a.k.a. - È tornato Sabata... hai chiuso un'altra volta Lee Van Cleef stars in this well directed but flat Spaghetti Western. USA R1 Sony/MGM DVD; from the Sabata Trilogy boxset.
An enigmatic start, somewhere between Mario Bava and The Man With the Golden Gun (1974),
sees Sabata (Lee Van Cleef) seemingly relegated to the role of circus
performer. He meets up with an old friend from the war (Reiner
Schöne) and a wide mix of eccentric townsfolk, however, he soon
falls foul of the town's Mayor (Giampiero Albertini)
who has levvied a high sales tax on everything in the town. Mayor
McIntock tries to buy off Sabata, but fails, and soon the anti-hero is
digging deep into a consipiracy involving fake money and lots of gold,
while the double-crossing Clyde has to choose which side to support.
After Yul Brynner's unexciting starring role in Adios, Sabata
(1971), producer Alberto Grimaldi saw that Lee Van Cleef returned for
this sequel, along with composer Marcello Giombini; while director Gianfranco Parolini returns again. The end-result is much closer to the original, but not as fun as either of the earlier films.
overall plot is quite simple, corrupt town leaders trying to scam
the townsfolk out of loads of money before heading on their way -
Sabata and his partners have to work out just what is going on and save
the day. The plot moves along at a slow pace for an action film, with a
notable lack of shootouts, but it builds up to a decent climax. However
the plot is let down by plenty of holes - Sabata's escape from an
exploding mine ambush is never actually explained, and a random duel
with see-saw flip guns has no link to the storyline at all - while
Sabata's tricks in the original film can all be explained, the jumps in
logic here are often annoying. Generally the plot doesn't gel; and
while the previous Sabata films lacked great scripts, this entry is
notably worse, and could certainly have used a trim down to 90 minutes.
the film looks and sounds great. Director Gianfranco Parolini,
who directed the previous two entries uses a wonderful
mixture of tracking shots, handheld shots, fast cuts, zooms and even
angled shoots to convey an action packed feel. The film is almost
entirely set in the town, but the sets look good, and there is plenty
going on in the background. The
stunt-work is very over-the-top and impressive to see. Composer Marcello Giombini returns from the first film, and his
soundtrack is a bizarre mix
of church organ, vocal requiem, Old-Western and contempory jazz that
fits the film well. The church
music and night-time sets, especially the candle lit interiors of the
some of the houses give the film a neo-gothic vibe at time, but
not as accomplished as the original.
Van Cleef is the biggest name on the cast, gives a good
performance as the black-clad anti-hero, remaining calm and unphased
throughout, with plenty of knowing glances. Gianni Rizzo and
Ignazio Spalla return for the third times in the series while Bruno
Ukmar returns from the original film, with some more over-the-top
Albertini doesn't quite work as McIntock, he simply doesn't look as
evil as the comic-book villains Sabata had faced in the previous
fantastic direction and a distinctive soundtrack, along with a good
cast and production, cannot hide the rather dull script, and big drop
in action from the previous two entries. Not a terrible film, but the
first two Sabata films are much better, and for action packed Westerns,
there are many superior entries.
Anyone famous in it?
Lee Van Cleef - Western star, made famous in Sergio Leone's For a Few Dollars More (1965) Giampiero Albertini - police detective in Case of the Bloody Iris (1972)
Directed by anyone interesting?
Gianfranco Parolini - Director of the other Sabata Trilogy films, and WW2 film Five into Hell (1969)
A little blood, average Western-style violence.
Who is it for?
Action film and Spaghetti Western might should enjoy this, but watch the other Sabata films first.
A very strange mix of music gives the film a good backing.
Original Aspect Ratio - 2.35:1. Anamorphically Enhanced. Colour The picture quality is fantastic with only a minimal layer of grain and occasion print damage.
English mono - Dolby Digital - sounds great. French dub track is also included.
English and French.
Main Feature: 1hr 45m 47s
The disc features:
Trailers: MGM Westerns reel plus cinema trailers for: Glory, Major Dundee and The Professionals and DVD trailers for Silverado and Good the Bad and the Ugly (12m 06s)
This disc is only available as part of the Sabata Trilogy collection. Single disc release due from MGM/Fox on 22nd May (details unconfirmed at present).
Region 1 - NTSC
Japanese, Italian and English R2 discs, none are much better, Japanese disc has original trailer.
Believed to be fully uncut. Print used is English language.
An unimpressive storyline and a lack of action wastes good direction and soundtrack. Not recommended.
A great looking and sounding release, although sadly lacking even an original trailer.