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A chief police inspector investigates the disappearance of a 25-year-old, intellectually disabled woman, the daughter of a lonely widower. After she turns up dead, the cops race to find the... See full summary »
Not a classic, but pretty entertaining nevertheless
A war veteran from southern Italy (Carlos Monzon) comes to a northern industrial town looking for work and gets tangled up with two rival clans of mafiosi. The plot of this sounds like another knock-off of "Yojimbo" (the Japanese film that inspired "A Fistful of Dollars" and any number of other spaghetti Westerns and Italian crime thrillers), but it's a little bit different in that the hero turns out to have a very personal vendetta against the leader of one of the rival mafia clans (Luc Merenda) and is not just a pure mercenary.
Stelvio Massi is considered on the great directors in the Italian crime genre. I wouldn't personally rank him with Fernando DiLeo, Enzo Castellari, Umberto Lenzi, or with some of the other talented directors who dabbled in the genre (Martino, Fulci, Dallamano), but this is probably the best of his films I've seen (with the possible exception of "Emergency Squad"). The producer is Gabriel Crisanti who was responsible for a series of notoriously sleazy exploitation flicks in the late 70's/early 80's--"Giallo in Venice", "Malabimba", "Burial Ground", "Patrick Lives Again". This was made a few years earlier and doesn't really hold a candle to any of those in the sleaze department, but it does feature three of the actors from Crisanti's later films--his then-wife Mariangela Giordano, Gianni Dei, and Leonora Fani.
Carlos Monzon has a good look, but he's not a particularly strong lead compared to someone like Franco Nero or Fabio Testi. Luc Merenda, however, really makes the movie as the handsome but very slimy villain. Mariangela Giordano also has a good role as Merenda's former mistress who has been pushed aside in favor of her own teenage daughter (Luisa Maneri). The daughter would have been a perfect part for Leonora Fani, but she plays ANOTHER young girl who gets sexually abused by Merenda's vile gangster. Her character is a child-like but very perceptive blind girl whose father tries to help out the hero with tragic consequences for them both (This definitely isn't one of her sexier roles, but it's one of her better performances). Gianni Dei, meanwhile, plays the Merenda characters only slightly less vicious younger brother.
This is neither an Italian crime thriller classic or an Italian sleaze classic, but it's pretty entertaining nevertheless,
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