This rarely seen Budd Boetticher movie is part of the year-long 70x70 season. London writer, filmmaker and 'psychogeographer' Iain Sinclair celebrates his 70th birthday year, with the showing of 70 films, handpicked for their association with his work and shown in venues all over London. Here is a full list of the excellent programme.
Iain Sinclair on A Time for Dying:
'A potent late discovery in a Hastings charity pit where last movies rub shoulders with CGI slaughter excesses and botched exorcisms. Classic Boetticher is front-cover Cahiers du Cinema. Is namechecked in Breathless.
Pared-down journeying with Randolph Scott, Karen Steele, and superior heavies like Richard Boone, Henry Silva, Lee Van Cleef, James Coburn. By 1969, the situation was complicated: cross-border time, rows with the wrong people.
A lack of interest in the pure western form. Which elects this one straight into the anti-pantheon, post-cinema purgatory. When nobody cares, interesting things happen. The actors are like promoted extras hoping for television.
Boetticher takes the writing credit, but it feels like they made it up as they went along. Lucien Ballard was still around to shoot it. A truly posthumous artefact. And better for it. Audie Murphy takes a production credit and drifts in as Jesse James.'
Here (and above) is the opening of the movie.