100 RIFLES is a dud 1969 western, set below the border around 20th-century turn, with a trio of good guys leading the Yaqui Indians against their Federale oppressors. The movie drew a blizzard of publicity, using star Raquel Welch’s ‘shower scene’ and some then-controversial love tussles with Jim Brown, but neither steamed-up event did anything to help the payoff, (though it did recover its $3,920,000 budget by grossing $10,000,000). The third hero is Burt Reynolds, with a big hat and a breezy attitude that carried him through this turkey, while poking fun at it in the trades. Burt & Raquel and Raquel & Jim did not get along: she managed that with many of the people she worked with. Then again, considering Brown’s rep with women, maybe she didn’t feel like being friendly enough to get roughed up.
Choppy, overlong at 110 minutes, with dispirited direction by Tom Gries, poorly co-written by the director with Clair Huffaker. Filmed in Spain, at least it boasts loads of action, well handled by second-unit director Chuck Roberson, John Wayne’s longtime stunt double. Jerry Goldsmith delivers a suitably Latin score. All the gunfire and stunts are empty noise, when saddled with the lousy acting by a posing Welch and a stone-faced Brown, both bested by Burt as ‘Yaqui Joe’. With Fernando Lamas, Dan O’Herlihy and Eric Braeden (Hans Gudegast).