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The plot of A MAN CALLED DJANGO! is a spaghetti western staple: the revenge1PJGf3VtigrSiZdmqKJ2Cz8Zp2j story. Django(Anthony Steffen) is looking for four men who’d hit his ranch, robbing and killing his wife(rape had been planned until she grabbed a gun). He’d been hunting for a year. He had one name: Carranza(Stelio Candelli). It’s never explained how he got that name, supposedly one of the four men who killed his wife. In the year he’d been looking for Carranza, he;d come across a newspaper article about the Mexican’s prison break. Two days after his wife’s murder! But he was known to be part of the gang. Again no mention of how he knew that.

190px-W_Django02Django walks into a town carrying his saddle over the right shoulder and a Winchester in his left. Strangely deserted, he meets Paco(Donato Castellaneti), the local bartender, who tells him outlaws keep taking over the town, first an American bunch, then a Mexican bunch. the honest people hd left. Paco was the only one left.

The film has comic relief in several spots. One outlaw up on a tower likes to taunt Paco with pieces of dynamite. While Django is talking to the bartender, he tosses one at his fee. Here we see hallmark cool spaghetti western hero who bends down, picks the dynamite up, and uses the sputtering fuse to light a cigar before tossing it back. The fellow spends the next fifteen minutes staggering around toting Django’s saddle, blackened and smoking, looking for a saloon. Another time, it’s almost a Keystone Cops feel in onemovieposter segment chasing around town looking for Django.

Django learns Carranza is about to be hung for horse thievery by Jeff(Chris Avram), leader of the current gang in charge of the town. So naturally he has to help him escape, dressed as a priest there to administer comfort to the man about to die.

The pair team up to pursue the four men responsible for his wife’s murder. There’s also gunrunning in the mix, the greedy Carranza eager to cash in on the death of his old comrades.

A_Man_Called_Django-910124852-largeThis was an OK western, not great, and I saw the end coming a long time before our hero did. To much happened to give it away and Django was oblivious.

The story and script was by Nino Stressa and was directed by Edorado Mulargia. It-er-borrowed heavily from Sergio Leone’s westerns. Django carries a music box with his wife’s picture in it(Lee Van Cleef’s pocket watch in For A Few Dollars More), Carranza was definitely a more vicious Tuco(Eli Wallach, The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly), they even used Tuco and Whhitey’s(Eastwood) dodge of turning Carranza in for the reward, then helping him escape.
Not a great western, but I love these things.

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