Spaghetti Westerns experienced their heyday in the 1960s and 70s in style. The term originated because most of the Westerns from that era were filmed in Italian studios and featured some of the same directors and actors. So how do these films differ from their American counterparts? The story is darker, the action is bloodier, and everyone is out for revenge.
The conversation goes on in r/movies about the best unstarred Spaghetti Westerns Clint Eastwood. Many users chimed in with their own personal favorites. From a lone avenger to a band of mercenaries, from desert landscapes to wartime heroes, these are Redditors’ top picks.
10 ‘They Call Me Trinity’ (1970)
They Call Me Trinity is a western comedy directed by Enzo Barboni. It tells the story of two goofy cowboys (played hilariously by Terence Hill And Bud Spencer) who comes to the rescue of the Mormon settlement when land grabbers cause trouble. This film strikes the perfect balance between action and laughs.
The people on Reddit added They Call Me Trinity to their list of top spaghetti westerns that didn’t star Eastwood. User powerage76 said of the film, “The Old Spencer/Terence Hill Westerns is absolutely delightful.” Another user, mephistophles2u agreed, writing, “Yup – awesome stuff.”
9 ‘My Name Is Nobody’ (19713)
My name is Nobody is a combination of classic and western spaghetti. It’s about a shooter (played by Hill) named Nobody idolizes a famous shooter (Henry Fonda) who is about to retire, but she convinces him to have one last battle with the notorious villain. This one has plenty of gun throwing action for the fans.
User DrDejuvu joked, saying although the movie is mostly terrible, “There’s my favorite scene in every way. The big one with The Wild Bunch, trains, and dynamite. That whole sequence is awesome. Best 15 minutes of any movie, in my opinion , but the rest ranged from bad to ok to just plain weird.” In other words, expect a fun romp.
8 ‘Keoma’ (1976)
Keoma is directed by Enzo G. Castelerri (man behind Homeland Soldier And Escape From The Bronx). It follows a Union shooter who tries to protect his hometown from Confederate leaders. It’s very artsy but has all the violence fans would expect from a ’70s spaghetti western.
User 2xtimes suggested the film on Reddit, writing, “F**king trippy movie, weird but still awesome. Franco Nero and underrated Woody Strode work together to take back the broken city.” Keoma is a unique viewing experience and should be added to everyone’s watch list.
7 ‘Death on a Horse’ (1967)
Looking for a good Western, even without Eastwood? Look no further than Death Riding a Horse. Directed by Giulio Petroni, This film stars classic actorsLee Van Cleef And John Phillip Law. It follows the story of a young gunman and a former criminal who team up to kill bandits, each in the name of revenge.
If the plot sounds familiar, it’s because it’s similar to a Quentin Tarantino movies (he is very much inspired by movies). IAmRobertShaw wrote, “I love it death Riding A Horse, and if you are familiar with Kill Bill then it should be an attractive watch.”Part buddy movie and part revenge saga, this one is a wild ride. It is considered one of the best Spaghetti Westerns of all time.
6 ‘The Mercenary’ (1969)
Mercenaries is a Mexican Revolutionary Western film directed by Sergio Corbucci (whose name often comes up when talking about Western spaghetti). It follows a mercenary (played by Nero) who leads a revolution with a peasant girl (played by Nero).Giovanna Ralli) and a miner to thwart the Mexican government.
The film features many tropes specific to the genre (a seedy desert town with despicable criminals). Reddit user 2xtime says about Mercenaries“Franco Nero is the #3 biggest Spaghetti Western star behind Clint Eastwood and Lee Van Kleef, and right in front of Terence Hill. Great movie withJack Palance as the incredible villain.”
5 ‘The Great Silence’ (1968)
Corbucci is back together great Silence, a film about a silent gunman who protects a widow from a band of outlaws and bounty hunters. It features an impressive cast including Jean-Louis Trintigant, Klaus Kinski, And Frank Wolff. This one is just as bloody and graphic as the Spaghetti Western.
User wiNNa_monstER took to Reddit to add this one to the list. Redditor blucthulhu agreed, “It’s and For A Few More Dollars is my favorite spaghetti western. Knock Heaven’s Gate blow over a decade and the ending was just brutal. Never seen anything like it,” they wrote.
4 ‘Navajo Joe’ (1966)
Burt Reynolds made a name for himself in the genre when he played Quint Asper on the television series Gun smoke. This naturally led him to the big screen where he starred in Spaghetti WesternNavajo Joes. He played a Native American (Reynolds claims Cherokee descent) who avenges the criminals who slaughtered his tribe.
Directed by Corbucii, the film caught the attention of 2x Redditors who said “Burt Reynolds is a Native American looking for revenge. Great Ennio Morricone score.” Navajo Joes it’s generally been roasted by critics for years for various reasons, but some Reddit users are clearly enjoying it.
3 ‘Army of 5’ (1969)
5 Man Army is another Spaghetti Western without Eastwood that Redditors love. Directed by Don Taylorr and Dario Argentinait features a fantastic ensemble cast including Bud Spencer, Peter’s TombAnd James Daly. This is a fast-paced train heist movie with enough twists and turns to keep your attention.
User 2xtimes said of the film, “Peter Graves (think pilot of Aircraft!) teams up with brutes, gamblers, samurai, and explosives experts to rob a heavily armed train. Underrated and relatively unknown, it’s still very entertaining. There’s a great scene of the samurai chasing the chariot.”
2 ‘Django’ (1966)
When it comes to Spaghetti Westerns, Django is a film that stands out from the crowd. Corbucci did it before Tarantino (who wrote and directed modern films Django Unchained). The film centers around a gunsmith and a prostitute who seek revenge on a group of Confederate Red Shirts and Mexican Revolutionaries.
User drnotorious said on Reddit, “The real thing Django (1966) is popular and worth checking out.” Here’s a fun fact: Nero (who played the original Django) appeared in Django Unchained. The original version was far ahead of its time and would be perfect for first viewing in a Django double feature.
1 ‘Once upon a time in the West’ (1968)
Leone’s Once upon a time in the west is in a class of its own, one of the essential Spaghetti Westerns. Starring Henry Fonda, Charles Bronsons, And Claudia Cardinale and about a stranger with a harmonica and a reckless guy teaming up to protect a widow. It also features another excellent score by Ennio Morricone.
Reddit user OkDokeComputer wrote of the film, “Absolutely and without question One Once Upon A Time In The West. That’s also Sergio Leone but not Eastwood. Such an epic film.” User Bennett1984 agreed, saying, “Without a doubt. Best. Period. In my opinion.” This is a must-watch for fans of the genre.
NEXT: Each Sergio Leone Film Is Ranked From Worst To Best