Spaghetti Westerns

I have been watching lots of westerns lately. Maybe it is because this is a genre of which I am totally ignorant. It seems that many Germans are quite familiar with westerns, especially those spaghetti westerns from Sergio Leone, and when they reference them in casual conversation I just say, “Uh…Ja, klar”. Lately Karstadt has been having great deals on DVDs and a lot of them are classic westerns. I have in the past 2 weeks bought and watched “Fistful of Dollars”, “For a Few Dollars More” and “The Good, The Bad and The Ugly”. These are all from Sergio Leone and are among his first films, all starring Clint Eastwood. These are the films that made Hollywood take notice of Eastwood and made them realize that a western could be so much more than the scripted formula that was closely followed up until then. The first film from Leone I saw was “Once Upon a Time in the West”. This film is a masterpiece. I have studied film and cinema in school but rather than sound like a pretentious film student with analysis and BS, I’ll just say go get it and see it. Do it, do it.

From watching Eastwood’s performance in Leone’s films, I was curious to see what his Oscar award winning film “Unforgiven” was like. I was curious to see if he incorporated things he learned from Leone into the film. I can see a bit of that in there but he brings his own style into it as well.

It was not always easy to find these films. Some times the German titles are totally different from their English versions:
“The Good, The Bad and The Ugly” = “Zwei Glorreiche Halunken” literally “Two Glorious Scoundrels”
“Once Upon a Time in the West” = “Sing Mir das Lied von Tod” “Sing Me the Song of Death”
“Unforgiven” = “Erbarmungslos” “Merciless”

I think I’m gonna go out to a Kneipe now and enjoy a beer. Or two. Or five.