The Great Silence (Il grande silenzio) Reviews

  • Nov 29, 2020

    An exceptionally powerful and grim western.

    An exceptionally powerful and grim western.

  • Nov 10, 2020

    A stylish "Spaghetti Western" with a great soundtrack by Ennio Morricone

    A stylish "Spaghetti Western" with a great soundtrack by Ennio Morricone

  • Aug 14, 2020

    *Spoiler Warning* Though I've known about this film for a while, I fortunately managed to watch it without knowing its ending. I heard it was surprising, but that was about it. While this film didn't wow me like my favorite Westerns have (which isn't to say I have any particular issues with it per se), I found it to be a truly uncharacteristic entry into the genre, whose themes resonated with me for a while. This atypical Western film initially starts with many of the mythical pleasures of Leone's Dollars Trilogy. The initial depiction of Silence brings to attention The Man With No Name in the way he seems smarter and faster than his enemies and where the suspense isn't focused so much on "Will he die?" as much as it's centered around "How soon will his enemies die?". Mute due to an injury he faced when he was a child, his character behaves in a way that often makes him feel like a feeling. The way he moves from area to area, always aware of his surroundings and always prepared when he gets into combat, blowing his enemies away with ease and precision, makes him seem like a mysterious figure. Loco, the leader of a gang of ruthless bounty hunters, is initially shown to be intimidating, like a typical Western villain. Though Loco seems better equipped to fight Silence than the other bounty hunters in the film, he doesn't appear to be a match for him. Or, at least, this describes the first act. What starts out as a homage to Sergio Leone soon develops into something more complex and hard-hitting. Discussing this film without spoiling its ending is a difficult task, because so much of what I love about it goes back to its ending considering the strength of how well it builds to it. The buildup in question concerns the effect the handling of Silence and Loco has on the viewer as they watch the film. The more time spent with the characters, one begins to notice subtle changes in both their demeanors, changes that soon hang on the viewer and reek of an unthinkable dread, like Loco not falling for Silence's taunts or Silence being beaten up by his enemies twice. With Loco though, "reaffirmation" better describes him as "change" implies he grows in intelligence and skill as the film rolls along when, in actuality, these traits are clearly inside him from the start. It's just that these reaffirmations increase in dread throughout the film as contrasting Silence's progressively weakening demeanor to that of Loco's slowly informs the viewer how difficult taking on Loco will be for Silence, giving the illusion that he undergoes significant change and has acquired Silence's initial depiction. Once Silence encounters Loco, his initially impenetrable demeanor is slowly rendered obsolete and is replaced by an unconvincing facade. As the film comes to a close, this subtle dread grows to an unbearable level, leading to one of the darkest, most unforgiving endings I've ever seen in a film. It's a realistic depiction of what probably would've happened in real life. Overall, I really liked this film. The way it builds to its ending is really unique for the genre and it lingered with me for a while. Though this isn't quite a great film for me, I'll definitely keep an eye out for Corbucci in the future (this is the first film I've seen from him).

    *Spoiler Warning* Though I've known about this film for a while, I fortunately managed to watch it without knowing its ending. I heard it was surprising, but that was about it. While this film didn't wow me like my favorite Westerns have (which isn't to say I have any particular issues with it per se), I found it to be a truly uncharacteristic entry into the genre, whose themes resonated with me for a while. This atypical Western film initially starts with many of the mythical pleasures of Leone's Dollars Trilogy. The initial depiction of Silence brings to attention The Man With No Name in the way he seems smarter and faster than his enemies and where the suspense isn't focused so much on "Will he die?" as much as it's centered around "How soon will his enemies die?". Mute due to an injury he faced when he was a child, his character behaves in a way that often makes him feel like a feeling. The way he moves from area to area, always aware of his surroundings and always prepared when he gets into combat, blowing his enemies away with ease and precision, makes him seem like a mysterious figure. Loco, the leader of a gang of ruthless bounty hunters, is initially shown to be intimidating, like a typical Western villain. Though Loco seems better equipped to fight Silence than the other bounty hunters in the film, he doesn't appear to be a match for him. Or, at least, this describes the first act. What starts out as a homage to Sergio Leone soon develops into something more complex and hard-hitting. Discussing this film without spoiling its ending is a difficult task, because so much of what I love about it goes back to its ending considering the strength of how well it builds to it. The buildup in question concerns the effect the handling of Silence and Loco has on the viewer as they watch the film. The more time spent with the characters, one begins to notice subtle changes in both their demeanors, changes that soon hang on the viewer and reek of an unthinkable dread, like Loco not falling for Silence's taunts or Silence being beaten up by his enemies twice. With Loco though, "reaffirmation" better describes him as "change" implies he grows in intelligence and skill as the film rolls along when, in actuality, these traits are clearly inside him from the start. It's just that these reaffirmations increase in dread throughout the film as contrasting Silence's progressively weakening demeanor to that of Loco's slowly informs the viewer how difficult taking on Loco will be for Silence, giving the illusion that he undergoes significant change and has acquired Silence's initial depiction. Once Silence encounters Loco, his initially impenetrable demeanor is slowly rendered obsolete and is replaced by an unconvincing facade. As the film comes to a close, this subtle dread grows to an unbearable level, leading to one of the darkest, most unforgiving endings I've ever seen in a film. It's a realistic depiction of what probably would've happened in real life. Overall, I really liked this film. The way it builds to its ending is really unique for the genre and it lingered with me for a while. Though this isn't quite a great film for me, I'll definitely keep an eye out for Corbucci in the future (this is the first film I've seen from him).

