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Execution Review

From The Spaghetti Western Database

Execution

Execution Poster1.jpg
EXECUTION (1968)
Cast:
  • Piero Vida
  • Nestor Gray
  • Franco Giornelli
  • Rita Klein

Music:

Director:

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With his previous Spaghetti Western, Hate for Hate, Domenico Paolella brought a well plotted and emotionally involving Revenge film to the genre. His next film, Execution, is a bit of a step in the wrong direction. Though it does have its redeeming qualities. Bill Coler, a circus performer and Clint Chips, a bounty hunter, are captured by a gang of Mexican bandits. The bounty hunter and the bandits are both looking for John Coler, Bill's identical brother (not twin though). The bounty hunter is after John's reward and the bandits are after some hidden gold he has. After Bill and Clint escape, it's a race to get to Harlem, the Ghost Town John is staying in.

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As noted, this film is a bit of a mixed bag. Pretty much in all departments. The first 50 minutes of the film are a stupid Rat Race style film that feels very strange. But at about that 50 minutes, the film gets much more interesting. But a lame and confusing ending spoil any chances for the plot to work. The directing is equally mixed. A scene early in the film with two characters engaging in feats of weapon skills and eventually shooting each other could have been a great scene. But after we learn these two enemies were just circus showmen, it feels like a lost opportunity. It's still an ok directed scene. The torture scenes are the most inventive and this is an area in which I liked the film. The Mexican bandit leader tends to use a mace to get his victims to talk. An absurd but fun idea that works only in Spaghetti Westerns. There are some other good ideas. Such as the finale gunfight between Bill and the Mexicans with Bill hiding in the attic of the saloon shooting from guns he has rigged through holes in the ceiling with rope attached to them to fire multiple guns at once. A well filmed scene with good ideas. (As a side note, John Richardson seems to break our famed Revolver record of firing past 6 shots. He gets off something like 16-18 shots before reloading!)

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The film's biggest problem is its complete and utter lack of character development or characterization. Richardson's hero(s) is a lifeless and boring anti hero who only expresses emotions in the most basic and theatrical way with the least amount of complexity in his character. In the film, Richardson plays the dual roles of the brothers. It must have been difficult for him to not only act two different parts requiring to adapt different personas. And his only real costar is himself. And I'd also say he has no chemistry with himself. Mimmo Palmara has probably the best role as the bounty hunter Chips. But his character is killed off halfway through the film. Another half assed attempt at characterization, still.


Good luck trying to figure out the whole plot. It seems simple but several unnecessary scenes added in do absolutely nothing for the film but make things more confusing. Mainly the end of the film. However, in the Spaghetti West, you learn to overlook such minor details as coherent plots and reality. The film was among the first of several Westerns to be shot in Israel. Looking similar to Almeria, the Israeli locations are believable. The only probem I had with them is that they're just very boring locations. Completely lacking the "charm" of Southern Spain. The film's main theme is the tune you'll immediately identify with Demofilo Fidani who used the theme to this film in seemingly all his film's trailers. That dreaded multiple trumpet riding theme.


I watched an English fandub from Cinemageddon acquired through a forum trade. The Koch video was used with some unknown English audio source. So unless you're a member at Cinemageddon, have fun digging up an English copy of this mediocre little film.

--Korano 18:11, 30 August 2010 (UTC)


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