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Film / My Name Is Nobody

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My Name Is Nobody (1973) is an Affectionate Parody of the Spaghetti Western, originally released in Italy as Il mio nome è Nessuno and starring Henry Fonda as an aging, legendary gunslinger named Jack Beauregard who wants nothing more than to retire in peace, and Terence Hill as "Nobody", a man who idolized Beauregard and wants to see him die in a blaze of glory fighting singlehanded against the infamous Wild Bunch.

The film is directed by Tonino Valerii, who had previously made Day of Anger and The Price of Power, but Sergio Leone produced the film and directed several of its major scenes. It was a major hit in Europe, but flopped at the American box office. Leone also produced a loose sequel, Nobody's the Greatest (or A Genius, Two Partners and a Dupe), directed by Damiano Damiani also starring Terence Hill.

My Name Is Nobody provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Affectionate Parody: By this point, the spaghetti western had become a parody of itself. Sergio Leone and his team wanted to be the ones to make the ultimate "joke" version of the genre.
    • Especially true of Ennio Morricone's score, which explicitly "quotes" his work on Leone's serious Westerns.
  • Artistic License – History: The Wild Bunch was a real outlaw gang, but there was only 11 of them and in fact, the movie version has little to do with the real deal aside from the name.
  • Ascended Fanboy: Nobody is a young gunslinger who wants to help his idol become the ultimate legend among the gunmen of the West, by ending his career in big style. He even calls himself Nobody, so it could always be said that he did all the great feats of his final months with help from Nobody, and Nobody by his side. And that Nobody was able to kill him in a duel because Nobody can draw faster than him.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Sullivan initially seems to be pulling the strings behind the Wild Bunch, and at one point he tries to hire Nobody to kill Jack, but he's ultimately rather harmless and mostly concerned that Jack wants to avenge his brother's death (which Jack actually doesn't).
  • Brick Joke: The barber scene at the end.
  • Casual Danger Dialog: The first meeting between Jack and Nobody, as long as the bomb is in the room.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Beauregard witnesses the Wild Bunch loading dynamite into their flashy saddle bags, exact replicas of Nobody's, which he comments can be seen for miles. Later, he uses this to kill at least half of the massive gang.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Keeping a barber honest by putting a gun/finger up his anus.
  • *Click* Hello: At the start of the movie, an outlaw posing as a barber prepares to kill Jack Beauregard when he hears a click...and notices Beauregard has his gun held against his crotch. He dutifully finishes the shave job.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Occurs anytime either Nobody or Jack draw a gun. Especially when Jack fights the 150 strong Wild Bunch.
  • Drinking Contest: The saloon scene features an unusual one. A participant had to drink four progressively smaller glasses of whiskey. After he finishes each drink, he has to toss the glass over his shoulder, draw, turn and shoot the glass before it hits the ground.
  • Fastest Gun in the West: Nobody is faster than Jack although that is never actually tested since the gunfight is a fake.
  • Good Old Ways: Subverted, Jack cares little for avenging family, much to Nobody's chagrin.
  • Grand Finale: Nobody believes a famous gunslinger can't simply go into retirement and absolutely has to have his career end in an epic and dramatic way.
  • Hall of Mirrors: Nobody lures a pair of mooks in such a hall, to better harass them.
  • Hat Damage: Parodied endlessly, at one point a character takes hold of his hat because he realizes someone's intent to shoot it off. The hat still gets a bullethole.
  • Homage Shot: Compare Nobody's slapping with Trinity's (movie here), and the Spaghetti-bearded Mooks reactions.
    Nobody: Fellows like you never seem to catch on. It's actually very simple.
    Trinity: You'd like to see that again ? It's hard to catch the first time.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills: Jack is capable of shooting Nobody's hat 4 times from the hip, sending each bullet through the same hole. Made even more impressive when we see a first person view from Jack, whose advancing age renders Nobody little more than a hazy outline in his vision.
  • In the Back: Averted, since Nobody is just that good.
    Nobody: It ain't nice to shoot somebody in the back. *Slap*
  • Invoked Trope: Nobody's M.O. It's not enough for an old west hero to just retire and live peacefully in Europe somewhere. He has to leave in style, leave an unmissable mark on the west for people to remember him and then be seen to die ironically and leave a snappy epitaph.
  • Juggling Loaded Guns: The main characters go beyond not using proper gun safety, to firing guns in crowded rooms whilst very intoxicated and using bullets to play pool. All of this is played for laughs.
  • Last Stand: Played with in the fight with the Wild Bunch. Jack is prepared to go down fighting, alone against the 150, when suddenly Nobody arrives in a stolen train. When Jack approaches the train, Nobody backs up, refusing to let him on and save him, until Jack has killed enough of them to make him an immortal legend.
  • Mundane Utility: Showy gunplay to make three men put their hands up, so they catch the roof before it falls on them.
  • No Name Given: Nobody.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Nobody isn't as naive as he acts, although his idealism and hero-worship are absolutely genuine.
  • Retirony: The premise of the story is that Jack wants to retire. Nobody helps him fake his death in a gunfight since he believes this trope to be a law of nature.
  • Revenge Before Reason: Defied: Sullivan helped kill Jack's brother, but Jack notes his brother was a rotten guy and has no interest risking his life to avenge him, even if he was his brother.
  • Shout-Out: Nobody finds a grave for Sam Peckinpah in a cemetery, declaring it "a beautiful name in Navajo." Naming the villains the Wild Bunch doesn't hurt, either.
  • Shy Bladder: Invoked and Played for Laughs. The main character stands opposite to the train driver (the urinals are in the middle of the room), deliberately making grimaces so that the driver is too nervous to pee. Once he finally succeeds, he is too busy peeing to notice that his train got stolen.
  • The Trickster: Given his willingness to manipulate Jack and the Wild Bunch for his own entertainment, Nobody certainly qualifies.
  • Twilight of the Old West: In his closing monologue (which is a letter written to Nobody while he is leaving to Europe), Jack laments that there is a new age coming, where being a good gunfighter is not enough to beat bad guys.