Maria seeks revenge on the killers of her husband. She enlists the help of her husband's best friend, Manual, a reluctant, but skilled, gunfighter.
The Black Glove Man. Une corde, un Colt (AKA: Cemetery Without Crosses) is directed by Robert Hossein, who also stars and co-writes the screenplay with Dario Argento and Claude Desailly. Starring alongside Hossein are Michèle Mercier, Anne-Marie Balin, Daniele Vargas, Guido Lollobrigida and Serge Marquand. Music is by Andre Hossein and cinematography by Henri Persin. After being forced to watch the lynching of her husband by the ruthless Rogers family, Maria Caine (Mercier) asks her inept brothers-in-law for help in retribution. Getting no joy from the pair, she seeks outside help in the form of fast gun Manuel (Hossein), a loner living in solitude out at a ghost town... It's dedicated to Sergio Leone, who directs one of the best scenes in the film, contains the Argento factor, so it's not really a shock to proclaim that Leone's influence is all over Hossein's movie. It's a Pasta Western that operates in the void between the real and the spirit world, deliberately ethereal in tone, even sprinkling dashes of the surreal onto the hearty portion. Dialogue is used sparingly, but not to the detriment of films quality, and Hossein the director dallies in black and white staging, slow zooms and excellent usage of sound effects. Much like the dialogue, the violence is pared down, there's no Blunderbuss infused blood laden approach to the evil that men do here, it's all very controlled and in keeping with the tonal flows that Hossein favours. The cliché's of the sub-genre are adhered to throughout, thankfully so, while the finale is suitably melancholic. Thoughtful, sombre and ripe with blurry ambiguity, Cemetery Without Crosses is comfortably recommended to the Euro Western fan. 8/10
***Moody, serious, proficient but flat Spaghetti Western by Robert Hossein*** An ex-gunfighter living in a ghost town in the Southwest (Robert Hossein) decides to assist the wife (Michèle Mercier) of a friend that was unjustly lynched by the rough ruling family of the area, the Rogers. “Cemetery without Crosses” (1969) is a Euro Western (French / Italian / Spanish) originally titled “A Rope… a Colt…” (translated). Director/writer/star Robert Hossein was admittedly inspired by Sergio Leone and you can see the influence of “For a Few Dollars More” (1965). Speaking of which, one of the best scenes in the movie, the amusing dinner sequence at the Rogers’ ranch, was guest-directed by Sergio Leone. This is a competent Spaghetti Western with a quality score, the usual Spanish locations and a good cast with three beautiful women (Mercier, Anne-Marie Balin & Béatrice Altariba). I like the serious tone, the ambiance and attractive cinematography, but it’s too flat of an experience, disregarding the dinner scene. Simply put, it becomes one-dimensional and tedious as it moves along. “The Hellbenders,” aka “The Cruel Ones” (1967), was less proficient, but at least it entertained. “Doc” (1971) is a good comparison, but it had a superior cast and way more perks. Even “Navajo Joe” (1966) is more memorable IMHO. But if you like Euro Westerns give it a try. Some cinephiles rave about it. The film runs 1 hour, 30 minutes, and was shot in Almería, Andalucía, Spain. GRADE: C+/B-