  • Jun 10, 2020

    ‘The Great Silence’ is a bleak and bloody vision of the Old West, and yet, it is visually stunning and endlessly entertaining. Sergio Corbucci has shown, once again, that he is a master of spaghetti westerns, and of course, Ennio Morricone provides an impeccable score. Accompanied by Klaus Kinski at his most engaging, it’s a must-see for any fan of grittier cinema.

    ‘The Great Silence’ is a bleak and bloody vision of the Old West, and yet, it is visually stunning and endlessly entertaining. Sergio Corbucci has shown, once again, that he is a master of spaghetti westerns, and of course, Ennio Morricone provides an impeccable score. Accompanied by Klaus Kinski at his most engaging, it’s a must-see for any fan of grittier cinema.

  • Jul 14, 2019

    A movie treasure. This is not a Sergio Leone movie, but it's a great piece of cinema in the spaghetti genre; it has numerous brilliant scenes and the whole bleak atmosphere is very oppressive, and, of course, the ending is just jaw-dropping, which is a rare thing, even in a non-Hollywood movie. The cast is what a cinephile would like no matter what: Trintinian and Klaus Kinski; a must-see.

    A movie treasure. This is not a Sergio Leone movie, but it's a great piece of cinema in the spaghetti genre; it has numerous brilliant scenes and the whole bleak atmosphere is very oppressive, and, of course, the ending is just jaw-dropping, which is a rare thing, even in a non-Hollywood movie. The cast is what a cinephile would like no matter what: Trintinian and Klaus Kinski; a must-see.

  • Apr 28, 2019

    Henry Pollicut, a corrupt Utahn banker and justice of the peace, has a man named Gordon and his wife murdered by two bounty killers. To prevent Gordon's son from giving them away, one of the killers slices the boy's throat, rendering him permanently mute. Years later, in 1898, a severe blizzard has swept the frontier, bringing privation to the town of Snow Hill. As a result, much of the community is forced to steal in order to survive. Pollicut, seeking to make a profit, places prices on the thieves' heads, attracting the attention of a bounty killer gang led by "Loco" (Klaus Kinski). As they prey on the outlaws, Gordon's son, now going by the moniker "Silence" (Jean-Louis Trintignant), works with the bandits and their allies to fight against the killers. Silence operates on a principle whereby he provokes his enemies into drawing their weapons first so he can kill them in self-defense with his Mauser C96. One of the outlaws, James Middleton, leaves the safety of the group to be with his wife, Pauline (Vonetta McGee). James is subsequently killed by Loco when he takes Pauline hostage. Vengeful, Pauline writes to Silence, requesting him to kill Loco... "The Great Silence" (Italian: Il grande silenzio) is a 1968 revisionist Spaghetti Western film directed and co-written by Sergio Corbucci. Conceived by Corbucci as a politically-charged allegory inspired by the deaths of Che Guevara and Malcolm X, the film's plot takes place in Utah prior to the Great Blizzard of 1899. Distributed in most territories by 20th Century Fox, The Great Silence was theatrically released to a mediocre commercial reception in Italy, but it fared better in other countries. Controversial for its bleak and dark tone, the film's reputation grew, and it gained a cult following in the wake of its release. Having received several theatrical re-releases, most notably in 2012 and 2017, The Great Silence is now widely regarded by fans and authorities on Spaghetti Westerns as one of the greatest films of the genre, and is acknowledged as Corbucci's masterpiece. Praise has gone to the acting, the utilization of snowbound landscapes, Ennio Morricone's score, and the film's subversion of several conventions of the Western film genre. Time Out gave the film a mostly positive review, writing, "While Django remains the erratic Corbucci's best picture, this slightly later spaghetti Western does well by an inventive set-up [...] between the bullets there's engaging stuff from the two stars and an unmistakable chill in the air". Film critic Leonard Maltin praised the film, awarding it 3 1/2 out of a possible 4 stars. In his review he wrote that The Great Silence is a "brutal, bleakly beautiful spaghetti Western filmed on stark locations in the Dolomites, with one of the most uncompromising and unforgettable finales ever filmed". In his analysis of the Spaghetti Western genre, Alex Cox described The Great Silence as Corbucci's "tightest, most relentless Western; his best and his bleakest. It's shot in his trademark messy, over-edited, jerky-zoom style, and its telephoto close-ups are frequently out of focus. Yet it is incredibly beautiful". He voiced praise for Ippoliti's strategy of "shooting through things" (a marked improvement over his work on Navajo Joe), the tight script, the strong female characters and the tragic nature of the ending, rooted in Corbucci's pessimism towards the deaths of radical political leaders. "The Great Silence" is a very wobbly Spaghetti western B-movie in my opinion and not as good/bad as Sergio Corbuccis "Django". I red how this film has become a cult favourite and how subversive it is conceptually which it was for sure in 1968, but not something you would raise an eyebrow for today I would say. It is a dark, eerie, cynical, violent film with a bleak surprise ending. We also get beautiful snowbound landscapes and Ennio Morricone's score. However, we also get wobbly acting, dubbing, strange editing with plotholes and a strange match of the leads in Kinski and Trintignant. But, there are scenes that are intriguing as well and I do like Vonetta McGee. "The Great Silence" is a B-movie as said, but there is something intriguing about it nevertheless.

