A Fistful Of Dollars (Italy 1964)

Rating: ***
Review Date: 1/7/14
Director: Sergio Leone
Music: Ennio Moricone
Cast: Clint Eastwood, Gian Maria Volonté

The film that propelled Clint Eastwood into super stardom as "the man with no name." Essentially a retelling of Akira Kurosawa's "Yojimbo", a shrewd gunslinging stranger (Clint Eastwood) rides into a small town and pits two rival families against each other for his own profit. Raw, dirty, gritty, lawless, and unapologetically violent, this film played an important role in the paradigm shift from "good guy" westerns to "anti-hero" westerns. Eastwood's performance is impeccable and Gian Maria Volonté is a smart and ruthless antagonist. It's definitely a low budget picture, but Sergio Leone makes the best of what he has to work with and takes advantage of a variety of gorgeous locations. Good stuff.