group of bandits try to steal the horses from the MacGregor's farm,
expecting little resistance from the two old couples living there, but
this Scottish clan is determined to fight back with guns and even a
canon until they are relieved by their returning sons who finish off
the rustlers. The sons are later tasked with taking the horses and
cattle to be sold, but arriving in town they discover that it has come
under the control of the ruthless Crawford who offers them a paltry
$1000 for the horses, refusing the deal they start a fight and soon end
up in gaol; fortunately they manage to break out but find their horses
stolen. It soon emerges that their old enemy Santillana is behind this
ruthless rule, and Gregor, the oldest brother, decides to join up with
his gang to find their stolen horses, and bring down this head bandit
once and for all...
the beginning it is clear that this is a much lighter hearted film than
many of its contemporaries, from the elderly MacGregor family fighting
back against the bandits with all manner of weapons including a canon,
to the huge bar-room brawl with the pianist accompanying the action
throughout. The clan themselves are pure hero types, certainly no
Ringo/Django anti-heros, and as a whole the film plays out more
like a Classic American Western than the often grim and gritty nature
associated with the Spaghetti Westerns at the time, although some of
the treatment that Santillana dishes out (setting a man on fire and threatening to have all his men rape a women)
make the film a little too much for family viewing. Although
entertaining the film sadly fails to gel for a lot of the run-time
- much of the humour feels rather forced, the pacing is often rather
too slow and the plot relies on far too much good luck - fortunately it
picks up towards the end with an effective conclusion.
Franco Giraldi was on just his second film here, but working with the
experienced peplum shooter Alejandro Ulloa he does a very good job on
this film with the action scenes all very well shot - obviously
benifiting from a decent budget. The soundtrack was written by the
genre icon Ennio Morricone and contains some good Scottish pipe music,
although it is missing in a few of the action scenes that could have
used a little lifting.
American actor Robert Woods, who appeared in a few lesser Euro-Westerns
is top billed as Gregor MacGregor and gives a decent if unremarkable
performance. Euro-cult fans should instantly recognise Fernando Sancho
as a Mexican bandit, while the babyfaced Alberto Dell'Acqua plays the youngest son, Dick MacGregor in a very similar performance to that in Texas, Addio (1966).
While coming nowhere near to the genre's best, Sette pistole per i MacGregor
is certainly not among it's worst and remains a solidly produced and
decently written little film, that despite a few violent moments, makes
for some lighthearted and unchallenging, yet not "brainless" afternoon viewing. Partly recommended to genre fans, for anyone coming new to the genre, there are many better films to see first.
Anyone famous in it?
A variety of familiar genre stars but no big names.
Original Aspect Ratio - 2.35:1 anamorphic wide-screen. Colour. The
image is good - light grain and speckling but very good colours
and definition, a couple of very brief scenes seem to be from a lower
quality source and are a little soft.
English and Italian mono tracks. For
about 3 minutes towards the start of the film the English audio track
goes badly out of sync, and a couple of sound effects plus one line of
dialogue seem to be missing, but it is otherwise fine and decently
The disc includes:
Interview with the director about this film and the genre in general. In Italian only with no subs. 15 minutes.
Still photo and poster gallery, presented as a video file with soundtrack backing.
Original Italian trailer (which bizarrely includes footage from Fistful of Dollars (1964)).
The disc box includes an insert containing a complete cast listing for the film and a little trivia (in Italian).