Giorgio Pellegrini, a former left-wing activist turned terrorist has fled to Central America and fought with a guerrilla movement. Fifteen years later he is fed up with living in the jungle... See full summary »
An old Gothic cathedral, built over a mass grave, develops strange powers which trap a number of people inside with ghosts from a 12th Century massacre seeking to resurrect an ancient demon from the bowels of the Earth.
Feodor Chaliapin Jr.
A weed smoking, friend to the underworld, bad behaving vice questore is sent from Rome to Aosta, in the Alps, for unknown (but likely for indiscipline) reasons. Nevertheless he is one hell ... See full summary »
The story's thread is based upon a policeman's search for the killer of a prostitute in 1943 Italy, but in reality it is a morality tale about war, fascism, partisans, and the other factions participating in the second world war. The policeman and his family portray what happened in Italy during that period, with families torn apart by a civil war where brother against sister was a sad reality. The acting is excellent. Michele Placido is the policeman who does not take sides in the conflict, concentrating instead on his pursuit of a murderer; one might conclude that his fixation on finding the culprit gives him an excuse to avoid choosing a cause. He gives a measured performance as a young man and as the storyteller some twenty years later. His sister Lucia (Alina Nedelea) is fiery as the vengeful fascist recruit who hates the allies responsible for her husband's death in an air raid, while his brother Ettore (Alessandro Preziosi) is well cast as the partisan. Barbara Bobulova is credible as the murdered prostitute and her twin sister
Non-Europeans may find the various personal conflicts somewhat alien, as Europeans may not always appreciate the currents that underlined the American Civil War, but at its most basic level the film does a good job of revealing what each of the characters feels. The fighting is realistic and never overdone. As one who lived in Italy during that era, I was particularly impressed by the scene where fascist snipers were shooting civilians from a church steeple on the last day of hostilities; I witnessed an almost identical scene, except that the church was a synagogue.
Michele Soavi is the talented director.
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