Raffaele Capece, un insegnante di mandolino, fa il posteggiatore nei locali pubblici. Ha due guai incurabili : ha una gamba offesa ed un padre inguaribile giocatore, che sperpera al lotto ... See full summary »
In pre-World War II Sicily, just as the fascists come to power, two men fall in love with the same woman. The changes in their country's politics ultimately take all three on a journey across the ocean to New York.
Raffaele Capece, un insegnante di mandolino, fa il posteggiatore nei locali pubblici. Ha due guai incurabili : ha una gamba offesa ed un padre inguaribile giocatore, che sperpera al lotto ed alla roulette i magri guadagni del figlio. E proprio a causa del vizio paterno si trova coinvolto in una serie di misteriosi omicidi, collegati ad una grossa quantità di denaro. Per ottenere i soldi, bisogna entrare in possesso di un prezioso cucchiaio, sul quale è registrata la prova di crimini commessi durante la seconda guerra mondiale. Dopo aver rischiato la vita diverse volte, Raffaele giungerà finalmente a capo dell'intricata faccenda. Ed entrerà anche in possesso dei soldi. Written by
Marcello Mastroianni plays a Chaplinesque mandolin player complete with curly hair, funny moustache and silly walk. In order to pay off his fathers gambling debts, he agrees to play a serenade under somebody's window in the middle of the night. Soon he is surrounded by dead bodies and has to figure out who is behind this plot before he is either jailed or thrown out of a window himself. Other suspects include Ornella Muti as a nurse from a mental hospital, Michel Piccoli as a famous conductor and Zeudi Araya as his flirtatious wife.
If this is supposed to be a comedy it literally falls flat. The sight of people repeatedly falling out of windows is not very funny and neither is the completely over the top gangster character in a fur coat. Only Renato Pozzetto as a police inspector who seems to have graduated from the Inspector Clouseau Academy of clumsiness (with a degree in Chief Inspector Dreyfus self-mutilation) manages to conjure up some laughs, but his part does not amount to much.
Director Sergio Corbucci does make the most of the beautiful Napoli scenery but the story takes too many different twists and turns. Particularly unnerving is a scene in which Marcello (in drag) starts to make out with Ornella Muti (who is more than 30 years his junior). A more suitable love interest for him would have been Capucine, who is waisted in the small part of a nun. Eventually the plot becomes so confusing that it takes about twenty minutes of talky exposition scenes to clear everything up.
4 out of 10
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