Aka Red Footsteps
Reviewed By-Paul Cooke Directed by: Andrea Girolami
Andrea Girolami realises a boyhood scenario of the old west as he has grown into the boots worn with a perfect fit by his father Enzo G. Castellari. The Italian movie industry throughout the Sixties and into the Seventies sat tall in the saddle of the Western , and from one end to the other of the dust encrusted towns came the long stare downs of gun slingers. Its been too long since the term Spaghetti Western notched another title upon the genre belt , so who better than a Girolami to step up for a shoot in the right direction !?.
The title ‘Orme Rosse’ is chosen with reverence to the mighty John Ford and his classic ‘Stagecoach’ , it’s Italian translated title being ‘Ombre Rosse’ , who’s literal English meaning is Red Shadows. The lineage then is etched in tradition with respectful dues , and as ‘Orme Rosse’ begins the eye is drawn with memorable evocation to the stylised opening of Enzo G. Castellari’s own classic ‘Keoma’.
A lone stranger rides into a typical western town , breeze swept dust encircles his ride wearied horse and the town sign whistles its creaky tune upon the wind. A sense of watchful eyes envelope the viewer as if burning into the strangers very soul and the old schooled musical score hit’s the notes with a recognisable twang of complimenting guitar. The sweeping camera style is gracefully in place and well attuned to the Foley artists applications , low shot pans accompanying dust drawn boots as they pace the sidewalk boards and tread the steps to a pawn brokers store. The taste and feel of being at a double bill with Sergio Leone’s ‘Once Upon A Time In The West’ comes to mind and all the flavour of what was great about the genre freely floods welcomingly right on into the memory bank , and fits well like Robert Vaughn’s black clad glove from ‘The Magnificent Seven’.
This mysterious stranger has come to collect a set of shinning spurs but once acquired he attracts the attentions of others out to possess the pieces. Holding onto these prized accoutrements calls for the need to showcase the often overlooked skill of the stunt man. It is here that Director Andrea Girolami gets to fully tell his tale as the expression of the fall guy takes centre stage , with fisticuffs and a barn loft fall packing respective punches like prize fighters inciting a crowd. A well visualised throw back delight that has a cookie jar treat in its saddle bag for a stand out moment , a P.O.V hand gun shooting a bullet that its audience gets to follow close on right up to the blood squib impact.
Complimented by a tip top tempo musical score from Francesco De Masi the Spaghetti Western theme enhances what is a very accomplished short movie endeavour from Andrea. There are no stars and the players faces are barely seen. The lead stranger leaves open a personal identification that many may see fit to recognise with Franco Nero and that would indeed be most fitting. The true stars of ‘Orme Rosse’ are the unaccredited stunt men who have applied their trade passionately for generations. Andrea has reawakened the spirit and flair of the Spaghetti Western and encapsulated its generic greatness in eight wonderful minutes of pure charm. May his shadow soon stretch further to a full feature , enabling him to come out with all guns a blazing. The Spaghetti Western needs a new son and Andrea is the son of a great gun.
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