AKA FROM MAN TO MAN (Da Uomo a Uomo)
The original Italian title might be a little more appropriate, as Lee Van Cleef and John Phillip Law are two men converging on their respective paths of revenge. DEATH RIDES A HORSE could be slapped on most westerns, after all, but in this case, the film is badass enough to own its badass title.
The last leg of the film, where our gunslingers teach some Mexican villagers how to defend themselves, comes in too late to have much impact and feels perfunctory; like someone felt the story had to check a “rise-up” box. Should have just told the townsfolk to hide in the hills, Law and Van Cleef don’t need help!
I do appreciate the twist, which I won’t spoil. It would have still been a pretty good revenger without it, but the moral complexity it adds, is why this is one of my favourite non-Leone Italo-westerns.