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For a Few Dollars More (1965)



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For a Few Dollars More is the middle film in a trilogy about The Man With No Name, the character that made Clint Eastwood famous. These westerns, directed by Sergio Leone, roughened the edges of the genre. While the previous film was an adaptation of Dashiell Hammett's Red Harvest, transposed to a western setting, this one is an original story.

Though the weakest of the trilogy by a nose, it is still an excellent film and contains the single best scene in all of the movies, namely where Eastwood's character (this time called Monco) and another bounty hunter size each other up in the streets. The cinematography and editing in this scene (and many others) is flawless: in a scene with few words, a lot going on inside the characters' heads, and deadly physical and mental competition with surprising turns, the narrative is crystal clear and has great impact.

I mentioned it in my review of A Fistful of Dollars, but I must again mention Ennio Morricone's score, a seminal work that is arguably the most evocative the genre has to offer. It is perhaps a little more self-conscious this time out, but not less effective.

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