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Wednesday, September 9, 2009

My name is Nobody (1973) - a comic Western

Spaghetti westerns were all the craze starting with the 'Man with No Name' series, starring Clint Eastwood, and directed by Sergei Leone. More directors and stars got into the act, and soon, there were a number of such movies in the market. However by, the early 1970's, the whole concept of spaghetti westerns were becoming a joke, and there were a number of movies made on the concept of creating a comedy western. There had been other comedy westerns made, such as the Trinity series (They Call Me Trinity and, Trinity Is STILL My Name!). Both of the Trinity movies also starred Terence Hill (making him the star of comedy westerns, while Henry Fonda was the star of serious westerns). The movie was mostly directed by Tonino Valerii, with Sergei Leone directing a few scenes, but since there was the involvement of Sergei, the movie came to be known as a Sergei Leone movie (something that Torino was not happy about). The music by Ennio Morricone was superb as usual.

However, 'My Name Is Nobody' is the story of a famous (and old) gunslinger Jack Beauregard (Henry Fonda); since he is famous, he is constantly hunted by the younger punks who want to challenge him, and if they win, they will be the next famous ones. Jack, after a lifetime of fighting, now just wants to hang up his boots, and is in Europe, hoping for some peace and quiet.
The movie starts out with 3 men challenging Jack, and they are dispatched in a barber's shop; and there the name of the movie is born, since, when asked who can defeat Jack, the barber replies "Faster than him? Nobody!"
And Nobody is Terence Hill, who is a big fan of Jack, and wants to setup him against a finale sequence against the Wild Bunch, a bunch of bandits. Nobody keeps after Jack, finally managing to get him into the fight against the Wild Bunch. Job and fight done, Nobody thanks Jack by setting up a fake fight with Jack, which is apparently won by Nobody, letting Jack off in retirement on a boat to Europe.

My name is Nobody (1973) (partial direction by Sergei Leone and starring Henry Fonda, Terrence Hill, and Jean Martin)

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