For a Few Dollars More (R)
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This came out in 1965, in Italy, and in 1967, in the U.S. It's the second movie in the "Dollars" trilogy (following Fistful of Dollars), also known as the "Man with No Name" trilogy (though in each film the main character, played by Clint Eastwood, has a different nickname; in this one, he's called Manco). I don't think it's an actual trilogy, but rather that idea was used as a marketing tool in the U.S.; Eastwood may actually be playing a different character in each movie, it's not really clear.
It's about a couple of bounty hunters (or as they're referred to in this movie, "bounty killers"). One is Manco, the other is Col. Douglas Mortimer (Lee Van Cleef). We see each of them take out a different bounty; I suppose this is meant to demonstrate that they're both pretty badass, although both of the outlaws they took out seemed pretty pathetic. But then there's a bigger bounty they're both after: El Indio, the leader of a gang of outlaws who has recently been broken out of jail by his men. Manco, Mortimer, and Indio's gang all end up in El Paso, where Indio is planning to rob a bank. Manco and Mortimer start out as rivals, but soon decide to team up and split the reward for Indio and his gang. Of course, it's not going to be easy. And I don't want to say any more about the plot.
Throughout the movie, I was trying to decide whether I liked it slightly more or slightly less than the first movie. Ultimately, I'm not really sure. I think in some ways it's probably better than the original, but it's also less iconic. And I guess I enjoyed them about equally, which is to say not as much as I would have hoped. I will say that I like the fact that Mortimer is obviously a better gunslinger than Manco (though Manco is pretty good, himself). Oh yeah, and there was a crazy old guy called the Prophet, whom Manco talked with at one point. I liked him, he was amusing. And there are a couple of flashbacks to how Indio acquired a pocket watch that also plays music like a music box (which is something I don't think I've ever heard of, but it's a neat idea). I don't want to reveal what happens in the flashbacks, except to say Indio is just a horrible excuse for a human being. (And there's one very dramatic and powerful moment in the second flashback that totally shocked me... and apparently shocked Indio, too. And it's probably the single most pivotal event in the entire movie.) And I guess that's all I can think to say.
Followed by The Good, the Bad and the Ugly