Sergio Leone: The Way I See Things (2006)

Western towns controlled by outlaws. Cigar-chewing heroes in looming close-ups. Operatic showdowns. Throbbing music. Movie buffs know the trademark elements of the great Italian filmmaker, Sergio Leone, by heart, but the engaging documentary Sergio Leone: The Way I See Things will surely give even the most ardent fan new insights into this unique master. The maestro behind such genre epics as A Fistful of Dollars, The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly and Once Upon a Time in the West, Leone (1929-1989) was a superb stylist who took the American Westerns he loved as a kid and transformed them into visual arias all of his own, in the process influencing such directors as Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez. Just as fascinating as his films, Leone’s larger-than-life personality is profiled here in an illuminating journey, rich in both anecdotes and gorgeous clips from his movies.

By examining Leone’s superb use of image, sound and the frame, the film reveals the magic and the rough beauty of his arid vistas and outsized characters. Actors Eli Wallach and Claudia Cardinale, directors Giuliano Montaldo and Vittorio Giacci and historian Christopher Frayling, among others, offer invaluable contributions to Giulio Reale’s exhilarating ‘Sergio Leone: The Way I See I Things,’ a mesmerizing portrait that makes us look at an old master with fresh eyes. —Fernando F. Croce


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