I figure there are three tracts I can take with this one:
1. Write a legitimate review
2. Compare my observations of the movie to those of the bottle of wine I put back while
3. Do a cheap recap exploiting the title of the movie
As option one would be unnecessarily serious (again) and two is funnier in concept then in execution, we’re going with three.
The Ugly is Mexican, a criminal, and not nearly as ugly as the name would purport. The Bad is a hired gun who finishes the job come hell or high water. The Good is squinty-eyed, ponchoed, and all thing considered, not really so good. All three are supernaturally good gunfighters.
The Ugly and The Good are sort of old friends. Their long running scheme is for The Good to turn in The Ugly to the local authorities of various towns, collect the price on his head, then save him from a well-deserved hanging and split the reward. After a long successful run, The Good—for no particular reason—decides to totally screw over the The Ugly, stranding him out in the desert with no food or water eighty miles from town.
Elsewhere, The Bad shows up to the door of a man he’s been hired to kill. He’s looking for a name, and after some menacing soup-eating, he eventually gets it. The mark then offers to double the money that The Bad has already been paid if only he’ll turn around and kill the one who hired him. The Bad ends up killing the mark, taking his money, and then killing the guy who hired him—because it’s all about honour, apparently. In the aftermath, he’s left with his blood money, a few less bullets, and the name of a soldier that will lead him to a huge cache of Confederate gold.
The Ugly tracks down The Good (who wasn’t hiding too hard considering the circumstances), and drags him out of the town for some eye-for-an-eye revenge. Out in the desert, the two come across a carriage filled with shot-up soldiers, one of which is the guy—the one the Ugly is searching for. The soldier manages to death rattle the location of his Confederate loot, which is buried in a cemetery, but The Ugly only manages to hear the cemetery’s name, while The Good gets just the grave name. They’re forced into an unwanted partnership once more.
On the way to the gold, they run afoul of soldiers on both sides of the war at one point or another. They also fall into the clutches of The Bad, after The Ugly goes parading around under the dead soldier’s name. Other stuff happens. They blow up a bridge, and some more guys get shot, and they all evade one another, but in the end the three face off at the grave of an unknown soldier for the prize of two-hundred thousand dollars. And some people die, and some don’t, and there’s more betrayal, and then it finally ends.
Sorry, got lazy there, but somewhere during the three goddamn hours of this movie, I suddenly remembered that I don’t like westerns very much. I can understand how someone could be passionate about it—I just couldn’t give a crap. It’s not you, poorly dubbed Italian movie, it’s me.
My Mom’s cousin Ed would have liked it; he was mad for the westerns. Of course, he also liked to drink until his feet swelled up and he couldn’t get his cowboy boots off, but that’s a story for another time. A more interesting one.