    Henry Pollicut, a corrupt Utahn banker and justice of the peace, has a man named Gordon and his wife murdered by two bounty killers. To prevent Gordon's son from giving them away, one of the killers slices the boy's throat, rendering him permanently mute. Years later, in 1898, a severe blizzard has swept the frontier, bringing privation to the town of Snow Hill. As a result, much of the community is forced to steal in order to survive. Pollicut, seeking to make a profit, places prices on the thieves' heads, attracting the attention of a bounty killer gang led by "Loco" (Klaus Kinski). As they prey on the outlaws, Gordon's son, now going by the moniker "Silence" (Jean-Louis Trintignant), works with the bandits and their allies to fight against the killers. Silence operates on a principle whereby he provokes his enemies into drawing their weapons first so he can kill them in self-defense with his Mauser C96. One of the outlaws, James Middleton, leaves the safety of the group to be with his wife, Pauline (Vonetta McGee). James is subsequently killed by Loco when he takes Pauline hostage. Vengeful, Pauline writes to Silence, requesting him to kill Loco... "The Great Silence" (Italian: Il grande silenzio) is a 1968 revisionist Spaghetti Western film directed and co-written by Sergio Corbucci. Conceived by Corbucci as a politically-charged allegory inspired by the deaths of Che Guevara and Malcolm X, the film's plot takes place in Utah prior to the Great Blizzard of 1899. Distributed in most territories by 20th Century Fox, The Great Silence was theatrically released to a mediocre commercial reception in Italy, but it fared better in other countries. Controversial for its bleak and dark tone, the film's reputation grew, and it gained a cult following in the wake of its release. Having received several theatrical re-releases, most notably in 2012 and 2017, The Great Silence is now widely regarded by fans and authorities on Spaghetti Westerns as one of the greatest films of the genre, and is acknowledged as Corbucci's masterpiece. Praise has gone to the acting, the utilization of snowbound landscapes, Ennio Morricone's score, and the film's subversion of several conventions of the Western film genre. Time Out gave the film a mostly positive review, writing, "While Django remains the erratic Corbucci's best picture, this slightly later spaghetti Western does well by an inventive set-up [...] between the bullets there's engaging stuff from the two stars and an unmistakable chill in the air". Film critic Leonard Maltin praised the film, awarding it 3 1/2 out of a possible 4 stars. In his review he wrote that The Great Silence is a "brutal, bleakly beautiful spaghetti Western filmed on stark locations in the Dolomites, with one of the most uncompromising and unforgettable finales ever filmed". In his analysis of the Spaghetti Western genre, Alex Cox described The Great Silence as Corbucci's "tightest, most relentless Western; his best and his bleakest. It's shot in his trademark messy, over-edited, jerky-zoom style, and its telephoto close-ups are frequently out of focus. Yet it is incredibly beautiful". He voiced praise for Ippoliti's strategy of "shooting through things" (a marked improvement over his work on Navajo Joe), the tight script, the strong female characters and the tragic nature of the ending, rooted in Corbucci's pessimism towards the deaths of radical political leaders. "The Great Silence" is a very wobbly Spaghetti western B-movie in my opinion and not as good/bad as Sergio Corbuccis "Django". I red how this film has become a cult favourite and how subversive it is conceptually which it was for sure in 1968, but not something you would raise an eyebrow for today I would say. It is a dark, eerie, cynical, violent film with a bleak surprise ending. We also get beautiful snowbound landscapes and Ennio Morricone's score. However, we also get wobbly acting, dubbing, strange editing with plotholes and a strange match of the leads in Kinski and Trintignant. But, there are scenes that are intriguing as well and I do like Vonetta McGee. "The Great Silence" is a B-movie as said, but there is something intriguing about it nevertheless.

