Duck, You Sucker at the Dryden

I headed out to the Dryden Theater at George Eastman House (900 East Ave.) to see Giù la testa (A Fistful of Dynamite, or Duck, You Sucker). According to Michael Neault in his introduction of the movie, Sergio Leone — after having made several movies celebrating political revolution — Duck, You Sucker takes a much more cynical view of it.  It also happens to be that there are no fewer than four versions of the film, and the one we got to see was presumed to be the "original" director's cut.

I immediate thought that as much as The Bridge on the River Kwai is a testament to the rational insanity of war, Duck, You Sucker shows war as a black comedy. In the film, John — a former Irish Republican Army explosives expert — gets paired up with Juan — a poor thief in Mexico. That is, despite John's best efforts to avoid it. And to avoid getting roped into another revolution … sort of … it seems that getting involved in revolution is more of an addictive habit than anything. Juan, in the mean time, is also trying to avoid getting into the revolution. But he accidentally keeps saving people and making terriffic progress for the revolutionaries.

As revolutions are, there are advances made by each side, making it seem like no progress is made on either front overall until perhaps, one of the parties involved just gets too tired of fighting — or forgets what the point was in the first place.

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