Wanted Johnny Texas (1967)

2.5 out of 5

James Newman plays the title character, a cold blooded killer who is hired by Colonel Steward to protect a wagon train and its settlers through territory rife with bloodthirsty outlaws. While wanted for murder, Johnny works for the Colonel and also tries to find time to avenge the death of his lover, Rosita, Rosalba Neri.

Junk director Emimmo Salvi directs this cheap and bizarre spy western structured as a peplum down to some of the sets and also the sensual Monika Brugger doing her best Chelo Alonso impersonation during an extended dancing sequence around a campfire.

Salvi's western is a watchable movie and passes muster as disposable high calorie filler with a wagon load of action and even some spy movie machinations such as when the Colonel tells Johnny to memorize his orders and destroy them. Furthermore, Brugger plays a female spy whom Johnny is supposed to team up with to locate detonators for a fort full of dynamite. However, the score is unmemorable and occasionally sounds like it would fit better in a Z grade sci fi picture.

Rosalba Neri gets the shaft again and suffers an indignity similar to her brevity in Arizona Colt, 1966. Fernando Sancho plays against type as an American army Colonel who captures Johnny and forces him to assist in his plans lest he be hanged for murder. There's a lot going on here and the film operates as brain dead fun on the level of Salvi's earlier films. Recommended for its curious qualities alone as it offers little else but mild, yet diverting amusement and thrills.

Maurizio Merli header graphic courtesy of Paddy O'Neill of Foxyfide Graphics