Spaghetti Western Podcast

Quien Sabe

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Quien Sabe (Italy 1966 / Director: Damiano Damiani)

  • Runtime: 118 min (135 min ?)
  • Release Date: 7.12.1966

Also known as

A Bullet for the General (U.S.A.) | Gringo Desperados | Who Knows! | ¿Quien sabe? (Italy) | Uma bala par o gen Töte Amigo (Germany) | O Mercenário (Portugal) | El Chuncho (France) | El Chuncho, quién sabe? (Spain) | Yo soy la revolución (Spain) | Naurava Paholainen (Finland) | Töte Amigo (West Germany) | Uma Bala Para o General (Brazil) | Zlatni metak (Croatia) | För några smutsiga dollar (Sweden) | Viva Bandito | Gringo (Poland) | Kula dla generała (Poland) | Gunto Koyawo Saku (Japan)

Cast and crew

  • Cast: Gian Maria Volonté (El Chuncho), Lou Castel (Bill Tate/El Gringo/Nino), Klaus Kinski (El Santo), Martine Beswick (Adelita), Jaime Fernandez (General Elias), Andrea Checchi (Don Felipe), Spartaco Conversi (Cirillo), Joaquin Parra (Picaro), Jose Manuel Martin (Raimundo), Santiago Santos (Guapo), Carla Gravina (Felipe's wife), Aldo Sambrell (Lt. Alvaro Perada), Valentino Macchi (train engineer), Bianca Manini, Antonio Ruiz (Chico), Rufino Ingles, Damiano Damiani (journalist)
  • Story: Salvatore Laurani
  • Screenplay: Salvatore Laurani, Franco Solinas
  • Cinematography: Antonio Secchi (as Tony Secchi) [Technicolor, Techniscope 2,35:1]
  • Music: Luis Enriquez Bacalov
  • Song: "Ya me voy" sung by Ramon Mereles
  • Producer: Bianco Manini


During the height of the Mexican revolution a gang of bandits led by "El Chuncho" (Gian Maria Volonte) are stealing weapons and selling them on to the revolutions leader "General Elias" to aid the cause. During an attack the bandits are making on an armed train, the gang are unexpectedly helped by one of its passengers, the gringo "Bill Tate" (Lou Castel) who kills the driver and stops the train. "Tate" convinces the bandits he is a wanted man facing a death sentence in America. "Chuncho" takes an immediate liking to the young gringo and the gang agree to him joining them. The bandits weapon stealing exploits are greatly improved with the gringo aboard and the friendship between him and "Chuncho" grows. But unknown to the bandits "Bill Tate" has another agenda, one which will take him to the heart of the revolution and "General Elias" himself. --The Halitosis Kid 12:48, 16 December 2006 (CET)


This groundbreaking political western was probably the first of the so called Zapata westerns, and Quien sabe?'s surprise success set the basis for lots to follow. With director Damiano Damiani, writer Franco Solinas and the lead played by Gian Maria Volonte, 3 key figures of the Italian political cinema of the 60s and 70s were involved, so no wonder that this was also one of the most serious examples of this type of SW. Set in the revolution years between 1914 and 1920, the film was aiming in fact at the illegal CIA underground activities in contemporary South America. In Damiani's view this film is not a western, but there are still enough western elements in it to be included as a vital part of the genre.

by Stanton

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