El Condor (film)

El Condor is a 1970 American western film directed by John Guillermin.

El Condor
Directed byJohn Guillermin
Produced byAndré De Toth
Screenplay byLarry Cohen
Steven Carabatsos
Story bySteven Carabatsos
StarringJim Brown
Lee Van Cleef
Patrick O'Neal
Marianna Hill
Iron Eyes Cody
Music byMaurice Jarre
CinematographyHenri Persin
Edited byWalter Hannemann
William H. Ziegler
Distributed byNational General Pictures
Release date
  • September 23, 1970 (1970-09-23)
Running time
102 minutes
CountryUnited States

Jim Brown and Lee Van Cleef lead a band of Apaches (including Iron Eyes Cody) against a fortress commanded by Patrick O'Neal. The fortress is said to contain the gold reserves of Emperor Maximilian.

The movie was shot in 35mm Technicolor in Almería, Spain, and involved the construction of the huge adobe fortress set that was re-used in later films, including Conan the Barbarian (1982) and March or Die (1977)'.

El Condor was among the first movies rated R (for violence, explicit language, and nudity).


In 1860s Mexico, Luke, an escaped convict, and Jaroo, a loner gold prospector who is not very bright, team up with a band of Apache Indians to capture a heavily armed fortress for the thousands of gold bars said to be stored within. The fortress is commanded by the sadistic Chavez, whose mistress, Claudine, Luke becomes attracted to the moment he sees her.


VHS and DVD releases

The movie was released on a fullscreen VHS in 1994, and a widescreen DVD by Warner Archive in 2009.

Critical reaction

Roger Ebert's review of August 27, 1970 in the Chicago Sun-Times began: "Lee Van Cleef's last words in 'El Condor' are, 'What am I doing here?' Amen, brother."

See also



    • The American Film Institute Catalog of Motion Pictures Produced in the United States – Feature Films, 1961–1970. University of California Press, 1997, page 298.
    • Greenspun, Roger “Screen: `El Condor’ Bows, Mexican Treasure Tale Comes to the Forum”, New York Times, June 20, 1970, page 22.
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