Blu-ray Review: Kill Them All and Come Back Alone | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Saturday, September 19th, 2020  

Kill Them All and Come Back Alone

Studio: Kino Lorber Studio Classics

Jan 22, 2020 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

In the heat of the Civil War, a master criminal by the name of Clyde McKay is hired by the Confederates to break into a heavily-fortified enemy hold and steal one million dollars’ worth of enemy gold that the Union Army intends to use to purchase ammunition. He’s brought on a team of skilled mercenaries to help him carry out the mission, who think he’s agreed to split the stolen money with them. To ensure their nefarious plot remains a secret after it’s been carried out, his Confederate employers have issued Clyde one more, secret order: after he’s stolen the gold, he must kill them all and come back alone.

TV’s Chuck Connors (The Rifleman, Cowboy in Africa) stars in this 1968 Spaghetti Western from Italian maestro Enzo Castellari. It’s a movie that’s light on words but heavy on action: from the opening scene, it’s rare that more than a couple minutes go by without fists and bullets flying.

Clyde’s assembled the obligatory badass crew full of clichéd characters, each with their particular set of fighting skills. There’s Bogard (wrestler Hercules Cortez), a gorilla of a strongman; there’s The Kid, an acrobat who leaps into combat via a trampoline always placed strategically out-of-frame; there’s Deker, a gadget man who wields the mid-19th century equivalent of a grenade launcher; Hoagy, the marksman; and Blade, the token half-Indian, half-Mexican who doesn’t use a gun, but is deadly at throwing knives. These characters are given ample opportunity to show off their skills through the movie’s non-stop heists, raids, escapes, and bar brawls. It was impossible to keep count, but this small crew had to have been responsible for killing at least one hundred soldiers who had the bad luck of guarding gold and armaments on the wrong day.

Along the way they’re accompanied by Captain Lynch, one of the two Confederates who hired them, and who never seems on the level. When they’re not shooting, punching, or dynamiting their way into hostile camps, one character or another is being betrayed. This is a movie so packed with double-crosses that even the habitual double-crossers get double-crossed. Between the surprising backstabs and the never-ending shots of stunt men jumping off roofs and away from explosions, Kill Them All and Come Back Alone is never, ever boring. (If Iko Uwais jumped in a time machine and starred in a Spaghetti Western, it probably would have been a lot like this one.) For fans of cowboy imports, it’s almost impossible not to have fun watching this movie.

Kino Lorber’s Blu-ray features a new, 4K restoration of the film, which does justice to the movie’s panoramic, desert vistas and jarring zooms into the actors’ eyes. Also featured is a commentary by filmmaker and fan Alex Cox, director of Repo Man and Straight to Hell.



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