Hobsonville’s citizens hire a gunslinger to rid them of the McIntock clan that is forcibly and unlawfully taxing the townsfolk under the pretext of town development.


This third and final Sabata movie brings Lee Van Cleef – the original Sabata – back after a hiatus. Here, he finds himself on a mercenary mission to topple the corrupt McIntock family, which has been unfairly imposing a new, exorbitant taxation of the townsfolk. Sabata comes in, shakes things up with his devil may care attitude and deadeye aim, and causes trouble. Turns out the McIntocks have been hoarding gold and minting new doubloons, which interests Sabata and his sidekicks a great deal. A word on his sidekicks: If you’ve seen the previous two Sabata movies you’ll know that he travels with some carnival daredevils, who all come in handy during a battle because they jump, flip, and generally know how to avoid getting shot, or are great at pretending to get shot.

While I enjoyed Yul Brynner as Sabata in Adios, Sabata, Cleef is the real deal, and he seems to be having a really good time in this role. The action is plentiful and the climax is fun and memorable. The score by Marcello Giombini is highlighted with some good songs, and the direction by Gianfranco Parolini is solid. All cards on the table, Return of Sabata is a fine way to close out the trilogy.

Kino Lorber’s new blu ray of this film looks noticeably improved over the previous MGM DVD release, and I really enjoy the fact that it comes with a reversible slipcover with two variants of the cover artwork. Fans of spaghetti westerns take note!

About the Author

david j. moore

david j. moore is the author of World Gone Wild: A Survivor’s Guide to Post-Apocalyptic Movies and the upcoming book The Good, the Tough and the Deadly: Action Movies and Stars, coming April, 2016 from Schiffer Publishing.