Sergio Leone: Once Upon a Time in Italy, Paperback Book

Sergio Leone: Once Upon a Time in Italy Paperback

5 out of 5 (1 rating)


In the mid-1960s, an unknown Italian film director, Sergio Leone, made A Fistful of Dollars, the first in a trilogy of films that came to define the 'spaghetti western'.

The films that complete the trilogy, For a Few Dollars More and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, are, like the first film, violent, cynical and visually stunning, and together they form the backbone of an important film genre that has influenced many contemporary filmmakers.

This book, newly available in paperback, is an authoritative, in-depth study of Leone and the ItalianWestern by film expert and cultural historian Sir Christopher Frayling.

Featuring analyses of and interviews with all the key players, including Leone himself, it forms a wonderful tribute to one of the master filmmakers of the 20th century.




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Sir Christopher Frayling has written an excellent, definitive and hugely enjoyable biography of Sergio Leone and his “spaghetti westerns”. The book is meticulously researched and interviews key participants in the Leone story, including Ennio Morricone, Clint Eastwood, Claudia Cardinale, Carlo Simi, Tonini Delli Colli and Sergio Donati amongst others. Frayling is generous to Leone, celebrating his achievements without resorting to hagiography. Perhaps the biggest strength of the book, however, is the analysis of Leone’s films, with each western given its own critical and thoughtful overview. The book contains page-after-page of excellent full-colour photographs and many reproductions of the original posters from the various different territories. If there is one criticism to be made, it is that Frayling gets bogged down in minor, superfluous detail on occasion. That is a minor quibble, however, in regard to a book that is an excellent and definitive film biography and a worthy tribute to a great filmmaker.

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