Requiescant (1967) (Blu-ray/DVD Review)

Requiescant (1967) (Blu-ray/DVD Review)

Requiescant (1967) (Blu-ray/DVD Review)

📅11 November 2015, 19:06

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Requiescant (1967) (Blu-ray/DVD Review)
Directed By: Carlo Lizzani
Starring: Lucio Battistrada, Andrew Baxter
Rated: UR/Region A/1:85/1080p/Number of Discs 2
Available from Arrow Video

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KILL AND PRAY! Directed by Carlo Lizzani (Wake Up and Kill, The Hills Run Red) and with a superb soundtrack by Riz Ortolani (Day of Anger, Cannibal Holocaust), Requiescant – Latin for ‘Rest in Peace’ – ranks among the finest Spaghetti Westerns. Alex Cox named it the “one film to prove that the Italian Western was not solely Sergio Leone’s”. Lou Castel (Fists in the Pocket, A Bullet for General) plays a young man who was raised to be a pacifist by a travelling preacher after Confederates massacred his family. But when his step-sister runs away, the pursuit reveals a natural talent as a sharp-shooter as well as a bloody and unexpected confrontation with his past. Joining Castel are an impressive array of performers, including Mark Damon (Black Sabbath, The Fall of the House of Usher) as the sadistic aristocratic villain, Franco Citti (Accattone, The Godfather) as his henchman, and the great Italian filmmaker Pier Paolo Pasolini (Salò) in a rare acting role as a revolutionary priest.

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As the year keeps tossing classic Spaghetti Westerns at my direction, I keep finding more and more reason to really enjoy them and Requiescant is another good reason. I do, however, feel that Requiescant is a very good film that would have been a great film had it not been for the direction the last twenty or so minutes take. Let me get to that part slowly, but I’ll say everything leading up to that part of the film has all the makings of a classic. The movie opens with what you could call one of the biggest set-ups in film history. From that chaos a kid manages to walk away and he is raised by a religious family as if he is their own. Once grown, his adopted (of sorts) sister leaves and he goes out to find her, learning early along the way that he is really good with a gun. What she has gotten herself into leads to nothing but trouble for our new sharp shooter with the best of intentions here and as luck would have it, things all come around to connect. This whole portion of the film is GREAT and as enjoyable as any Western I’ve ever seen. The plot it set, you could add in the revenge portion as another great set-up for the film, but things get a little twisted at the end and that is where the film does fall off just a bit.

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I won’t dare to spoil anything, but the movie goes from a pretty straight forward revenge plot and gets all sorts of caught up in a bigger conflict. I didn’t enjoy this portion of the movie as much and that is sad because that leads us to our finale. It doesn’t at all make the movie a bad movie or ruin the film in general, but it does take the movie from a top-tier classic to just a good movie and I hated to see that happen. Still our leading man plays a character very worthy of more films and more stories about him. The movie holds things together enough and you can’t go wrong with the interest some of the characters and cinematography of the film brings. For you transfer fans out there, the movie looks good. We do have a few moments of film damages that almost looks as if its raining in the picture, but those scenes are few and far, also short. Outside of that, it is smooth sailing for the transfer and I still think the movie is very good and worthy of you guys checking it out. I think most of you will be very happy you do, if you are a fan of Spaghetti Westerns.

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Extras

– Brand new 2K restoration of the film from the original camera negative
– High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentations
– Optional English and Italian soundtracks in uncompressed PCM mono audio
– Newly translated English subtitles for the Italian soundtrack
– Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing for the English soundtrack
– An all-new interview with Lou Castel, recorded exclusively for this release
– Archive interview with director Carlo Lizzani
– Theatrical Trailer
– Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Gilles Vranckx
– Illustrated collector’s booklet containing new writing on the film by Pasquale Iannone

Quality of Transfer: 88%

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