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Companeros (1972)

Franco Nero , Tomas Milian , Sergio Corbucci  |  R |  DVD
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Franco Nero, Tomas Milian, Jack Palance, Fernando Rey, Iris Berben
  • Directors: Sergio Corbucci
  • Writers: Sergio Corbucci, Arduino Maiuri, Fritz Ebert, José Frade, Massimo De Rita
  • Producers: Antonio Morelli
  • Format: Anamorphic, Color, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), Italian (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Starz / Anchor Bay
  • DVD Release Date: July 24, 2001
  • Run Time: 118 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000059PPQ
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #503,692 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Companeros" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Interviews with stars Franco Nero, Tomas Milian and music composer Ennio Morricone

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Companeros September 21, 2004
COMPANEROS succeeds because of its excesses. Everyone but a handful of peasant students led by an ineffectual pacifist professor (Fernando Rey) is greedy and corrupt. The nominal bad guys don't simply kill the nominal good guys. Rather, in a manner that would do a James Bond film proud, they devise elaborate tortures that, as a rule, provide more opportunities for ingenious escapes than lingering deaths. If you're not convinced yet, one of the bad guys has an old-fashioned telephone mouthpiece grafted over his right ear.

Franco Nero stars as a Swedish (!?) gun trader in turn of the century, revolution torn Mexico. Tomas Milian co-stars as an accidental revolutionary and the two are thrown together when an impenetrable safe, presumably filled with great riches, is discovered. Nero and Milian travel to Fort Yuma to kidnap the imprisoned Professor Xanthos (Rey), the students' hero and possessor of the combination that will open the safe. Along the way, besides developing into a buddy film with the grungy Milian and the fastidious Nero, our heroes must conquer various groups of federales, a fort full of American soldiers and, most dangerous of all, Jack Palance's group of freelancing mercenaries.

Palance's character is one of the strangest... he's a pot-smoking wooden handed goon whose only friend is his pet falcon Marcia, who gnawed off his right hand to free him from a crucifixion death. If you find that more disturbing than absurdly humorous, COMPANEROS isn't for you, because that's pretty much of a piece with the spirit of this movie.

