Kid il monello del west (1973)

Obviously by 1973 there had been so many Italian westerns that the genre needed fresh ideas or, more to the point of how the Italian exploitation industry made movies — weirder ones. That’s how we get Bad Kids of the West, a movie in which most of the cast are under the age of ten, foremost amongst them Kid Terror O’Hara (Andrea Balestri), the leader of the group of kids who actually do something constructive with their afternoons and create their own town within the abandoned buildings of Torque.

When Kid hears that criminals are about to rob the bank of River City, they get their first — I mean, their plan has a child smuggling into a suitcase, so it can’t help but succeed — but they probably didn’t figure on the gang hunting them down for the cash.

Seeing as how this is an Italian comedy, you know that at one point that one of the kids will urinate in a mug and it will be served as beer to the outlaws. You may not figure that one of the boys is called Lollipop and plays with gender all the way back in 1973. That said, the chubby kid is nicknamed Butterball because he eats butter sandwiches covered in butter and farts constantly (I see so much of myself in him; a hero) so it’s not all — actually not at all — politically correct.

There’s also a young kickboxer, because by this point, martial arts films were getting big worldwide. So yes, an entire Children of the Corn — but positive and nice — in the Italian west with the son of a sheriff and the son of a gunfighter as the heroes.

This was directed by Tonino Ricci, who would go on to make A Man Called RageRush, Night of the SharksEncounters in the DeepThor the Conqueror and a bizarre western called Robin Hood, Arrows, Beans and Karate. It was written by Mario Amendola (The White, the Yellow, and the Black, Fulci’s Dracula in Brianza), Roberto Amoroso and Bruno Corbucci, who wrote 148 movies (Django is one of them) and directed SuperfantagenioMiami Supercops and When Men Carried Clubs and Women Played Ding-Dong.

I love when movies for kids are filled with swearing, bad taste jokes and violence, so this one’s a winner!

You can watch this on YouTube.

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