Bring Me The Head of Alfredo Garcia

Bring Me The Head of Alfredo Garcia

(Sam Peckinpah, 1974)

Rating: 5/5

Reviewed by Dave Lancaster

Summary
: One of Sam Peckinpah's finest films, the tequila drenched Bring Me The Head of Alfredo Garcia is an absolute must.




When you think of Sam Peckinpah you picture desperate men tinged with integrity and madness, armed to the teeth taking on armies 10 times their size, fuelled by revenge, marred by their own vices, down and dirty, racing down a dusty path of destrcution. The Wild Bunch, The Getaway, Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid, Straw Dogs, Cross of Iron. But perhaps the most 'Peckinpah' of them all is Bring Me The Head of Alfredo Garcia.

Another examination of violence and virtue, it stars an outstanding Warren Oates as a booze-filled ex-army man turned local cantina piano player who takes on the bounty of the titular Alfredo Garcia to help him and his wife settle down. Of course, it's never going to be that easy.

Peckinpah's narrative takes a few interesting twists and turns that shouldn't be spoiled here for those who haven't seen it but what is worth noting is how the film changes direction and tone around half way through and becomes a twisted roadtrip. The destination isn't just a gunfight but also redemption. How Peckinpah and Oates contort the genre expectations with a cocktail of subtle and explosive ingredients is masterful.



To watch Bring Me The Head of Alfredo Garcia is to take a trip to the sunbaked depths of Mexico. It's an unforgettably nightmarish vacation. One of the key action pictures of the 1970s, it begs a contemporary rediscovery.

Arrow's new Blu-ray which boasts an incredible amount of bonus material from Kris Kristofferson singing songs and remembering Peckinpah while accompanying himself on acoustic guitar to in-depth documentaries on the director and, if you're lucky enough to get the limited edition, a bonus disc containing even more hours of insight. Absolutely essential.  

LIMITED TWO-DISC EDITION CONTENTS:

  • Brand new 4K restoration from the original camera negative produced by Arrow Films exclusively for this release
  • Original 1.0 mono audio
  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • Brand new audio commentary by Stephen Prince, author of Savage Cinema: Sam Peckinpah and the Rise of Ultraviolent Movies, recorded exclusively for this release
  • Audio commentary by Sam Peckinpah scholars Paul Seydor, Garner Simmons and David Weddle, moderated by Nick Redman
  • Sam Peckinpah: Man of Iron, Paul Joyce s feature-length 1993 documentary featuring interviews with James Coburn, Kris Kristofferson, Monte Hellman, Ali MacGraw, James Robards and others, available on home video in the UK for the first time ever
  • The John Player Lecture: Sam Peckinpah, audio recording of the director s on-stage appearance at the National Film Theatre
  • Four songs by Kris Kristofferson, filmed during the making of Man of Iron
  • Theatrical trailer
  • Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Peter Strain
  • Extensive collector s booklet containing new writing by Alexandra Heller-Nicholas and numerous reprints including interviews and more [Limited Edition exclusive]
  • LIMITED-EDITION BONUS BLU-RAY: Sam Peckinpah: Man of Iron The Director s Cut - A brand-new, extended version of Paul Joyce s documentary, containing more than TEN HOURS of previously unseen interview footage, featuring actors RG Armstrong, James Coburn, LQ Jones, Kris Kristofferson, Ali MacGraw and Jason Robards, director Monte Hellman, producers Michael Deeley and Daniel Melnick, writers Alan Sharp and Jim Silke, writer-producer Gordon Dawson, assistant Katherine Haber, editor Garth Craven, satirist Mort Sahl, property master Bob Visciglia, bar owner Tom Runyon and cousin Bob Peckinpah, plus newly-shot interviews with Joyce, Haber and actor David Warner.

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