Don’t Wait Django… Shoot! (1967)

Don’t Wait Django… Shoot! (1967)

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"You're not Franco Nero, are you?"
“You’re not Franco Nero, are you?”

Twitter Plot Summary: Django, played by someone else entirely, seeks revenge for the death of his father. And nothing happens.

One of a huge number of unofficial Django movies, Don’t Wait Django… Shoot! marks one of 9 films starring the character that were released in 1967 alone – and the original had only been released the year before. Franco Nero wouldn’t return to the role until 1987 in the only official sequel, so here Django is played by Ivan Rassimov (or Sean Todd as he was known here), complete with stubbled chin and black leather outfit.

Here, he seeks revenge on the bandidos who killed his father, murdered on the road for the money he was carrying. That’s about it as far as plot goes, Django gets on the bad guy’s trail while the bad guy and his minions look a bit sinister and randomly kill folks. Otherwise, there’s very little that happens. It’s almost as if the script has had all the fun bits taken out of it for reasons of budget and/or logic. Even the gunfights are boring, mostly because Django is such an awesome gunslinger that it’s rare that they last more than a few seconds. Who’d have thought it could be possible?

Almost as if to make the character appear legitimate, everyone but Django himself seems keen to drop his name into every sentence. It’s only one step away from him referring to himself in the third person. That wouldn’t be so bad because then at least Rassimov may have had a bit more to do other than look like a third tier Clint Eastwood. As it is, his Django is barely recognisable when compared against Franco Nero, and barely warrants a mention even in the context of the film he’s supposedly starring in. Worse still is the villain barely registers, which for a Western seems almost unforgiveable. The problem is that he is introduced far too late into the narrative and it’s down to Django’s various faceoffs with a number of underlings to carry the story – fine on paper but on screen it’s deathly dull.

Even the horse was dubious about his "Django" qualifications.
Even the horse was dubious about his “Django” qualifications.

It’s almost amusing how many spaghetti western tropes get thrown into the production – the crazed, near psychotic villain, the ponchos, the quest for gold, the violent deaths, the occasionally bare chested cowboys, the busty women needing rescuing from those aforementioned poncho wearing chaps… it bears all the hallmarks of a film being made in the hands of those who are not entirely aware of what makes a good cowboy film. Six men all falling to the ground in unison, having been shot, is practically laughable in its execution. Many of the death scenes are, frankly, amusingly over-acted and of course completely lacking in blood. This formula is repeated time and again, quickly becoming repetitive and leaving you wondering if there is genuinely any point in watching.

Thus, Don’t Wait Django… Shoot! is nothing more than what it was always intended to be – a cheap knock-off of the character in order to make a bit of money out of his name. Such is its adherence to Western cliche that it makes you wish you were watching a Sergio Leone Western just because he knew what he was doing. That and you may very well have been genuinely entertained.

Score: 1.5/5

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