Trails and tabletops in Sad Hill
| Apr 8, 2019 |
The good, the ugly, the bad ... and the biker
I confess, I'm a fan of spaghetti western, maybe it's because I'm not a child anymore or because I love seeing the hard and challenging look of Clint Eastwood in "The good, the ugly and the bad". Maybe you don´t know it, but a good part of the western-related film productions of that time were filmed in Spain, almost all of them in the deserts of Almeria, although one of the most famous and mythical scenes was filmed in the province of Burgos . The Sad Hill Cemetery was the setting for the last moments of the film and the most remembered sequence, the three-game duel between Clint Eastwood, Eli Wallach and Lee Van Cleef. All this masterfully directed by Sergio Leone to the sound rhythm of "The Ecstasy of Gold", the majestic theme of the soundtrack by Ennio Morricone. Curiously, this is the theme with which Metallica is prepared to go on stage in all its concerts, and that is the western fever attacks us all.
I could not think of a better way to announce my recent collaboration with the guys from Reverse Components than with an adventure in the purest western style, something mythical, with character and above all with a duel where in the end the good guy wins (also the ugly one “Tuco” gets his way in the end).
Unearthing Sad Hill
I already knew the movie, but what I did not know is that some parts had been shot in Spain. Specifically the scenes of the bridge, the trenches and the cemetery of Sad Hill, the key and most famous scene of the film. All of them were shot in the Mirandilla Valley, Burgos. I found it fascinating so I started to investigate a little and discovered the culprits that Sad Hill was alive again and among us so many years later: David Alba, Diego Montero, Sergio Garcia and Joseba del Valle among many other members of the Sad Hill Cultural Association. I think that without knowing it they also made history when they succeeded in unearthing and re-creating the movie's impressive cemetery.
The scene of the shooting suffered a progressive deterioration during the years, until getting to disappear totally. Nature did its work and covered everything with its vegetation until everyone forgot that one day there was shot the most famous scene of the Western. Much of the old crosses of the cemetery are found in the houses of some neighbors who took them years ago to cover leaks.
The boys of the association started by taking out the central cobblestone, an extremely hard job but they managed to do it thanks to many volunteers who came from different parts of the country and even from France and Italy, attracted without doubt by the magnetism of the film and the place. Later and after taking strength decided to devise a plan to carry out the project of the tombs and crosses. Boom, suddenly the idea arose, sponsor tombs, simply great. In this way they achieved, not without a multitude of hours of work and effort, giving life back to Sad Hill.
You can enjoy a magnificent documentary where the reconstruction work is narrated and documented in a very faithful and emotional way. A common goal, a dream, an illusion made the impossible possible. "Unearthing Sad Hill", directed by Guillermo de Oliveira. Available on Netflix: https://www.netflix.com/title/80988832
I also recommend you visit the association's website:
The BFM Route
The boys of the Cultural Association Sad Hill have prepared a route that runs through the places that were used as a stage in the film and is ideal for cycling. For this adventure I have allowed the license to modify the route and adapt it to the areas and sections I wanted to travel on my bike. I did not want to miss the Bajada de La Yecla, a gorge with footbridges located in Santo Domingo de Silos, the Monastery of San Pedro de Arlanza, the town of Carazo, Contreras ... Without a doubt a nice route that has allowed me thanks to my bicycle to discover this incredible story, that without doing it in a premeditated way has emotionally united me to the spirit of the film and the people who have made this feat possible.
Have you been wanting to see the movie, right? Do not hesitate to do it, it is a classic film, the one that leaves a good taste in your mouth. I leave a link to see it but I'm sure you'll find a way to do it as you like through the networks.
Thinking to enjoying one of the best soundtracks of the Western?, here you have the version that the boys of the Danish National Symphony Orchestra make of "The Ecstasy of Gold" by Ennio Morricone. https://youtu.be/enuOArEfqGo
In July 1966 the Spanish army erected a huge cemetery in Burgos.
That cemetery had more than 5,000 graves ... but no one was buried in them.
It was the scenario that would give life to one of the most remembered Western films.
The scene of the filming suffered a progressive deterioration during the years, until it disappears completely.
I love seeing the hard and challenging look of Clint Eastwood on "The good, the ugly and the bad".
On my route I did not want to miss La Bajada de La Yecla, a gorge with footbridges located in Santo Domingo de Silos, the Monastery of San Pedro de Arlanza, the town of Carazo, Contreras ...
The boys of the Cultural Association Sad Hill have prepared a route that runs through the places that were used as a stage in the film and is ideal for cycling.
"When you have to shoot, shoot, don't talk!" - Tuco
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