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FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE

           FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE ($25) is the second film in the Clint Eastwood/Sergio Leone “Man With No Name” trilogy and the one that should be subtitled A Tale Of Two Bounty Hunters.  Eastwood’s character, referred to as Manko in this film, earns his money working as a bounty killer.   Bounty killer is the same thing as a bounty hunter, except that all the criminals with a price on their heads usually end up dead.  FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE also stars Lee Van Cleef as Colonel Douglas Mortimer, another bounty hunter who works in the same fashion as Manko- Wanted Dead or Alive almost always ends with Mortimer using a dead body to collect his bounty.  When El Indio (Gian Maria Volonté) breaks out of a Mexican jail, leaving only a single guard alive to tell the tale, both Manko and Mortimer wind up on the trail of the $10,000.00 bounty.  Manko and Mortimer cross paths in the town of El Paso, where they both come to realize that El Indio intends to rob the back and make off with the safe which has been carefully disguised as a piece of furniture.  Although Manko and Mortimer agree to work together to capture El Indio and his gang of bandits, both bounty hunters distrust one another enough to play a game of cross and double cross, but neither bounty hunter ever gets the upper hand. 

Like A FISTFUL OF DOLLARS, FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE is a highly stylized “spaghetti western” filled with carefully orchestrated violence that plays within the most cinematic of screen compositions.  FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE climaxes in the traditional western fashion with extended gunfight that leaves the heroes facing the villains in a final deadly confrontation.  The largely European cast of FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE also includes Mara Krup, Luigi Pistilli and Joseph Egger.  Also look for Klaus Kinski in the wonderfully overplayed role of the Hunchback bandit.

            MGM Home Entertainment has made FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE available on DVD wide screen in a presentation that has not been enhanced for playback on 16:9 displays.  The transfer restores most of the film’s 2.35:1 Techniscope aspect ratio, but the image isn’t perfect.  As it stands, the image on FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE is reasonably sharp and detailed, but film grain is noticeable in a number of places and the film element has its share of blemishes.  Color reproduction is pretty strong, with appealing flesh tones and better saturated hues than I’ve seen in the past.  Blacks are fairly accurate and the image displays respectable contrast.  As a fan of this particular trilogy of “spaghetti westerns,” I would say that FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE deserves a new 16:9 enhanced transfer, from better elements (that I hope still exist somewhere in Europe). 

The Dolby Digital monaural soundtrack is respectable, but this track is not a sonic wonder.  Let’s face it; the entire English soundtrack was created in postproduction, so synchronization is far from accurate.  Fidelity doesn’t run too high, with the sound being a bit harsh on top and lacking a significant bottom end.  The track is worth amplifying for Ennio Morricone’s music, but little else.  There was an occasional crackle on the track and a mild hiss becomes discernable if the volume is turned up too high.  A French language soundtrack is also encoded onto the DVD, as are English, French and Spanish subtitles. 

The interactive menus are very basic, delivering access to the standard scene selection and set up features, as well as a theatrical trailer.

 
FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE 



 

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DVD reviews are Copyright © 1999 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.


 

 

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