The Curator of Schlock #147 by Jeff Shuster
A Noose for Django
A bunch of guys get shot. The End.
Yeehaw. I know I promised you, my ever so patient audience, a review of A Pistol for Ringo two weeks ago, but I’ve decided to postpone that review. As it turns out, A Pistol for Ringo takes place around Christmastime and I know I’ll be struggling to find some decent Christmas movies to review this year due to my post-1979 ban. So we’ll be covering A Noose for Django instead. There is no character named Django in this movie. For that matter, there isn’t a noose in this movie either. This title is one big old lie. We’re off to a rocky start.
A Noose for Django came out in 1969 and was directed by Sergio Garrone. He also directed Django the Bastard and Kill Django…Kill First, one of which features a character named Django. He also directed a film titled Terrible Day at the Big Gundown. I don’t know what a gundown is. I assume it involves gunslingers getting gunned down. Apparantly, Sergio Leone directed a western called The Big Gundown which is considered second only to his “Man with No Name” trilogy so I should check that one out.
What is A Noose for Django about? I have to be honest with you folks, I had trouble following this one. Wikipedia summarizes the movie in one sentence, “A pair of bounty hunters team up to hunt down an outlaw gang that has been sneaking illegal immigrants over the border to sell as slaves.” Ummm. That’s sort of true. See, there’s a wealthy American landowner named Mr. Fargo (Riccardo Garrone) who is sneaking Mexican peasants over to work his farm/plantation? It’s not really made clear. I think he promises to pay them once the work is done, then has his gang of bandits murder them instead. The US Army doesn’t approve and they tell him to knock it off.
There are two bounty hunters in this movie. Anthony Steffen plays Johnny Brandon, a stubble faced bounty hunter who keeps insisting that he’s not in it for the money. I thought the purpose of being a bounty hunter was collecting bounties, but what do I know?
The other bounty hunter is a preacher named Everett Murdock (William Berger). I like this guy. He’s got the whole Solomon Kane thing going on. Plus, he carries the coolest gun I’ve ever seen in a western, a kind of six barrel shotgun that you do not want to be on the receiving end of.
Brandon and Murdock decide to team up to take down Mr. Fargo and his gang of bandits. No wonder Mr. Fargo can’t afford to pay the peasants what he owes them. He has at least a hundred bandits working for him. Brandon and Murdock keep killing Fargo’s henchmen until it’s revealed that Murdock and Fargo had actually worked out a deal to kill Fargo’s own men and collect on the bounty money. This kind of leaves Brandon out in the cold. There’s a three-way showdown at the end. Brandon wins. Justice is served. Blah. Blah. Blah.