A Man Called Sledge

1970

Action / Western

1
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 52%
IMDb Rating 5.9 10 883

Synopsis


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Director

Cast

James Garner as Luther Sledge
Dennis Weaver as Erwin Ward
Claude Akins as Hooker
John Marley as Old Man
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
647.63 MB
1280*534
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 33 min
P/S 4 / 2
1.37 GB
1920*800
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 33 min
P/S 2 / 3

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by ma-cortes 7 / 10

Good and violent US / Macaroni Western shot in spectacular scenarios from Almeria , Spain , as usual .,

In the Old West, a gunfighting outlaw called Sledge(James Garner) connives his way into a prison in hopes of getting his hands a cache of gold on stored there . Sledge join forces with a varied bunch of bandits (John Marley , Dennis Weaver , Claude Akins , Bruno Corazzari , among others) attempting to take a large shipment of gold into a prison fort . The misfit group of outlaws wind up battling each over a cache of gold . A quintet of unlikely partners match wills and wits and fight enemies and each other .

Entertaining Spaghetti Western with shootouts , action ,violence and amusement . It is a mainstream Western amusement with a lot of surprises , thrills and including a love story between James Garner and a whore played by gorgeous Laura Antonelli . This film realized in Spaghetti style contains action-Western , gun-play , fist-play and is pretty bemusing . Vic Morrow's spaghetti western, probably won't be making too many top ten lists, but its an agreeable flick . It's an exciting western that scrutinizes the greed and paranoia that afflicts a misfit group , including breathtaking showdown between protagonists and the enemies . The film blends violence , thrills , high body-count and it's fast moving and exciting . There is plenty of action in the movie , guaranteeing shootouts or stunts every few minutes , including a spectacular final confrontation . Although by many to be director Vic Morrow's finest film , this is a tale of fear , greed and murder , as some partners fall out over the gold they have robbed from an impenetrable safe . It also has probably the most brutal prison escape ever put on film . Underrrated by some reviewers , but till interesting to watch . It above all things mostly also remains a real characters movie, in which the five main roles are the essentials . Their dynamic together is also great and is what mostly keeps this movie going. They are five totally different characters, which is the foremost reason why they work out so great together on film . This theme about confrontation among mean people for a cache of gold has been treated in various Spaghetti such as ¨Ruthless four¨ by Giorgo Capitani with Van Heflin , Gilbert Roland , George Hilton , and ¨A reason to live , a reason to die¨ by Tonino Valeri with James Coburn , Jose Suarez and Bud Spencer . Here James Garner is superbly believable and gives a nice portrait of an increasingly unhinged thief . James Garner enthusiasts might be surprised to see the star play a villain . Furthermore , John Marley is very good as a cunning old man and remaining support cast is pretty well . There appears Spaghetti's ordinary actors such as Ken Clark , Wayde Preston , Steffen Zacharias , Fausto Tozzi , Bruno Corazzari , Angelo Infanti , Luciano Rossi , Barta Barry , among others.

The musician Gianni Ferrio composes a vibrant soundtrack and well conducted ; including a catching leitmotif and considered to be one of the best . In addition , a marvelous song at the beginning titled ¨Other men's gold¨ , with lyrics by Bill Martin and Phil Coulter , sung by Stefan Grossman . Atmospheric scenario with barren outdoors , dirty landscapes under sunny exteriors and a shimmer sun and fine sets by production designer Mario Chiari with striking cinematography by Luigi Kuiveiller . The picture resulted to be shot entirely on location in Almeria , Spain , where in the 60s and 70s had been shot innumerable Ravioli/Paella Westerns , and interiors in Dino De Laurentiis Cinematographica S.A. , Rome . The motion picture was well written by Frank Kowalski ad Vic Morrow who also directed . While Morrow was filming ¨Twilight zone : the movie¨ , he was unfortunately killed on the early morning hours of July 23, 1982 in a tragic, freak accident on the set while filming a scene involving a helicopter which crashed right on top of him and two young children . Rating : 6'5 , acceptable Spaghetti with good lead from James Garner .

Reviewed by Spikeopath 8 / 10

Luther Sledge.

A Man Called Sledge is directed by Vic Morrow and Morrow co-writes the screenplay with Frank Kowalski. It stars James Garner, Dennis Weaver, Claude Akins, John Marley, Laura Antonelli, Wayde Preston and Ken Clarke. Music is by Gianni Ferrio and cinematography by Luigi Kuveiller.

