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Cigarette smugglers in Naples run into problems with cocaine operations being set up by a rival smuggler. Full of violence, including a women's face being burned off with a blow torch and a graphic rape scene. Written by
It's great to see all the familiar faces from the heydays of European bad cinema together again. Bad film-making without the slightest wit or irony. Those were the days... They all lined up for this very sleazy and sadistic "Poliziottesco" by Lucio Fulci, his only foray into the crime genre, and I'm glad it was the only one he made. Fabio Testi is the focal point as Luca Di Angelo, an idealistic family man and cigarette smuggler in this tale of mob warfare in economically depressed Naples. When a rival gang massacres his brother and abducts his wife, Luca goes berserk and triggers an all-out mob war, with virtually every Don in town getting involved.
Testi is OK in the lead and Marcel Bozzufi (THE FRENCH CONNECTION) makes quite an impact as "The Margliese", a Frenchman who tries to muscle his way into the Neapolitan crime world. He really is the most sadistic and ruthless crime figure you'll ever see. I figure this film would satisfy most Fulci fans. Torture, rape, bare flesh, endless shoot-outs and plenty of sleaze and violence make this slightly entertaining. I could sit through this because there's quite a lot of action and it's never really dull, but otherwise beware. This film has some of the most atrocious English dubbing I know , real bad, only made worse by the already howlingly awful dialog and some wooden acting. What about that club scene? I think they took some dialog from a totally different movie there (Blue Underground's release didn't include an Italian audiotrack), it didn't make sense whatsoever. Even by grade-Z poliziotteschi standards, this was pretty mystifying.
The film also features a soundtrack with some Italian pseudo-rock 1980 style. I can't really describe it, but it was annoying and totally inappropriate for the scenes. Fulci does show some of his earlier cinematic flair in some (especially interior) scenes, but then ruins it all in the next with bad lighting and bad editing, like showing somebody's head blown off, before the actual shot is being fired. In an earlier comment someone remarked the gore was very realistic. Well, what can I say? If you think blood looks like strawberry juice, I guess it does.
Camera Obscura --- 4/10
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