Tag Archives: Franco Nero

THE ORIGINAL DJANGO MOVIES

FRONTIERADO IS COMING AUGUST 7th!

The best Django, Franco Nero, played the gunslinger in Django, Django Strikes Again and (wink) Django’s Grand Return

Like Tarzan, James Bond and Sherlock Holmes the melancholy bounty hunter Django has been presented in various incarnations and with wildly differing continuity. And like soccer the Django movies have been an enormous success almost everywhere except the U.S. 

The great Franco Nero created the role in 1966 in a film so popular in Europe (but banned in the UK for its still- controversial violence) that it spawned a legion of sequels. Some sequels starred Franco Nero or others in the role of Django, while others were just unrelated westerns whose distributors simply  attached a phony Django title to them, sometimes redoing the dubbing to have the lead character referred to as Django, other times not bothering.

Original Django poster Balladeer’s Blog helpfully presents a synopsis of the films featuring (legitimately or not) the most durable Eurowestern hero of them all. And, yes, if you’re wondering, the western bounty hunter Django was indeed the reason George Lucas named that outer space bounty hunter Jango Fett.

DJANGO (1966) – In 1867 Mexico Django, a veteran of the Union army in the Civil War, seeks revenge on Major Jackson, the Confederate officer behind his wife’s death. Jackson and his still-loyal troops, now turned  outright Klansmen, are, like so many other fleeing Confederates, fighting for the Mexican Emperor Maximillian in the war to keep his throne.   Django battles Jackson’s hooded thugs, even ambushing dozens with the Gatling Gun he keeps concealed in a coffin. When he’s out of men Major Jackson calls on Maximillian’s Imperial troopers for reinforcements and prepares to face Django and the Mexican rebel troops he’s fallen in with. For a detailed review of this unforgettable film click here: https://glitternight.com/2012/08/08/the-original-django-and-two-blaxploitation-westerns-a-primer-for-django-unchained/

DJANGO SHOOTS FIRST (1966) – AKA He Who Shoots First. Django comes into an enormous inheritance from his murdered father, an inheritance he learns he must share with his late father’s unscrupulous business partner, Mr Cluster. Django starts blowing away a host of bad guys as he tries to piece together who is responsible for his father’s death.

DJANGO, A BULLET FOR YOU (1966) – Django uses his guns to protect a group of downtrodden farmers from the villainous, land-grabbing town boss of Wagon Valley. He Continue reading

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DJANGO: THE DEFINITIVE BIOGRAPHY PART 2

FOR PART ONE OF THIS TONGUE IN CHEEK BIOGRAPHY OF DJANGO CLICK HERE: https://glitternight.com/2012/09/18/django-the-definitive-biography/ 

With Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained coming out soon Balladeer’s Blog has been taking plenty of looks at the original Django movies as well as presenting this fictional biography of the gunslinger.

After Django’s 1862 adventure with the Gatling Gun and Belle Boyd he returned to his unit, the 7th Kansas Cavalry AKA “Jennison’s Jayhawkers”. He arrived shortly before the 7th’s participation in the Battle of Iuka on September 19th. It was a busy autumn for Django and his comrades, as their unit also fought in the Battle of Corinth on October 3rd and 4th, with their pursuit of the retreating Confederates going on until the 12th of the month.

As of October 31st the 7th was formally under General Ulysses S Grant as part of his Continue reading

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DJANGO: THE DEFINITIVE BIOGRAPHY

 Yes, with the upcoming release of Quentin Tarantino’s reboot of the Django saga in his western Django Unchained, it’s been a veritable Djangofest here at Balladeer’s Blog.  

In the style of my Frontierado Sagas here’s a thoroughly tongue- in-cheek biography of the most famous Spaghetti Western hero of them all.

The Wild West gunfighter known to the world as Django blazed his way into the annals of history first as a Jayhawker, then as a Union soldier in the Civil War and finally as a bounty hunter.

His blood-feud with the former Confederate officer Major Edward F Jackson over the death of Django’s first wife is as well-known as the clash between the Clantons and the Earps in Tombstone, AZ. Movies have distorted many of the facts of this legendary gunman’s life just as they have with other western figures like Doc Holliday, Billy the Kid and many others. The many films about Django feature wildly contradictory information and part of the purpose of this biography will be to illustrate the true events underlying the cinematic myths about this operatic figure.

The real name of the man eventually known as Django was Continue reading

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DJANGO THEATER: A LOOK AT THE FILMS OF THE MOST DURABLE SPAGHETTI WESTERN GUNSLINGER

The best Django, Franco Nero, played the gunslinger in Django, Django Strikes Again and (wink) Django’s Grand Return

Like Tarzan, James Bond and Sherlock Holmes the melancholy bounty hunter Django has been presented in various incarnations and with wildly differing continuity. And like soccer the Django movies have been an enormous success almost everywhere except the U.S. The gunman’s most recent iteration will be as an African American in Django Unchained, Quentin Tarantino’s upcoming reboot of the Spaghetti Western hero’s saga.

