Django

The movie that spawned a genre.
Django
Django is a 1966 Italian spaghetti Western film directed by Sergio Corbucci and starring Franco Nero in the eponymous role. The film earned a reputation as being one of the most violent films ever made up to that point and was subsequently refused a certificate in Britain until 1993, when it was eventually issued an 18 certificate. Subsequent to this the film was downgraded to a 15 certificate in 2004. Although the name is referenced in over thirty "sequels" from the time of the film's release until the mid 1980s in an effort to capitalize on the success of the original, none of these films were official, featuring neither Corbucci nor Nero. Nero did reprise his role as Django in 1987's Django 2: Il Grande Ritorno (Django Strikes Again), in the only official sequel to be written by Corbucci.

Reviews

John Chard
Django, you drag your coffin around, coffin around, coffin around. Django is directed by Sergio Corbucci and it stars Franco Nero, José Bódalo, Loredana Nusciak, Ángel Álvarez and Eduardo Fajardo. Django (Nero), dragging a coffin behind him, saves a woman from some bandits and soon finds himself in the middle of war between two factions - which he may be able to use to his advantage. 1966 was a stellar year for Spaghetti Westerns, Leone was putting the crown on his "Dollars" trilogy, Damiani produced a political firecracker and Sollima crafted one of the finest "manhunt" Oaters of this sub-genre. Then there is this, Django, a Pasta Western that is synonymous with the form. I fought for the North! Django is a treat, it's violent and cruel, funny and cheeky, and pleasing on the eyes and ears - so pretty much it contains all the best things that made the original wave of Spaghetti's so palatable. Undeniably it owes a "lot" to A Fistful of Dollars and Yojimbo, but it's still its own beast, a baroque Gothic piece of work that positively revels in nihilism. The graphic violence is wonderfully cartoonish, the iconography unbound, and in Nero - eyes likes chips of ice - the pic has one of the coolest and baddest men on the planet. Nusciak brings the sex and sizzle, coming off like a Spag Raquel Welch, whilst the villains are delightfully vile and scuzzy. The setting is superb, a muddy cold hell of a town with a brothel as the fulcrum of the piece. Naturally there's a cemetery, which will play host to some of that iconography mentioned earlier. Religion gets short shrift, racial prejudice given a caustic once over, while it's worth mentioning there's more than a hint of social realism pulsing away as Corbucci brings the blood and thunder. OK! It's light in plotting, and it's not even Corbucci's best film, but the stylised violence, the visuals and a cracking soundtrack easily take you away from the fodder of the story. It would spawn a multitude of rip-offs, name checks and influence a whole host of film makers, but this is the real deal. A Spag Western worth revisiting to see just when it was a sub-genre of quality, this before hundreds of poor band wagon jumpers began to soil the Spaghetti Western name. 8.5/10

Leave a Review?

You must be registered and logged in to submit your review.