SHOOT THE LIVING, PRAY FOR THE DEAD
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(1971) Klaus Kinski, Victoria Zinny, Dino Strano, Paolo Casella. Fierce tale about a gang of killers who head off for stolen gold in Mexico. In the end only two survive and they battle each other for the valued treasure. Not a perfect spaghetti western, but still most enjoyable. Kinski is great as a crazy killer. Color, scope, 35mm.
When sold by Amazon.com, this product will be manufactured on demand using DVD-R recordable media. Amazon.com's standard return policy will apply.
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It's made to order, so you'll be receiving a DVD-R burned with the film. Make sure your DVD player can handle computer-burned DVD's. My PS3 played it perfectly, however my buddy's older player had some issues with the disc and didn't play back properly. It's packaged very professionally and delivered promptly (1 week to LA).
For a film that's almost 40 years old, made by a production company that folded right afterward, it's a miracle enough that this title is even available. The quality of the burn is very good. Some artificating is visible in the blacks, and the original Cinemascope aspect ratio appears to have been lost. But the picture is only noticeably cut off in rare, select shots.
This film was notable in S-Western history for it's rare attention to story and plot. Most S-Westerns are low on story, high on violence. 'Pray for the Living..." is the opposite. Great plot twists included into a solid western storyline. Klaus Kinski, if you're familiar with his unique approach to acting, is as crazy and unpredictable as he ever was. Well shot and well acted.
Order with confidence (as long as you check your DVD player) and enjoy a rare find. 4 out 5, coming up short only on the DVD-R aspect and loss of original aspect ratio.
***PLEASE NOTE MY REVIEW & RATING ARE FOR THE FILM ONLY-NOT THE DVD-R TRANSFER ADVERTISED HERE***
Klaus Kinsky and his outlaw gang rob the Phoenix bank and need to escape to Mexico to evade the law. A mysterious stranger (actor, Paolo Casella credited as Paul Sullivan), meets up with the gang at an out-of-the way saloon and kindly offers to be their guide for half of the gold. But is that his real motive? Giusseppe Vari directs this amazing Euro Western which has a plot that fits the description of a simple revenge story yet the movie manages to keep the viewer engaged with suspense, reasoning and character development. SHOOT THE LIVING, PRAY FOR THE DEAD has a lot going for it. Many of the supporting characters including the two females are more than just one-dimensional figures and have backgrounds and motives which help maintain interest and keep the story real. The shining star here is baddie, Klaus Kinsky who is completing engaging as the psychotic, unpredictable, misogynistic, foul-mouthed, bandit who can go from quiet and sympathetic one moment to loud and violent the next. The sets and cinematography are wonderful and there is a nice transition from the first half, which takes place inside a dark, claustrophobic rundown bar, to the remainder of film which was filmed in the hot, bright, sparse & rugged outdoor terrain. The bleak landscape helps emphasize the uneasiness of the characters as the group travels to Mexico. Mario Migliardi's diverse music soundtrack is perfect for film with piano & harmonica instrumentation and highlights action with interesting sounds at the right moments. I highly recommend seeing this film.
As noted above: I did not purchase this particular DVD-R. The copy I bought on Amazon is a Portuguese import by OCEAN but was listed as no longer available after I bought and received my copy. Hence, I'm sharing my assessment of this excellent film here and hope that it will encourage other Euro Western fans to check it out. I rate this film 5 out of 5 bullets, but the 4 star rating listed is a compromise, since I haven't seen this transfer. Thanks!