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A Reason to Live, a Reason to Die (1972)

Una ragione per vivere e una per morire (original title)
PG | | Western | 6 August 1973 (Spain)
Branded a coward for surrendering his New Mexico fort to the Confederates without firing a shot, a Union colonel attempts to redeem himself by leading a band of condemned prisoners on a suicide mission to recapture it.



(screenplay), (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Colonello Pembroke
Maggiore Ward
Eli Sampson
Georges Géret ...
Sergente Spike
Reinhard Kolldehoff ...
Sergente Brent (as Rene Kolldehoff)
Guy Mairesse ...
Donald MacIvers
José Suárez ...
maggiore Charles Ballard (as Jose Suarez)
Ugo Fangareggi ...
Benito Stefanelli ...
Samuel Pickett un ex condannato
Adolfo Lastretti ...
Will Fernandez / Will Culder (as Guy Ranson)
Fabrizio Moresco ...
Ward's Assistant
Francisco Sanz ...
Farmer (as Paco Sanz)
Carla Mancini
Joe Pollini ...
Mario Pardo ...
Roger, Farmer's Son


A dishonoured army officer saves the lives of some hardened criminals on condition that they help him regain his honour. Will they live up to his expectations? Written by Hector Farrugia <hector.farrugia@magnet.mt>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

recapture | mission | fort | officer | army | See All (42) »


A handful of condemned men on an impossible mission, against hopeless odds...




PG | See all certifications »



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Release Date:

6 August 1973 (Spain)  »

Also Known As:

A Reason to Live, a Reason to Die  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(1973) (theatrical) | (Northern Countries PAL DVD) | (original uncut)

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The prison set from John Guillermin's " El Condor " was re-used during the filming. See more »


At the end of Telly Savalas' first scene he lights up a modern cigarette which clearly has a filter. See more »


Featured in Dusk to Dawn Drive-In Trash-o-Rama Show Vol. 5 (1998) See more »

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User Reviews

James Coburn at his best! Premise of story is good.
15 April 2004 | by (Apple Valley, CA) – See all my reviews

Who wouldn't jump at the chance to get off a gallows and take a chance at living? The motivation is, of course, gold...lot's of it. James Coburn does a very good job of portraying a soldier seeking justice for his murdered wife, and goes after Telly Sevallis with a vengance, using condemmed men as his team. Much like the Dirty Dozen, but without the military structure of WWII. Liked this movie but the sound track is typically Italian...overmodulated and scratchy. When I first saw this film I thought I was watching a Sergio Leone spaghetti western...even the music sounded the same. In spite of the similes and plagarised plots from other films in this genre, this one still turned out well. Good photography and special effects. Hope someday someone will remaster the sound and turn out a smashing DVD. Enjoy!

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