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Bring me the head of Alfredo Garcia

Bring me the head of Alfredo Garcia – 1974
Sam Peckinpah

Frank Kowalski
Sam Peckinpah

Warren Oates
Isela Vega
Robert Webber
Kris Kristofferson

Review by Wayne Malin

Pretty bad,
How this has such a high rating is beyond me. This film has been blasted by critics (and audiences) for years. Heck, it’s even in the book “The Fifty Worst Films of All Time”! Maybe it’s not that bad but it’s certainly not good.

In Mexico a powerful man named El Jefe orders his hired killers to “bring me the head of Alfredo Garcia”. It seems Garcia had sex with his daughter and she’s now pregnant. Two gay (implied) assassins (played by Robert Webber and Gig Young) from Jefe hire a down and out piano player in a bar (Warren Oates) to do the job. He drags along his girlfriend Elita (Isela Vega) who also happens to be a prostitute.

The film starts out OK–the acting is good (especially by Webber and Vega), there’s a few nicely directed bits and some fairly good dialogue. But when Oates and Vega go out to do the job the film slowly falls apart. It slows down quickly, the dialogue gets silly and there’s a pointless and disgusting scene where Vega is almost raped by a biker (Kris Kristofferson!!). The last hour is almost unbearable–the film slows down even more, it gets quickly VERY dull and director Peckinpah’s slow-motion shootouts get boring. The movie somehow manages to become bloody, sadistic AND dull! All in all this is pretty lousy. A tasteless, pointless and pretty sick story with gratuitous female nudity, dull violence and a snails pace. The 3 I give it is mostly for the acting. You can skip this one.

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