Five Bloody Graves (1970)
Dix Rides With the Devil
When Ben Thompson (Robert Dix - Forty Guns) learns that Native American Setago (John 'Bud' Cardos) and his renegade apaches are attacking anyone they find in the territory Ben decides he has to stop him and protect the innocent. It eventually leads him to a stagecoach where a group of showgirls are travelling with a preacher who needs his help.
After the shocking credits "Five Bloody Graves" starts in a poor but okay way as we see Ben Thompson riding across the country. Yes the image quality is poor but it is no worse than countless westerns from over the years and you begin to wonder why, if you look on a prominent movie website, it is rated so poorly. And then you find out why as we are presented firstly with the really poor camera work where Ben's head floats at the bottom of the screen. Yes "Five Bloody Graves" is full of shocking camera work and that is accompanied by terrible editing which makes fight scenes hilariously bad as they end up clunky.
On the subject of what is bad there is also the acting and the script as this is full of diabolical dialogue delivered in a disgracefully bad manner. If the concept was for the pregnant pauses to create atmosphere it failed and only made it feel like the actors had no idea of their lines. It isn't even entertaining in a bad way and you begin to wonder why any actor would agree to appear in something which is this bad especially actors with the pedigree of John Carradine.
The one thing which is just about okay when it comes to "Five Bloody Graves" is the basic storyline as the tale of a cowboy trying to protect the innocent from a warring Native American is a western standard. Plus we have a quirky added element as we have a narration from, wait for it, death. Yes we listen to death telling us how everyone has their day and how he rides next to those who live a deadly life. In the end the narration is pointless but at least the idea is different.
What this all boils down to is that "Five Bloody Graves" is shockingly poor, so poor that even if you are not a movie fan you will make a note of the name Al Adamson and avoid his movies in the future. But there is one other thing and British movie fans will suddenly find themselves sitting up and thinking what as the music which ITV used for the evening news appears in this movies soundtrack.
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