An anonymous, but deadly man rides into a town torn by war between two factions, the Baxters and the Rojos. Instead of fleeing or dying, as most others would do, the man schemes to play the two sides off against each other, getting rich in the bargain.
The first of the three
‘A Fistful of Dollars’ is the first from Sergio Leone’s trilogy about “The Man with No Name”. The other two movies are ‘For a Few Dollars More’ and the famous ‘The Good, the Bad and the Ugly’. Although ‘The Good, the Bad and the Ugly’ is considered the best this one comes pretty close. It is a remake of Akira Kurosawa’s ‘Yojimbo’ and it comes also pretty close to that movie. It was also the first real Spaghetti Western.
Clint Eastwood is “The Man with No Name” who comes to a small town where two families run the place. Both families hate each other and he thinks he can make a lot of money with playing both parties against each other. This is basically the main story. There are some sub-plots, one of them involves Marisol (Marianne Koch) who is taken by a leader of one of the families. Her husband and child still live in the town.
For me it was not the story that made this movie interesting. It was the whole atmosphere. I like all Leone’s westerns for that reason. Of course some are better than others, but they are never boring. The way we see Eastwood kill four man early in the movie is simply spectacular.
This no ‘Once Upon a Time in the West’ or even ‘The Good, the Bad and the Ugly’ but we have the same atmosphere, the same kind of score by Ennio Morricone and a Clint Eastwood at the beginning of a great career.