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Once Upon a Time In the West

HD   PG-13 Closed Captioning

Sergio Leone

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About the Movie

In Sergio Leone's epic Western, shot partly in Monument Valley, a revenge story becomes an epic contemplation of the Western past. To get his hands on prime railroad land in Sweetwater, crippled railroad baron Morton (Gabriele Ferzetti) hires killers, led by blue-eyed sadist Frank (Henry Fonda), who wipe out property owner Brett McBain (Frank Wolff) and his family. McBain's newly arrived bride, Jill (Claudia Cardinale), however, inherits it instead. Both outlaw Cheyenne (Jason Robards) and lethally mysterious Harmonica (Charles Bronson) take it upon themselves to look after Jill and thwart Frank's plans to seize her land. As alliances and betrayals mutate, it soon becomes clear that Harmonica wants to get Frank for another reason — it has "something to do with death." As in his "Dollars" trilogy, Leone transforms the standard Western plot through the visual impact of widescreen landscapes and the figures therein. At its full length, Once Upon a Time in the West is Leone's operatic masterwork, worthy of its legend-making title.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 56
  • Fresh: 55
  • Rotten: 1
  • Average Rating: 9.0/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: It is mostly fun for the way it cherishes movie styles and attitudes from the past. – Vincent Canby, New York Times, Jul 16, 2008

Fresh: One of the greatest face movies ever made. – Douglas Pratt, Hollywood Reporter, Jun 24, 2010

Fresh: If only the first 10 minutes of Sergio Leone's Once Upon a Time in the West still existed, this most hyperbolic of oat operas would still be acknowledged as one of the genre's greatest exhumations. – Chuck Stephens, Village Voice, Jun 24, 2010

Fresh: Leone (1921-1989) is here at the peak of his epic powers. – Andrew Sarris, New York Observer, Jun 24, 2010

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

I'd give this six stars if I it were possible...

Not only is this one of the greatest westerns ever made, but this is one of the greatest films ever made, period. Henry Fonda plays one of the most horrible villians you will witness on screen in your entire lifetime. If you haven't seen this film yet, than what are you waiting for? This is nothing short of a cinematic masterpiece.

Leave it to Leone

Leave it to an Italian to foster such a deep appreciation for the Western. As a child, my father would spend many of his afternoons sitting in front of one of the few televisions in his hometown of Cherasco, to watch his favorite American Westerns. In pre/post WWII Italy, the American Hollywood stars of the era were practically worshiped by the nation's citizens. It was the time and the place to be a dreamer, where elligible bachelorettes fantasized over the day they'd find their Gary Cooper. Decades later, out of this escapist tradition, blossomed the Spaghetti Westerns of Sergio Leone, a legend of Cinecitta. If you've never seen Once Upon a Time in the West, you are in for a real treat. It's a true masterpiece.

All-time Classic Western

This is the all-time spaghetti Western classic, punctuated by Ennio Morricone's music. If you get a chance to download this flick, don't pass it by.

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Once Upon a Time In the West
View in iTunes
  • $14.99
  • Genre: Western
  • Released: 1968

Customer Ratings