Terence Hill in Man of the East (1972)

An Englishman Goes Up the Hill and Comes Down a Cowboy

After his father died the posh Sir Thomas Fitzpatrick Phillip Moore (Terence Hill) heads to the Wild West as his father's dying wish was for him to become a real man. It is there that he meets his 3 teachers; Bull Schmidt (Gregory Walcott), Holy Joe (Harry Carey Jr.) and Monkey (Dominic Barto) who quickly set about trying to convert Tom to the way of the Wild West rather than bicycle riding and butterfly catching but with little success. But Tom finds himself in a pickle when he gets friendly with Candida Olsen (Yanti Somer) as it makes him the target of jealous gunman Morton Clayton (Riccardo Pizzuti) whilst her father is unhappy having a prissy Englishman sniffing around his daughter.

Well when it comes to comedy westerns "Man of the East" is a bit of a surprise as whilst utterly ridiculous it surprisingly enjoyable. How ridiculous you may ask? Well how about an Englishman in tweed, including a tweed deerstalker cycling in to a western town whilst his 3 dust covered mentors ride in behind him on their horse. Nope, that not daft enough, well how about that same young man doing yoga and leaping around like a frog in his long johns. I could go on because "Man of the East" is filled with comedy and not just from Terence Hill as a fish out water Englishman as the trio of Bull, Joe and Monkey are an equally enjoyable comedy act.

Dominic Barto, Harry Carey Jr. and Gregory Walcott in Man of the East (1972)

But here is the thing about "Man of the East", the humour is of the old school, visual variety and as such when Thomas ends up in a barroom brawl of course he takes the stance of a typical boxer. In fairness it is not all humour which feels like it has been recycled from a silent movie as there are a lot of other gags such as Bull and Monkey not being able to read but none of it is that original and is a case that pretty much everything in this spaghetti western comes across like you have seen it before.

Now the credit for "Man of the East" being so entertaining is Terence Hill whose gift for over the top visual reactions is what makes the movie. In fact his entire performance from the slapstick of prat-falls to his acting all posh is priceless to the point it is one of the best comedy western performances going. But Gregory Walcott as Bull is just as much fun with the whole dumb galloot thing being just as much fun, especially when it comes to the two lawmen who are tracking him and his friends down.

What this all boils down to is that "Man of the East" is one of the most ridiculous comedy westerns going but also one of the most enjoyable despite it lacking anything in the form of originality.