Friday, 31 May 2013
The Great Silence 
Sergio Corbucci’s The Great Silence might not be as iconic or popular as his Django, but it is considered by many, including Spaghetti Western aficionados, as his best work. This harsh, bleak and disturbing film with strong socio-political undercurrents remains a rarity for having brought two of the most legendary European actors together – Jean-Luis Trintignant and Klaus Kinski. Silence (Tringtignant) is a mute gunslinger incredibly adroit with his custom-built weapon, while Lolo (Kinski) is a sadistic bounty hunter who kills men with rewards on their heads. The two are put on a scintillating collision course when Silence falls in love with Pauline (Vonetta Mc Gee), a beautiful widow, and decides to avenge for her grief by killing Lolo. Corbucci sure loved having his heroes being put into physical disadvantage before the climax, but the much anticipated showdown never fully materializes; rather, it ended on such an anti-climactic and pessimistic note that he had to release another version with a happier finale. Though tad uneven in terms of direction, script and acting of the support cast, the themes of class struggle and racism, and the moody atmosphere, added depth to the it. The two renowned lead actors were eminently good; Kinski, in fact, was particularly memorably for his gleefully immoral turn. Set amidst the Great Blizzard of 1899, the stunning and foreboding white landscapes added a menacing tone to the film’s character. And Ennio Morricone added another feather to his vaunted cap with the rapturous score that superbly alternated between edginess and melancholia, and used everything from violins to trumpets to even sitars for the rousing sound effects.
Director: Sergio Corbucci
Genre: Western/Spaghetti Western/Revisionist Western