nero staring at people in a way that only he and Clint Eastwood can do, you've got a seriously bad-ass machine gun, you've got dynamite, you've got ear-slicing, you've got prostitute mud-wrestling; it's all here.
I was surprised at how influential this actually turned out to be, and I'm fully satisfied. You can see where Tarantino got some of his inspiration for Django Unchained, especially in terms of soundtrack and the appearance of General Jackson's men (bag-heads!)
All in all, just awesome.
I can't stress enough how effective the soundtrack is in this, before Tarantino completely snatched up the entire thing. And if the main hero theme isn't your new party-crasher-as-party-savior entrance music, make it so immediately. I assure you, it will not leave the heads of the party casualties.
Over the weekend I had a long, rambling conversation with a friend of mine about the various merits of what we pejoratively called "trash cinema" (a term that covered everything from John Waters movies to Herschell Gordon Lewis gore-fests to whatever-sploitation films). He had taken offense to the less than glowing review that I had given Gregg Araki's The Doom Generation, and used this as a recrimination of my trash cinema bona fides. The argument eventually degraded (as such arguments tend to do) into a shouting match of "you don't get it/yes I do" and no progress was made whatsoever. But the conversation did make me think about my ever-shifting cinematic tastes, and whether I have somehow outgrown an appreciation…
Film #44 of No Rewatch November
Worst dub ever. Absolutely terrible. The badass factor of the film was victorious in the end though!
I'm convinced that there is a very dark movie somewhere in here. There were glimpses in the hand/horses scene which was fantastic. The dubbing ruined the seriousness of the movie but if I ever get my hands on an italian version I'm sure I'll love this movie.
A coffin-toting gunslinger is caught in the midst of a heated feud between the KKK and Mexican bandits. The film starts strong right out of the gate, but the second half meanders not knowing exactly what it should do. It's hard to be invested in characters we can't really care for. The level of violence in this film is astounding too - three years before "The Wild Bunch" became notorious for this same (larger, actually) level of violence. The film is really fun to look at though, and, if you don't take it too seriously, it is a real treat.
The first half of this film is pretty damn impressive. A mysterious stranger enters town dragging a coffin. He proves he can handle himself when he comes across some unsavoury types. This is your classic Western-movie badass and in that initial part of the film I was on the edge of my seat.
Then in second half the pacing just dropped straight down to a crawl. It's like the complete opposite of what you want from a movie really. The movie "Unforgiven" with Clint Eastwood does the complete opposite of this. "Unforgiven" starts off a bit meandering, with a load of different character milling around and then it all comes together for an exciting finale. Whereas "Django" starts absolutely brilliantly and then doesn't seem to know what to do next. At the beginning I wanted to know everything about the protagonist and by the end I had no interest at all.
It's a real pity.
My review is here:
Directed by Sergio Cobucci this film stars Fanco Nero, Loredana Nusciak, Eduardo Fajardo and Jose Bodalo. A former Union army officer dragging a coffin behind him rescues a woman from being killed by bandits.
The plot of this film pretty clearly takes it's inspiration from A Fistful of Dollars (1964) in large parts. What originality the film does offer is that it is more violent than most films made before it but to modern eyes the level of violence is nothing special. This is a pretty entertaining spaghetti western but it is not up to the standard of Sergio Leone.
It may not have the epic scale or originality of other spaghetti westerns, but it does have one of the coolest protagonists ever, more deaths than you can count, and quite possibly the most awesome final line I've ever heard in a film.
Django is a great Western. Franco Nero is a badass, the score/soundtrack is fantastic and the action scenes are awesome. Some people have called Tarantino's Django Unchained a remake of this film, but that's not at all accurate. Sure its main character has the same name, its a Western, and it uses some of the same music, but the stories are completely different. Anyways, Sergio Corbucci's Django is a fantastic film. It seems that when it comes to Spaghetti Western's Corbucci is the second best behind Leone. 8.5/10
In my opinion the original Django is the quentisential Spaghetti Western. The very recipe of how to do a Spaghetti Western right. Sergio Corbucci was the very master of the genre along with Leone. Everything is there. The mysterios main characters with a unknown background were getting to know through his interaction with the rest of the characters. The typical Spaghetti Western cinematography (awesome more creative movement of the camera, often long distance shots of extreme closeups in order to build tension and atmosphere. The typical spaghetti western music, here made by the great Luis Bacalov we have the great opening tune plus all of the other great pieces of the soundtrack who serves the movie in a major way.…
- My Neighbor Totoro
- Grave of the Fireflies
- Final Cut - Ladies & Gentlemen
- For All Mankind
- The Brood
- Winter Light
- The Changeling
No idea if there is a list for this yet, but I think I will keep this as kind of…
- 21 Grams
- Johnny Got His Gun
- The Ugly Swans