Deptford Cinema is hosting a Spaghetti Western season, with The Good the Bad and the Ugly showing on Tuesday, July 31.
In the late 1960s, almost half of the films produced in Italy were westerns.
Despite a western setting, these movies were never shot in America, and often featured dubbed European or English-speaking stars, and showcased a greater sense of stylish operatic violence, edgy political commentary and a twisted sense of humour than their American cousins.
The cycle of spaghetti westerns lasted just a few years, but before hanging up its spurs in the 1970s, it completely rewrote the genre, and introduced back to Americans a new way of experiencing a class of film that they had previously thought they owned.
Sergio Leone’s 1964 A Fistful of Dollars defined the spaghetti style: from the vast desert vistas (filmed in Spain) to the moody micro close-ups, the dance-of-death shootouts and the majestic and exotic Ennio Morricone score.
It made star Clint Eastwood, pictured, such an iconic gun-slinging figure that he now arguably defines the image of the western over John Wayne.
This summer at Deptford Cinema, ride back to the Italian West.
The Good the Bad and the Ugly, Sergio Leone’s third ‘Dollar’ western, appropriately showcased even greater style and ambition than before, with Ennio Morricone delivering another memorable score.
Set against the background of the American Civil War, it completes the Leone/Clint Eastwood trilogy in epic fashion.