Welcome to theBad.net Lee Van Cleef Blog! Here you will find information, photos, videos, and some of my opinions of the badman himself.

Many thanks to the wonderful members of theBad.net Lee Van Cleef Web Board for their contributions and continued enthusiasm!

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Return to Sad Hill


My recent trip to Spain, also marked my return trip to the filming location of finale of The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly commonly known as Sad Hill, the fictitious cemetery from the film.  My first trip in 2013, and was well documented here, here, and here.  At that time Sad Hill was mostly forgotten and grown over, with only a sign to mark it's location and two freshly erected grave markers put up by what would become The Sad Hill Cultural Association.

Now four years later, a lot has changed!

Through passion and crowdfunding, the Association has restored the cemetery to it's 1966 glory!  The original stone circle has been unearthed, and at least a thousand grave markers have been placed back on the original mounds.  Parts that had become overgrown have been cleared, and great details have been added such as the stone grave marker Tuco lands on after the cannon blast, the hanging tree above the unknown grave, and the empty grave Angel Eyes falls into.

The restoration of this location is also the subject of the forthcoming documentary Sad Hill Unearthed.

The location is beyond amazing, and was a true labor of love for all those involved.  I have been in contact with Sad Hill Cultural Association member Sergio Garcia since directly after my first visit, and was honored to finally meet him at the location he has worked so tirelessly at, to make his dream a reality.


Myself and Sergio at the spot where LVC stood during the duel


Recreating an iconic shot


Comparison with stone circle



Below are some additional photos.  Click to enlarge!

a group of tourists look over the Angel Eyes "grave"











Finally for comparison here is a wide shot of 2013 vs 2017





Saturday, December 2, 2017

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Day of Anger 50th Anniversary Blu-Ray Announced (Germany)



Coming to blu-ray on 2/2/2018 in Germany is the 50th anniversary edition of Day of Anger.  While the US received a spectacular release in 2015, this will be the first European blu-ray release of the film, and the first German language blu-ray.

Extras look to be the same as the US disc, so no need to upgrade if you already have it.


Specifications:

  • Speech / Sound: German DTS-HD (mono), Italian PCM (mono), English PCM (mono) 
  • Picture format: 2.35: 1 (1080p) 
  • Subtitles: German, English 
  • Running time: 114 min.


Extras:

  • Extensive booklet 
  • Interviews with director Tonino Valerii, scriptwriter Ernesto Gastaldi, film critic Roberto Curti
  • Deleted Scene 
  • German movie trailer


Saturday, November 18, 2017

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Blu-ray Review: Death Rides a Horse (US)


Released in November of 2017 in the US by Kino Lorber, who also have released also Sabata, Barquero, Return of Sabata, Captain Apache, Bad Man's River, and most recently the 50th Anniversary The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly.  This marks the first instance of Death Rides a Horse on Blu-ray in the United States.

While this review is to discuss the merits of the blu-ray and not the actual film itself, I will say that this is a great film featuring LVC in his Spaghetti Western prime.

The blu-ray itself comes in a standard case with some great artwork as seen on the original movie poster.  This is a one disc release.

Video

The majority of the transfer for Death Rides a Horse appears to be the same as the HD transfer supplied to Explosive Media by MGM.  However as many of you are aware, the Explosive Media release featured a significant framing issue the impacts the last 8 minutes of the film.  The entire end sequence was considerably zoomed in on this Blu-ray.  More information on that here.

However, that framing issue has been corrected in the Kino release!  See comparisons below-




This is a very good looking transfer, by no means reference, but the image is sharp with the proper colors represented.  No major print damage.  There is a fairly high level of film grain, especially in the darker scenes.






Audio

The film itself has never in my opinion sounded that great.  Ennio Morricone's great score has always sounded muffled, and nothing like the glorious stereo original score recordings soundtrack fans are used to.  Dialog is very clear.  No major issues.  Audio is available in English and Italian.

Extras

Kino has gotten film director Alex Cox to give a spirited commentary of the film.  Mr. Cox is well versed in all things spaghetti western, and even has a nice recollection of meeting LVC in 1977 to discuss the screenplay LVC was working on.  A very good listen!

The remaining extras are a vast array of western trailers, all released by Kino, many LVC titles included.

In Conclusion

While the Explosive Media version from Germany offers some additional extra features, the proper framing of this US Kino release makes it the definitive version available on home video!  Highly recommended!


Saturday, November 4, 2017

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Where are the LVC Euro-Crime Movies?

While much of LVC's work in the 1970's was that of the (fading) spaghetti western, he did make a handful of European Crime genre films.  These films are increasingly hard to find today, which is a shame.

First let's take a look at which films I am talking about.  Click on the links to learn a bit more about each film. 


Some may also lump The Squeeze in with these, but as it was shot mostly in New York, I don't count it.

We are now ready to move onto availability of these films.

Mean Frank and Crazy Tony

Mean Frank and Crazy Tony was released on VHS in the mid-80's as part of Sybil Dannings Adventures Video line (which also include The Killing Machine). 

The film a a cheesy introduction by the scantly clad Sybil Danning who also shows up after the movie is over.

As far as I know this is the only way to get the complete version of the film.  Copies come up from time to time on eBay.  There is one on Amazon marketplace right now for $25.00. 



The film is also available on DVD in a highly cut version called Escape From Death Row.  This originally released in the early 1980's no-doubt to cash in on the success of Escape from New York. 

This version clocks in at 76 minutes, which cuts out over 20 minutes of footage. 

I know the $1 price you can find it for is appealing, but do yourself a favor and avoid the cut version at all costs!



I know there are bootleg sources where you can find Mean Frank and Crazy Tony on DVD, but I have not sourced one yet.



The Perfect Killer

This one seems to be the hardest to get.  I can find no trace of it on DVD (despite one 9 film LVC DVD megaset claiming to have it, I ended up with two episodes of The Master instead).




This film was released on VHS under it's original title as well as The Satanic Mechanic (no idea where that title came from!)

  



The Hard Way

Finally a legitimate DVD release! (in the UK anyway). 

This was released in 2009, and the DVD includes a trailer and stills.  It's doubtful this will see a US release so you might as well get the UK version (and hack your DVD player if you are in the US)

You can get it from Amazon here
The Hard Way (1979) [PAL Region 2 Import]





Happy hunting!

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Bad Man's River - Candid and Rare Photos

Never seen these before!  Click to enlarge!

 

 

 
 
 

 

 
 
 
 
 

Saturday, October 14, 2017