THE MERCENARY (a professional gun; revenge of a gunfighter; il mercenario; salario para matar) (1968 ITALY SPAIN) D/W: SERGIO CORBUCCI W: ADRIANO BOLZONI/SERGIO SPINA/LUCIANO VINCENZONI/GIORGIO ARLORIO/FRANCO SOLINAS P: ALBERTO GRIMALDI
Franco Nero is a Polish quick-draw mercenary who`s hired to escort some silver from a mine in Mexico to the U.S. during the Mexican Revolution, but revolutionary wannabe Paco (Tony Musante, who`s teeth are too white) has just overthrown the place with his men, and the silver is trapped under some rubble. Instead Nero manipulates Musante by leading his revolution, but pocketing a daily wage and a percentge of the spoils. Jack Palance is another sadistic merc called Curly (who bares his ass) on their trail for the goverment. With Giovanna Ralli, Eduardo Fajardo, Lorenzo Robledo, Franco Ressel, Tito Garcia, Angel Alvarez, Julio Pena, Juan Cazalilla, Bruno Corazzari, Alvaro De Luna, Jose Risego and Raf Baldassare. This western has some interesting elements, memorable scenes (including Musante as a rodeo clown) and everything about the production is first class (including Ennio Morricone and Bruno Nicolai`s score), but it`s somewhat plodding, and never really hits it`s stride. Not among Corbucci`s finest. He re-tooled it as COMPANEROS.

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