This week’s Moviedrome Monday entry is a double bill consisting of two very different kinds of westerns. In this case, it would be the spaghetti western and an anthology horror western.
I have posted a youtube video link below to Moviedrome presenter Alex Cox’s introduction to Italian director Sergio Corbucci’s 1966 iconic spaghetti western Django. Readers can also read Cox’s intro transcript here. The episode’s original airdate was August 1, 1993 (read here). As usual, Cox gives another eloquent introduction. Not unlike his intro to Corbucci’s The Great Silence (shown on Moviedrome back in 1990), it is fascinating to hear everything about how this spaghetti western was made to it’s release history. I too agree that Django tops all of the other Yojimbo imitations, which include fellow Italian director Sergio Leone’s A Fistful of Dollars from two years earlier in 1964. Though Cox does not outright say it, I too would rank Corbucci higher than Leone in the pantheon of the great directors of spaghetti westerns. If any of you readers are interested, here is a link to my favorite Sergio Corbucci films (read here).
Here is a youtube video link to Moviedrome presenter Alex Cox’s intro to Django
Here is a youtube video link to what may be the US trailer for the film
Here is a youtube video link to what may be the film’s Italian trailer
Here is a youtube video link of British film critic Mark Kermode talking about it as one of his BFI player choices of the week
Here is a Spaghetti Western Database (SWDb) link to Alex Cox’s 20 favorite ones in the sub-genre (NOTE: I have seen most, but not all of these titles)
Here is an Amazon link to learn more about Alex Cox’s take on the spaghetti western in his 2009 book 10,000 Ways to Die: A Director’s Take on the Spaghetti Western
Grim Prairie Tales (1990)
Since I could not find a youtube video link of Moviedrome presenter Alex Cox introducing director Wayne Coe’s 1990 independent cult horror western Grim Prairie Tales, readers will have to rely on Cox’s intro transcript here. The episode’s original airdate was August 1, 1993 (read here). Once again, I nod in agreement with Cox. While far from a great or very good anthology horror film, it is nevertheless a good one overall. As Cox so eloquently implies though, it is Janusz Kaminski’s cinematography and the presence of it’s two lead actors (James Earl Jones and Brad Dourif) that really stand out. Aside from VHS, Grim Prairie Tales has (to the best of my knowledge) never been given a Blu-Ray/DVD release (or at least here in the US), nevertheless, I did watch it on youtube awhile back (click here).
Here is a youtube video link to the film’s original theatrical trailer