The Good The Bad & The Ugly: Why Is It So Good?
- Published on: 2/25/2017
- The Good The Bad & The Ugly: Why Is It So Good?
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is a great movie to look back on. It made 5 times its money back, making it a big success. But even Clint Eastwood himself thought the movie
would do either really well or really bad.
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The good the bad & the ugly didn't have the greatest reception from critics at that time.
One of the most memorable criticisms from The LA Times
said that the movie should have been called
The Bad, The Dull and the Interminable"...
The main reason for this negativity was due to the movie
belonging to a not so popular sub genre, the Spaghetti Western...
which when compared to a Hollywood western
was considered as a cheap, inferior, foreign version
In your typical Hollywood Western, everything looked clean...
where the heroes were handsome,
and wore freshly pressed suits and had shiny new guns...
But in a Spaghetti or Italian Western thing were far more
gritty, dirty and violent
as a whole they were perceived as been more realistic
Its main characters weren't well groomed nor necessarily handsome...
The musical scores were pretty different, from the amazing high energy music by Enyo Morricone compared to the more stately orchestral scores by Elmer Bernstein, like in The Magnificent 7.
In the 1960s the Hollywood hero was usually a great gunslinger who faced insurmountable odds
taking on the bad guys and out smarting them.
They were usually unselfish and down to earth...
The main villains were very one dimensional, they're badness was not explained, and they were often an outcast...
which meant they were either feared or hated by the local townspeople.
However Italian films featured anti-heroes...
instead of the protagonist saving everyone,
the main character himself was either neutral
or more interested in personal gain.
While the bad guy was often as charismatic or powerful as the hero
in order to give the protagonist a real challenge.
In Hollywood westerns, the death of an antagonist
simply meant the triumph of the good over the bad...
going back home or having a
reunion with loved ones, concluded the story of the movie.
Whereas in its European counterpart, the death of the antagonist usually completed the narrative.
Sergio Leone had only directed a "fistful"
of low budget movies at this point of his career,
but you wouldn't think that watching this film...
What makes this movie truly amazing
is Leones scope and vision
He had the special ability to use silence to help build suspicion,
and paranoia when it came to one of his famous
-- Save Tuco scene
Or Leone would use a long pause
combined with music that slowly increased in tempo
to make his action scenes feel more exciting
and have a far greater payoff,
even though the action would be over within a blink of an eye
--End scene (sped up with timer, clint shoot next scene)
Leone's unique style involved
shots of scenery that were very pulled back,
where he would have small figures moving around in the distance,
these wide shots were then followed by tight close ups of faces,
giving you the audience this fantastic operatic feeling
whenever a new chapter began
Leone was great with people's faces...
he would deliberately hand pick his extras to find people who had very different looks and features...
he would then pan across them giving his shots an extra sense of realism
Leone also establishes a rule...
where a character's vision is limited by the sides of the frame,
everything outside the frame is invisible.
This allows you the viewer to see only from the perspective
of what the characters sees
So when Blondie and Tuco are heading towards the cemetery,
they don't notice the massive Union army in front of them
and neither do you.
Leone often thought that Hollywood Westerns had too much dialog,
so he had his characters say more by saying less...
Where most of them make eye contact with each other...
Pause and then start shooting!
Clint Eastwood as Blondie aka the good,
is easily recognizable due to his iconic brown hat,
poncho and fondness for cigarillos.
But apart from that, his character is pretty mysterious...
not much is known about him
he says very little, and technically isn't `good' in a traditional sense...
however, he has a certain sense of honour
and tries to do the right thing from time to time.
Tuco aka the Ugly is the exact opposite or his partner blondie,
he never stops talking in the The good the bad & the ugly
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