What is a spaghetti western

Lexicon of film terms

Spaghetti Western

also: Spaghetti Western; often only briefly: Italo; .: Spaghetti Western

The Spaghetti Western developed parallel to the American Late Western in Italy in the mid-1960s. In contrast to the classic American western, the world of the good is radically abolished in the spaghetti western. Here little consideration is given to American myths, legends and heroic gestures, but the films are fantasy structures made of action, brutality (in the later phase also made of slapstick and irony). Formally, they shine with rapid zooms, indulge in slow motion and the like. Effects that would have been too flashy for a classic western. Nevertheless, the spaghetti western has had a noticeable influence on American western production since the 1960s.
The Italo is shaped by the directors Sergio Corbucci, who created the "Ringo" series (Ringo oro, 1965, played by Guiliano Gemma) and the "Django" series (Django, 1966, played by Franco Nero), and by Sergio Leone, who played Clint Eastwood in Per un Pugno di Dollari (For a few dollars, 1964) and its follow-up films Per qualche Dollari in piu (For a few more dollars, 1965) and Il buono, il gross, il cattivo (Two glorious scoundrels, 1967) staged as a "man without a name". The character of a series belonged to the genre from the start. The film music for many spaghetti westerns comes from Ennio Morricone, who made a decisive contribution to the specific aesthetics of spaghetti westerns with his film music. The spaghetti western reaches its climax in Leones Once Upon a Time in the West (Once Upon a Time in the West, 1968) and Corbuccis Il grande silenzio (Corpses pave his way, 1969).

The new, young and yet broken heroes of the spaghetti westerns already marked the cover of the spaghetti westerns for comedy and parody, which E.B. Clucher (i.e. Enzo Barboni) brought to a first climax in his films with Terence Hill and Bud Spencer (Lo chiamavano Trinità / The right and left hands of the devil, 1970, Continuavano a chiamarlo Trinità / Four fists for a hallelujah, 1971), in which the hero and masculinity cult of the genre is parodied. The climax of this development towards a western parody is Tonino Valerii's western parody based on Leone's script The mio nome è Nessuno (My name is Nobody, 1973), in which seriousness and satire collide, with Terence Hill representing the new parodic genre and Henry Fonda representing the world of the classic western.

Literature: Baumgarten, Oliver: The breath of death blows around them: the spaghetti westerns - the story of a genre. 2., ext. Aufl. Bochum: Schnitt-Verlag 1999. - Bruckner, Ulrich P .: For a few more bodies. The spaghetti western from its beginnings until today. Berlin: Schwarzkopf and Schwarzkopf 2002. - de España, Rafael: Breve historia del Western Mediterranean. La recreación europea de un mito americano. Barcelona: Glâenat 2002. - Hughes, Howard: Once upon a time in the Italian West: the filmgoers' guide to spaghetti westerns. London [...]: Tauris 2004.


Spaghetti Western: hero characters

Article last changed on 10/13/2012

Author: GFPB