Django Shoots First


Django Shoots First (Italian: Django spara per primo) is an Italian Spaghetti Western film directed by Alberto De Martino.[3][4]

Django Shoots First
Directed byAlberto De Martino
Produced byAmati Edmondo[1]
Screenplay by
Story by
  • Tito Carpi
  • Alessandro Continenza
  • Massimiliano Capriccioli
  • Vincenzo Flamini
  • Giovanni Simonelli[1]
Starring
Music byBruno Nicolai[1]
CinematographyRiccardo Pallottini[1]
Edited byOtello Colangeli[1]
Production
company
Fida Cinematografica[1]
Distributed byFida Cinematografica[1]
Release date
  • 1966 (1966)
CountryItaly[2]

Plot

Ringo, a bounty hunter, has killed the father of Glenn Garvin (Glenn Saxson) to collect a bounty. Glenn kills Ringo and then takes his father's body to town to collect the bounty himself. There he befriends Gordon (Fernando Sancho in city clothes and a bowler hat instead of his usual Mexican bandit outfit), who tells Glenn that he stands to inherit half of everything in town, which his father had owned in partnership with Ken Cluster.

Cluster's henchman Ward and his men try and fail to kill Glenn, so Cluster robs his own bank and frames Glenn for murder. Glenn escapes and is taken in by Cluster's wife, Jessica, who wants Glenn to kill her husband. However, it turns out that Jessica is also married to a stranger, Doc (Alberto Lupo), who had helped Glenn earlier. Jessica escapes to Ward, whom she convinces that Cluster wants him to stash the bank robbery loot in Mexico, in her name. Glenn, Doc, and Gordon ambush the convoy and kill Ward, while Jessica is arrested for the robbery, on the testimony of Cluster.

Cluster and Glenn sign an agreement and there is a celebration. Doc leaves and liberates Jessica. She takes his gun and leaves with the money, despite Doc's warning that Cluster will kill her outside. The gun turns out to be unloaded, and Cluster fatally stabs her.

Gordon and Glenn start a saloon brawl and sneak out unnoticed. At the cemetery, Glenn and Doc find Cluster. Glenn – who earlier, even before the partnership, learned that his father was framed and that Ringo was tracking him at Cluster's request – is offered part of the loot but chooses to avenge his father instead. He shoots Cluster's gun out of his hand and kills him when he draws a knife. He buries the corpse in the grave of Glenn's father. Glenn makes apologies to his father and posts a reward for Cluster, just as the latter had done for his father.

Doc, Gordon, and Glenn leave, but the latter two decide to return when they discover that the gold in the saddlebag has been replaced with a note from the saloon girl Lucy, who Glenn had been reluctant to leave behind anyway.

In the final scene we see Glenn, Gordon, and Lucy running the bank when Cluster's son appears to claim his half of the gold.

Cast

Release

Django Shoots First was released in 1966.[5][2]

Reception

In his investigation of narrative structures in Spaghetti Western films, Bert Fridlund argues that Django Shoots First presents a complicated rendition of the partnership plot that was used in many Spaghetti Westerns following the success of For a Few Dollars More, where one of the bounty killer partners turns out to have a secret vengeance motive. Glenn is the protagonist who has a double motive. During the major part of the narrative, his inheritance is his primary concern, but eventually he manages to get his vengeance as well. Doc is the partner with a hidden motive – not concerning the malefactor Cluster, but getting back or punishing his bigamist wife. Their opposition, the Clusters, betray each other for money. Finally, Lucy betrays Glenn, stealing his money to secure his love.[6]

"Glenn Saxon [sic], in his performance as Glenn recalls the ironic touch and blond gusto of vindicative hero archetype Giuliano Gemma. Most of the many lead actors rather emulating the Clint Eastwood style and demeanor would have had a hard time carrying the scene where Glenn, after a stunt in bed with Jessica, appears in a female dressing gown and gun belt!"[6]

References

  1. "Django spara per primo (1966)". Archiviodelcinemaitaliano.it (in Italian). Retrieved 8 November 2018.
  2. Grant 2011, p. 440.
  3. Roberto Chiti; Roberto Poppi; Enrico Lancia; Mario Pecorari. Dizionario del cinema italiano. I film. Gremese Editore, 1992. ISBN 8876055932.
  4. Marco Giusti (2007). Dizionario del western all'italiana. Mondadori. ISBN 8804572779.
  5. Hughes, Howard (2018). "Westerns, Italian Style: Once Upon a Timeline". The Complete Sartana (Booklet). Arrow Video. p. 37. FCD1762 / AV151.
  6. Fridlund, Bert (2006). The Spaghetti Western. A Thematic Analysis. Jefferson, NC and London: McFarland & Company Inc. p. 144. ISBN 9780786425075.

Sources

  • Grant, Kevin (2011). Any Gun Can Play. Fab Press. ISBN 9781903254615.
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