Synopsis of Kill Them All and Come Back Alone
Clyde Mac Kay is hired by Southern General Lynch to infiltrate a Northern base behind enemy lines in order to steal their gold reserves. Clyde has a squad of extraordinary fighters at his side, including the cunning Hoagy, the knife expert Blade and the husky Bogard. To ensure that no witnesses remain alive, Clyde is given the mission "Kill them all and come back alone". The raid on the base succeeds, but the greed for gold sets the men against each other at an early stage. When Lynch suddenly appears in the uniform of the Yankees, it becomes clear that he has completely different plans with the gold.
Director Enzo G. Castellari distinguishes himself above all as a specialist for gripping action scenes. Outstanding examples are the police thriller The Big Racket or the war adventure Inglorious Bastards. The latter has become much better known since Quentin Tarantino's pseudo-remake Inglourious Basterds. Castellari has traveled in a wide variety of genres and began his career with Italo Westerns, with Kill Them All and Come Back Alone counting towards his earlier films. With its extravagant action scenes, the film is rather untypical for the genre. The interesting premise about Mac Kay's mission to assassinate all of his mercenary colleagues after they have stolen the gold together is interesting, but soon gets lost in the action. You can roughly divide the movie into three parts: The opening sequence in which Mac Kay demonstrates to the southern generals what his men are capable of, the raid on the Northmen's fort and the escape from the prison camp. In each of these parts, Castellari brings on brilliant action with brawls, shootings and explosions. The thin storyline and the poorly developed characters have to be condoned. Over large parts, the film looks like a show-reel in which Castellari demonstrates his skills as an action director. Kill Them All and Come Back Alone is more of an action movie than an Italo western with a poor plot, but the action scenes are first class. For this reason alone it's worth a look.
Only minimal differences between the two versions on the US Blu-ray
The US Blu-ray of Kino Lorber contains two versions. One is the uncut Italian version and the other is a slightly shorter version called "English Cut". This name seems a bit strange, because both the opening and closing credits are in French and the only other difference is that the first shot was removed from the prisoner transport. The selection of the audio tracks is also a little bit unusual. In the uncut Italian version, you can choose between the English and Italian sound with optional English subtitles. The shorter version has twice the English sound (probably mixed differently, because the second track is a bit duller) and the audio commentary by Alex Cox. Basically, you should therefore choose the Italian version. The "English Cut" is especially interesting for those who either want to hear the audio commentary or watch the French opening and closing credits. The short cut at the beginning of the film seems to be trivial.
US version: 99:08 min.
The English/French version was compared to the Italian version. Both are included on the US Blu-ray by Kino Lorber.
Right at the beginning, the Italian version shows a shot of the prisoner transport.
IT: 29 sec.
Alternative title insertions as the characters are introduced and the movie title is faded in.
No time difference.
Alternative title insertions in the credits. In the Italian version, the credits are also longer.
US: 59 sec.
IT: 1:54 min.