COMPANEROS is fast moving and quite violent, but I found its exuberant, excessive and exaggerated violence as much fun as an old Warner Brothers cartoon or a James Bond movie.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic example of Italian Western May 29, 2001
Wonderfully extravagant political western with a lovely Morricone score. The characters, as one might expect, are overdone and hammed up, but this is one of the pleasures of Italian westerns of the time. Like Leone, Corbucci's view of the west is highly stylized, violent and compulsively entertaining. Depending on your preferences this could well be a crude film with bad acting but if you are tuned to the right frequency the film delivers: it is a classic of this particular sub-genre, made with passion and high voltage energy, and in my opinion it also is Corbucci's finest entry along Il Grande Silenzio. It's not up to Leone's standards, but then again, what could be? Worth the admission, but you do need to enjoy this brand of extravagance.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Swedish Bullets and Cuban Berets September 25, 2002
Although "The Great Silence" may well be Corbucci's best spaghetti western, "Companeros" is surely his most enjoyable-- and probably the closest he ever comes to vivid characterization in his films. Franco Nero's Yodlaf Peterson (aka "The Swede") is an amusing riff on the Gringo figure with "much money but not much heart" (to borrow a line from "A Bullet for the General"). And Nero clearly enjoys playing off Tomas Milian's sometimes buffoonish yet always committed "El Vasco" (meaning "beret," which Milian wears throughout the entire film, Che Guevera style, only taking it off during his marriage ceremony to Iris Berben)--the two generate a chemistry that seldom occurs in spaghetti westerns, especially the highly political ones. ("A Bullet for the General" explores the growing alienation between the Gringo and the revolutionary, for instance; "Faccia a Faccia" documents the growing horror of the bandit for the Western intellectual; and "The Big Gundown" shows grudging respect between the American sheriff and the Mexican outlaw against the forces of capital--but no real friendship.) Significantly, the film ends with the true *beginning* of friendship-- "Companeros" turns from an ironic statement by "Il Penguino" (the Swede) to one of political commitment and personal investment. Against the amoral greed of prior Gringo characters (starting with Eastwood's "Man with No Name"), Yodlaf learns by the end of the film that there is something more important than the self. By naming himself a "companeros," he effectually rejects the greed and apoliticism typical to the role. Read more ›
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Corbucci's best August 31, 2001
In my opinion this is Corbucci's best western (though some of you out there will think it was The Great Silence). It features an amazing musical score by Ennio Morricone who went beyond the usual stuff he did for the other great Sergio (Leone, the master). Franco Nero, who always wanted to shoot these films in english, but was handicapped by his heavy accent, plays a foreigner, in this case a Swede as opposed to the Polish he played on Corbucci's The Mercenary (aka A Professional Gun in the states). It also features another great actor with Tomas Milian who always went beyond his acting duties by playing the most extreme and colorful characters, in this case palying a mexican bandit that seems to have been inspired on Che Guevara (!). Let's not forget Jack Palance as the pot-smoking baddie, cruel enough to give anyone the creeps. Centered on the mexican revolution, this film is full of surprises and, akin to most spaghetti westerns of the time, twists of all sorts. Though Corbucci can't overcome the fact of adding some sort of humorous gag every now and then (after all he started as a gagman on italian films). Highly recommended, as it's chockful of action as well. The only let down is that Anchor Bay couldn't get hold of a complete dubbed version, so you'll see some bits of the film in italian with english subtitles (reason why I only give it four stars instead of the five it deserves). Other wise, the extras are great; we see interviews with both Nero and Milian. And it's also uncut and uncensored (and widescreen, of course). You won't regret buying this one, so do yourself a favor, and BUY IT!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
It was OK the price was good
Published 2 months ago by David F. Hepner
3.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyed the Spaghetti!
A fun movie against a serious backdrop("Mexican Revolution"). Milian and Nero, are at the top of their games. I would recommend it to any Western movie fan!... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Jerald Neely
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't let the terrible cover fool you
Looking at it, Companeros seems like some terrible undubbed Mexican western you'd find in a 2-for-$10 crate at some close-out video outlet, with a pan and scan fuzzy transfer,... Read more
Published 14 months ago by E. E. Kuersten
4.0 out of 5 stars Nero and Milan together
This is a great genre film. As violent as they come, but smarter than most. Th revolution of the Mexican peasants was better brought to the screen by The Mercenary, but Jack... Read more
Published 17 months ago by V. Sandoval
4.0 out of 5 stars A better movie than i thought!
Companeros is a movie starring Franco Nero as a swede selling arms to mexican revolutionaries and Tomas Milian as one of the rebels sent to escort him across the border to break a... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Scorpio
4.0 out of 5 stars This is an excerpt from a blog that I wrote
Another fine example of the Italian political Western, albeit a comic one. The plot commingles an arms dealer called the Swede (Nero); Vasco (Milian), a Che-like, Basque-born peon... Read more
Published 22 months ago by H. Pack
3.0 out of 5 stars Maybe Three and a Half
This is one of the better 'Spaghetti Westerns' out there but for my dollar, it still falls a bit short.

Here's the scoop. Read more
Published on January 26, 2012 by Eric Sanberg
4.0 out of 5 stars worthwhile
Strong spag western reminiscent of notable Leone films. Frantic pacing with excellent acting. The cryptic right-wing theme masquerading behind left-wing themes, as is typical for... Read more
Published on July 22, 2010 by E. Estes
2.0 out of 5 stars Companeros
This is a nonsense, no-redeeming-value spaghetti western. I watched the whole thing because I just KNEW it had to get better. It didn't. Read more
Published on February 14, 2010 by Robert B. Merry
3.0 out of 5 stars Another Spaghetti Western
SHORT REVIEW: I've seen a lot of Spaghetti Westerns, and this is just another one. Not bad, not great (thus, 3 stars). Read more
Published on February 10, 2010 by Grapey Grimes
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