Issue #4 covers the filming of 100 Rifles in our tribute Jim Brown: The First Black Action Hero. Here, big Jim gets up close and personal with Raquel Welch in their groundbreaking love scene.
Following our recent reference to the 1976 western The Last Hard Men, Graham Rye wrote to tell us that Jerry Goldsmith's score for the film was primarily lifted from his earlier work on 100 Rifles.
See if you agree with Graham's observations:
"It was more or less the same score, slightly differently arranged, but the main them was the same. I remember from when I originally saw The Last Hard Men in the cinema. As I sat watching it, I thought, "Blimey, he's used the same score from 100 Rifles (a score I particularly enjoyed in 1969) - crafty bugger!" I had a LeRoy Holmes LP that covered a number of western themes, one of which was 100 Rifles. I think I played it so often you could see through it if you held it up to the light! I also remember that The Last Hard Men was so violent that there were scenes in it that even made me wince at the time. James Coburn's character was probably one of the nastiest villains ever committed to film. Andrew V. McLaglen directed this in Peckinpah mode. With a screenplay based on a book by Death Wish writer Brian Garfield, it's no wonder it was a slow-mo blood bath of a movie.
John Barry did the same with some of his score from Zulu (1964) and he re-worked it into Cry, the Beloved Country (1995), a quite wonderful and thought-provoking film with strong performances from Richard Harris and James Earl Jones. "
Retro Responds: Thanks for those observations, Graham...quite fascinating. I have a tin ear when it comes to picking these things up, but I'll bet many of the soundtrack fans among our readers must have noticed these instances, too. With all this talk about The Last Hard Men, I now have a real desire to see it again. I hope it eventually gets an official release on DVD. By the way, our columnist John Exshaw recently conducted a major interview with Andrew V. McLaglen that will be seen in a future issue of Cinema Retro. - Lee Pfeiffer