As many of the original characters died at the end of the original Magnificent Seven, Yul Brynner is the only one back for the sequel. Unfortunately for fans of the first film and Westerns in general this is no way near as good as the original. The redeeming qualities are few and far between.
A definite one is the Oscar nominated score by Elmer Bernstein. Music can make a scene much more powerful. Watching a scene that made you cry without music and there likely will be a different effect. It won’t be as powerful. We don’t really realize it, but music in film is paramount. Or at least good music is.
Blu-ray has done some wonders for certain older pictures and this is one that definitely benefited. While some of the scenes still look a little “dirty” others are crisp and clean. Wonderful to look at. Filmed in Spain so much of the scenery is beautiful. Director Burt Kennedy (The Train Robbers, The War Wagon) really shows his smarts and takes advantage of the natural environment he has been afforded.
After the Magnificent Seven rescued the small Mexican city near the U.S. border from a group of banditos and took on high casualties, Chico (Julian Mateos – Four Rode Out) decided to stay on and live there. Later on, some men come to the town and take all the men living there hostage. Chico’s wife searches out Chris (Yul Brynner – The Magnificent Seven, The King and I) for his help. Chris finds former Magnificent Seven member Vin (Robert Fuller – from television’s Walker, Texas Ranger) and they get four more men together to form a group that is going to do their best to get Chico back.
As you can see the story is quite similar to the original’s, but somehow there is a world of difference. The pacing of the film is all off. It is awkward and clunky. Maybe we all had unreasonable expectations for the sequel due to the quality of the original. It never really emerges from the shadows of its predecessor.