The great Franco Nero created the role in 1966 in a film so popular in Europe (but banned in the UK for its still- controversial violence) that it spawned a legion of sequels. Some sequels starred Franco Nero or others in the role of Django, while others were just unrelated westerns whose distributors simply  attached a phony Django title to them, sometimes redoing the dubbing to have the lead character referred to as Django, other times not bothering.

Original Django poster In anticipation of the mad rush for the various Django films that will presumably follow the release of the Tarantino reboot with Jamie Foxx Balladeer’s Blog helpfully presents a synopsis of the films featuring (legitimately or not) the most durable Eurowestern hero of them all. And, yes, if you’re wondering, the western bounty hunter Django was indeed the reason George Lucas named that outer space bounty hunter Jango Fett.

DJANGO (1966) – In 1867 Mexico Django, a veteran of the Union army in the Civil War, seeks revenge on Major Jackson, the Confederate officer behind his wife’s death. Jackson and his still-loyal troops, now turned  outright Klansmen, are, like so many other fleeing Confederates,  fighting for the Mexican Emperor Maximillian in the war to keep his throne.   Django battles Jackson’s hooded thugs, even ambushing dozens with the Gatling Gun he keeps concealed in a coffin. When he’s out of men Major Jackson calls on Maximillian’s Imperial troopers for reinforcements and prepares to face Django and the Mexican rebel troops he’s fallen in with. For a detailed review of this unforgettable film click here: https://glitternight.com/2012/08/08/the-original-django-and-two-blaxploitation-westerns-a-primer-for-django-unchained/

DJANGO SHOOTS FIRST (1966) – AKA He Who Shoots First. Django comes into an enormous inheritance from his murdered father, an inheritance he learns he must share with his late father’s unscrupulous business partner, Mr Cluster. Django starts blowing away a host of bad guys as he tries to piece together who is responsible for his father’s death.

DJANGO, A BULLET FOR YOU (1966) – Django uses his guns to protect a group of downtrodden farmers from the villainous, land-grabbing town boss of Wagon Valley. He Continue reading

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THE ORIGINAL DJANGO AND TWO BLAXPLOITATION WESTERNS: A PRIMER FOR DJANGO UNCHAINED

 The upcoming release of Quentin Tarantino’s reboot of the seminal Spaghetti Western saga Django wreaked some minor havoc with my recent Frontierado holiday posts. I had been working on a draft for a review of the original Django and its central figure contrasted with other EuroWestern heroes like Charles Bronson’s Harmonica, Gianni Garko’s Sartana, Terence Hill’s Trinity, Tony Anthony’s Stranger and of course Clint Eastwood’s Man With No Name.

I also had a draft in progress for a review of two blaxploitation westerns from the 1970s which featured a former slave turned gunslinger taking on former Confederates in the Wild West.

A few days before I was to publish those reviews the airwaves and the web started crawling with what seemed like ’round the clock trailers for Django Unchained, Tarantino’s reboot of the story, this time with the title figure an African American who goes from slavery to a career as a bounty hunter gunning down southern rednecks in the Wild West.

Instantly my two reviews, right down to AN ACTUAL JOKE I WROTE THAT, ASTONISHINGLY ENOUGH, SHOWS UP IN THE TRAILER FOR DJANGO UNCHAINED, seemed like Continue reading

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THE MOST LAUGHABLY WEIRD SPAGHETTI WESTERNS

Django Kill

Django Kill

What better way to start Frontierado Week than with a look at some of the most obscure but laughably weird Italian westerns? And what better way to start that list than with one of the countless  Spaghetti Westerns with phony Django titles?

The upcoming release of Quentin  Tarantino’s Django Unchained   will  reboot the Django saga by making him an African American and pitting him against racist villains out west. This will nicely blend Django’s bounty hunter tale with the 70s blaxploitation westerns  starring Fred Williamson and others as former slaves blowing away Neo-Confederates in the Wild West.

Franco Nero starred as the original Django but sadly has just a cameo in the reboot. The original movie was a monumental success everywhere in the world except the U.S. back in 1966. There was only one other “official” Django movie (also starring Nero) but there were literally nearly a hundred false Django movies featuring different actors in the lead role (my favorite being Terence Hill) or that just plain retitled and redubbed other Italian westerns to make them seem like Django movies.

1. DJANGO KILL (1967) – Originally titled If You Live, Shoot!, this was one of the many Eurowesterns to be re-released to theaters years later as a phony Django movie just so it could clean up on the guaranteed cash cow of the Django name.

In this one our pseudo-Django finds himself involved with a kidnapped teen boy, the gay outlaws who have kidnapped and raped him (seriously), and their Wild West castle (?) where they torture their victims medieval-style, including roasting them on spits. Pseudo-Django shoots gold bullets in this flick and greedy townspeople rip open the corpses of the gunmen who fall to him just to get at the precious metal.

Even worse is the scene where the gold-hungry townspeople rip open the wounds of people who were just injured by the gold bullets, adding wince-inducing screams to the tableau.

2. THE PRICE OF POWER (1969) – The John F Kennedy assassination gets restaged in the Old West in this movie that Continue reading

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