Clint Eastwood as The Man With No Name in the 1965 Italian-made Western For a Few Dollars More
John Springer Collection/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images

The 15 Best Spaghetti Western Movies Ever Made + Where to Stream Them

Spaghetti Westerns challenged the traditional Western formula.

The "Spaghetti Western" is a subgenre of Western films that emerged predominantly in the 1960s and early 1970s, characterized by its unique style and production origins. These films earned their peculiar nickname because they were primarily made by Italian filmmakers (hence "Spaghetti") and often had a distinctly European influence in their approach to the traditional American Western genre.

These films often feature morally ambiguous, anti-heroic protagonists navigating a lawless and gritty frontier. Unlike the clear-cut good versus evil narratives of classic American Westerns, Spaghetti Westerns thrive on moral ambiguity, complex characters and unpredictable outcomes. Iconic directors including Sergio Leone and Sergio Corbucci are synonymous with the genre, crafting tales of revenge, greed and survival in the unforgiving landscapes of the American West (often filmed in the arid regions of southern Spain).

Ennio Morricone's evocative and memorable musical scores are another hallmark of Spaghetti Westerns, creating an atmosphere that complements the genre's distinctive visuals. The films often showcase vast, desolate landscapes, and the gunfights are portrayed with brutal realism, sometimes accompanied by close-up shots of violence.

Notably, many Spaghetti Westerns were filmed with international casts, with the dialogue later dubbed in post-production. This led to a unique quality in the way actors' voices matched their lip movements, adding to the genre's surreal charm.

Spaghetti Westerns challenged the traditional Western formula, introducing a European sensibility, grit and moral complexity.

Here are the 15 best films born from the Spaghetti Western genre.

READ MORE: Weird, Wild West: 10 Cult Western Films that Are Off the Beaten Trail + Where to Watch Them