Luther Sledge (Garner) is a wanted outlaw who upon hearing about a huge gold shipment stored in a prison, promptly assembles his gang and sets about executing a daring robbery.

A Pasta Western filmed in Technicolor/Techniscope out of Andalucia in Spain, A Man Called Sledge is a most interesting and entertaining addition to this splinter of Westerns. From the off we are in no doubt that Garner is serving up a character not of his normal portrayal varieties, here he's not heroic, all American or a lovable rogue, he's a bad egg, gruff, rough and tough, and driven by law breaking activities. Added into the mix is a rather cheeky premise, that of gold being stored in a working prison, which is naturally heavily fortified, protected and seemingly impossible to breach, but Sledge and his cohorts have other ideas that gives the narrative and dramatic drive much strength.

You couldn't take it with a pope!

In spite of the odd flecks of humour, such as a terrific organ sequence and Akins' constant cynical asides (both orally and visually), pic is grim in texture, there will be blood and the unfurling of other hateful human traits. Morrow knows his Pasta Oaters, both as regards visual ticks and via characterisations. So we get camera zooms, low level up-tilts and spins, while the characters range from the foolish to the greedy - to the twitchy and the dumb - and even a howling man! The story plays out through differing back drops, be it a snow storm, an arid landscape or a sweaty bar - not least the imposing prison at the centre of the plot - Morrow is taking his story through visual variations.

I would have died for you Sledge!

There are a number of great scenes to enjoy, usually where action is concerned, not least the quite exhilarating show-piece involving a jailbreak, where here we are treated to top stunt work as dynamite and a Gatling Gun join the usual bullets and blood carnage. Cards are a big feature, as are crosses - cum - crucifixes, the latter providing some striking (and scary) imagery. While all the time Ferrio's varied musical score hits all the right Pasta Western notes. Hell! even the irritating theme song is hauntingly chaotic and thus fitting once the pic reaches its denouement. With the mostly American cast turning in good perfs, and Morrow proving deft at genre compliance, this is very much an under valued pic and worthy of either seeking out for a first time view or for reevaluation purpose. 7.5/10

Reviewed by Wuchak 6 / 10

James Garner leads an outlaw gang with gold fever

Released in 1970 and directed by Vic Morrow (and Giorgio Gentili), "A Man Called Sledge" stars James Garner as the leader of an outlaw gang, who experience gold fever after hearing about a cache of gold temporarily stored at a desert prison. They hatch a harebrained heist, but things go awry due to their greedy obsessions. Dennis Weaver and Claude Akins play members of the gang while John Marley appears as an old man who joins them. Laura Antonelli is on hand as the striking babe while Wayde Preston appears as the sheriff.

Aside from his TV work with shows like Maverick and Cheyenne, Garner only appeared in nine Westerns with just four being serious Westerns (rather than comedy-tinged Westerns). "A Man Called Sledge" was the last of those four and his character, Luther Sledge, is a far cry from likable gambler Bret Maverick or heroic Jess Remsberg in "Duel at Diablo" (1966) or the determined Wyatt Earp in "Hour of the Gun" (1967). Even as an outlaw, though, Garner still has his genial charm, but when innocents start dying due to his lucre-hungry schemes he pretty much loses all sympathy. And his band of owlhoots get zero sympathy from the get-go.

While often referred to as a Spaghetti Western, "Sledge" is actually a Dino De Laurentiis production with an American director/writer (Morrow) and main cast, but shot in Spain with Italians and other Europeans in peripheral positions (cast & production); for instance, the Spaghetti-flavored music by Gianni Ferrio.

The movie comes across as a mish-mash of Sergio Leone Westerns, "The War Wagon" (1967), "Mackenna's Gold" (1969), "The Wild Bunch" (1969) and "There was a Crooked Man" (1970). But with a few imaginative elements, such as the wintery opening, which is rare for a Western, and the funeral component at the Mexican village in the final act, not to mention the quirky late 60s-ish theme song repeated throughout. Also the opening gunfight in the saloon is thrilling and I like how the film closes with a pretty moving moral. It's even haunting. Unfortunately, the movie features some clumsy editing in the third act starting with the card game and the immediate aftermath.

The film runs 93 minutes and was shot in Almeria, Andalucia, Spain, and Rome (interiors). WRITERS: Morrow, Frank Kowalski & Massimo D'Avak.

GRADE: B-

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