June 20th, 2013: El Chuncho, Quien Sabe? aka A Bullet for the General

A Bullet for the General

Cast and Crew:  Ennio Morricone (Score); Aldo Sambrell

What It’s About: El Chuncho (Gian Maria Volonté) is a Mexican bandit/revolutionary who kills government soldiers to sell their guns to  Elias (Jamie Fernandez) the general of the title. His gang includes Adelita (Marine Beswick) and El Santo (Klaus Kinski), a priest turned revolutionary.  While robbing a train, an American (Lou Castel) helps them and joins the gang. The gringo becomes known as “Nino”, but does he have a motive besides the cause and the money?

Why Watch it Today?:  Pancho Villa, the revolutionary that inspired this (and many other Spaghetti Westerns set during the Mexican Revolution) was assassinated on this date in 1923 A Bullet for the General is one of (if not the) best Mexican Revolution era Spaghetti Westerns with Volonte and Castel giving excellent performances as two very different men with very different aims (not to mention Kinski stealing the show as a mad priest), unpredictable plot twists and a fantastically fatalistic and cynical ending (if, like me, you like such things).  A must see for Western fans looking for something different.

Other Choices:  The Wild Bunch, The Professionals

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