FILM: Duck, You Sucker!-A Fistful of Dyamite

3/1/11

A lesser known Sergio Leone epic (Director of 'The Good, The Bad and The Ugly’).

Sergio Leone, the same bad ass director of the Western classic movie, "The Good, The Bad, The Ugly,"is gonna eat Quentin Tarrantino for breakfast. And guess what? Quentin wouldn't even mind at all...seeing how he heavily borrows often from Sergio (ex. Kill Bill: Vol. 2), (Quentin I'm guessing somewhere has probably even acknowledged it).

Other Western classics from Sergio Leone include the amazing and epic "A Fistful of Dollars," and "For A Few More Dollars." (part of a trio with "The Good, The Bad and The Ugly" all starring the "man with no name,' Clint Eastwood). And then, "Once Upon A Time in the America" is another classic (non-western) from Leone, which is a sort of follow up to his Western epic "Once Upon A Time in West."

Though quite underrated, "Duck, You Sucker!' aka "A Fistful of Dynamite" is once again an added classic film making from Sergio. This Spaghetti western film is boasting with some of the most peculiar scenes, blackest wittiness, and darkest betrayals and stories of friendships and camaraderie, too. Along with great performances from Rod Steiger and James Coburn, and not to mention the incredibly rich musical score from Ennio Morricone, it just doesn't get any better. (well it does, "The Good, The Bad and The Ugly' is for sure better...but you'll need this film under your belt to complete your Sergio Leone education).

However, keep in mind here the pacing. If you're used to "The Expendables" meets "Fast & The Furious" MTV type of pacing, you're going to get bored fast. This movie is an 8-course meal, and not a fast food drive thru. But at the end of the movie, you'll realize that Leone has done it again.

And make no doubt, Leone is the master. More than being a master, he is "style' personified. Please check the aforementioned Sergio Leone films if you haven't already.

As a quick side note the film was originally supposed to be called "A Fistful of Dynamite" as a continuation of the "Fistful..." series. However, Sergio Leone somehow got to thinking that "Duck, You Sucker" was a happening, new and cool slang in America and he stubbornly stuck with it.

But the good news is you can watch this movie with your friends and you will surely be using your new catch phrase, "Duck, You Sucker!" It worked for James Coburn.

Bring on the dynamite and nitroglycerin...and oh yeah, "Duck, you Sucker!"

Synopsis

Originally titled, Giù la Testa, "Duck, You Sucker!" is set in 1913 Mexico during the revolution. Juan Miranda (Rod Steiger) is a sweaty Mexican thug who bumps into John Mallory (James Coburn), an Irish Republican Army explosives virtuoso.

Despite an intense first meeting with John, and seeing his expertise with explosives, Juan convinces him to join his fellow bandits to blow up and rob the Mesa Verde bank. However, the entire heist is just a trick, and John is secretly using Juan to accomplish the revolution's goals.

It's the start of Juan's unintentional participation in a revolutionary riot, along with his turbulent friendship with John, who I like to call "The Prince of Nitroglycerin." Despite his greedy ambitions, Juan surprisingly turns out to be an instant folk hero when a bank wall explodes and frees a number of political prisoners.

In the end, the reluctant partners make a fine pair—and become instant heroes in the 1913 Mexican revolution.

Blowing up the bridge at San Jorge.