  • Apr 22, 2019

    Pretty fantastic spaghetti western. Seek this one out.

    Pretty fantastic spaghetti western. Seek this one out.

  • Jan 03, 2019

    I thought that I had reached the zenith of the 'spaghetti Western' genre with the Sergio Leone Dollars Trilogy and Once Upon A Time In The West. However with this Western I was alerted to the brilliance of another great director called Sergio, Sergio Corbucci. I have seen another Corbucci film, Django from 1966 a few years ago. You could call this film the Western in the snow. It certainly was the inspiration for Quentin Tarantino with his The Hateful Eight film. The film is about a man with no voice, never mind no name! No seriously the lead (Jean-Louis Trintignant) had his vocal chords forcibly removed in childhood in a attack on his parents by bounty hunters. It is this memory that drives Silence to have a dislike of Bounty hunter/killers and their methods. This film has plenty of them epitomized by Klaus Kinski as Bounty Hunter Loco. The film has an excellent music score by the legendary Ennio Morricone. The score matches up to any of his other work. The ending of a Western, or any film for that matter usually sees good prevail and justice being made etc...not here. The hero, Silence is gunned down along with several mountain farmer outlaws as Loco escapes with his life. The ending proved so controversial when the film was made in the late 1960s that it never got a widespread release in territories like the U.S. and U.K. despite the film being purchased by studio Twentieth Century Fox. I would go as far as to rate this the greatest western film I have seen, which is a lot!

    I thought that I had reached the zenith of the 'spaghetti Western' genre with the Sergio Leone Dollars Trilogy and Once Upon A Time In The West. However with this Western I was alerted to the brilliance of another great director called Sergio, Sergio Corbucci. I have seen another Corbucci film, Django from 1966 a few years ago. You could call this film the Western in the snow. It certainly was the inspiration for Quentin Tarantino with his The Hateful Eight film. The film is about a man with no voice, never mind no name! No seriously the lead (Jean-Louis Trintignant) had his vocal chords forcibly removed in childhood in a attack on his parents by bounty hunters. It is this memory that drives Silence to have a dislike of Bounty hunter/killers and their methods. This film has plenty of them epitomized by Klaus Kinski as Bounty Hunter Loco. The film has an excellent music score by the legendary Ennio Morricone. The score matches up to any of his other work. The ending of a Western, or any film for that matter usually sees good prevail and justice being made etc...not here. The hero, Silence is gunned down along with several mountain farmer outlaws as Loco escapes with his life. The ending proved so controversial when the film was made in the late 1960s that it never got a widespread release in territories like the U.S. and U.K. despite the film being purchased by studio Twentieth Century Fox. I would go as far as to rate this the greatest western film I have seen, which is a lot!

  • Nov 23, 2018

    O Vingador Silencioso (1968) #MovieReview 4,0 â­?ï¸? Em inverno rigoroso com procurados famintos e caçadores de recompensas, pistoleiro mudo chega à cidadezinha onde viúva o contrata para vingança. Ã"timo filme de Corbucci, com Kinski e Morricone de trilha.

    O Vingador Silencioso (1968) #MovieReview 4,0 â­?ï¸? Em inverno rigoroso com procurados famintos e caçadores de recompensas, pistoleiro mudo chega à cidadezinha onde viúva o contrata para vingança. Ã"timo filme de Corbucci, com Kinski e Morricone de trilha.

  • Jul 20, 2018

    Corbucci's best, and one of the great spaghetti westerns of all time.

    Corbucci's best, and one of the great spaghetti westerns of all time.