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|English Title||Why Kill Again ?|
|Director||Jose Antonio De La Loma|
|Screenplay||Glen Vincent Davis|
|Music||Felice Di Stefano|
|Cast||Anthony Steffen , Evelyn Stewart , Aldo Berti
, Pepe Calvo ,
Hugo Blanco , Jose Torres , Franco Pesce
The Macdougalls and the Lopezs hate each other. No one knows who started it, when or why, but the feud goes on. When Stephen Macdougall's father is killed on Lopez seniors orders- shot thirteen times whilst tied to a tree-, Stephen(Anthony Steffen) deserts from the army to sort out the business. Thesituation is complicated by the fact that Lopez's daughter adores him and wants to replace the killing with something a lot more pleasant. Worse still the US army are less than impressed with his AWOL act and promptly send a unit to arrest him. Stephen kills Manual Lopez, the favourite son. Lopez senior hires gunmen, kidnaps Stephen's sister (Evelen Stewert alias Ida Galli) and generally takes the matter even more personally than usual. Meanwhile his family starts to self destruct. Lopez is killed by one of his other sons. His daughter is killed for objecting and dies in Stephen Macdougall's arms. Finally Stephen overcomes the surviving the Lopez's with the help of one of their less than willing henchmen, who, ironically, was a member of the firing squad that killed his father. The Army arrests him, but not, we're assured for long. Why Go On Killing? Well it's a Spaghetti Western is the short answer, and one of the more melodramatic examples of the genre. From the opening scene when old Macdougall is dragged through the streets under a sombre De Stefano score to the closing shoot-out, this is a film that knows its mood and that mood is black as pitch. There's something distinctively and satisfyingly Latin about the whole opus.
Despite the feud plot the film isn't remotely neutral where the two families are concerned. The Lopezs are clearly portrayed as the more vicious of the two, happily murdering their business partners, each other and members of the US army who, understandably begin to feel that the deserting Stephen might have a point. The only redeeming member is the lovestruck daughter whose infatuation with Stephen is perhaps the weakest part of the plot. She's hot one minute, and hatefully cold the next. As a story element she basically gets in the way of the action which is otherwise well paced and full of demonic set pieces. A highlight is Stephen's despatch of the hired guns sent after him. In true macho style they posingly shoot up bottles to impress their intended victim. Stephen lobs a bottle in the air and invites them to watch it. They do whilst he guns them down, neatly subverting one of more tiresome clich of the genre.
This is a predominantly Spanish production- the Italian company is in there for the money. Most of the investment muscle comes from the Balcazar studios, an immense power in the Spanish film industry at the time who also, conveniently owned a chain of cinemas and generally planted family members all over their production crews. An interesting question concerning this film is just who is actually the major creative force at work. Posters refer to it as an Edward G Muller (Edoardo Mulargia) film, directed by Jose De La Loma. Loma only directed one other film, Nevada/ Boldest Job In The West which is apparently nothing like this. Muller on the other hand was prolific if variable in quality, but consistently specialised in noirish atmosphere. There certainly is a great deal of Muller in this film and reputedly he served as uncredited co-director. Credit ought to be given however to writer Glen Vincent Davis (Vincenzo Mussolini). There's an interesting similarity between this film and May God Forgive You, I Won't, scripted and directed by Davis and marked by a similar grimness. Erratic story and creative puzzles apart, this is an interesting film with a great score (listen to the extracts). Anthony Steffen is his usual classy, suffering heroic, self and adds some dignity, as does Ida Galli. Be warned though- she suffers somewhat at the hands of the Lopez's. Arguably more than necessary.
|TOM SELDON email@example.com|
Friday, 19-Jun-98 22:16