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Caliber 9 (1972)

Milano calibro 9 (original title)
A former gangster is forced to resume his old lifestyle when his violent, jealous ex-colleagues and the police believe that he knows the location of a stolen cache of $300,000.


Fernando Di Leo


Giorgio Scerbanenco (book), Fernando Di Leo (story) | 2 more credits »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Gastone Moschin ... Ugo Piazza
Barbara Bouchet ... Nelly Borden
Mario Adorf ... Rocco Musco
Frank Wolff ... Commissioner
Luigi Pistilli ... Mercuri / Fonzino
Ivo Garrani Ivo Garrani ... Don Vincenzo
Philippe Leroy ... Chino
Lionel Stander ... Americano / Mikado
Mario Novelli ... Pasquale Talarico
Giuseppe Castellano ... Nicola
Salvatore Arico Salvatore Arico ... Luca
Fernando Cerulli ... Hotel Clerk
Giulio Baraghini Giulio Baraghini ... Brigadier
Alessandro Tedeschi Alessandro Tedeschi ... Old Courier with Glasses
Franco Beltramme Franco Beltramme ... Hood


Just out of prison, ex-con Ugo Piazza meets his former employer, a psychopathic gangster Rocco who enjoys sick violence and torture. Both the gangsters and the police believe Ugo has hidden $300,000 that should have gone to an American drug syndicate boss. Written by Markku Kuoppamäki

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Action | Crime | Thriller


Not Rated | See all certifications »






Release Date:

10 August 1972 (West Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Caliber 9 See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Many of the people who plays minor character like the men of Rocco Musco weren't actors but people really taken from the street. See more »


Rocco Musco: [in English version]
[last lines, grabbing Luca's hair]
Rocco Musco: You... shoot Ugo Piazza? Not you.
Rocco Musco: [slams Luca's head on the edge of the cabinet for the first time] You... shoot Ugo Piazza? Who gave you the right to do that?
Rocco Musco: [slams Luca's head on the edge of the cabinet for the second time] To shoot Ugo Piazza? Who gave you the right to kill a God?
Rocco Musco: [slams Luca's head on the edge of the cabinet for the third time] You... you've got to kneel Ugo Piazza, 'cause THAT MAN DESERVES OUR HONOR!
Rocco Musco: [...]
See more »


Followed by The Italian Connection (1972) See more »

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User Reviews

A high calibre of crime film indeed
4 February 2013 | by Red-BarracudaSee all my reviews

An ex-con attempts to go straight but cannot escape the influence of his old crime bosses. Underpinning everything is the matter of a missing $300,000 that he is under suspicion of stealing. The mob and the police want him to reveal all, while he protests his innocence.

Milan Calibre 9 is one of crime specialist director Fernando Di Leo's most famous movies. He was probably the best director in the Italian poliziotteschi and is responsible for several other classics of that sub-genre, such as The Boss and The Italian Connection. Like those, this one is also a fast paced, tough and violent flick with some excellently staged action scenes. The big shoot-out at the outdoor garden party stands out as an example of the latter. But mainly the story is driven more by interesting characters and a fairly complex plot with several twists and turns.

The Milan setting itself is used well, with a good sense of place. Unlike the other Italian thriller genre of the 70's, the giallo, the poliziotteschi were virtually all set in Italy itself. Many, like this one, featured the city in question in their title. They were more realistic than their more stylised gialli counterparts and I guess they connected with their audience in a slightly different way in that they provided thrills along with observations about contemporary crime concerns. Milan Calibre 9 like other Di Leo crime films has some such social commentary. The corruption in the justice system and the degradation of the mafia are subjects that are touched upon.

It benefits from a very strong cast. Mario Adorf is in his element as the sadistic gangster Rocco, he owns every scene he is in. Barbara Bouchet is as exquisite as always, she plays a night-club dancer who is introduced to us in a mouth-wateringly erotic dance routine. Lionel Standler is very convincing in the role of the sinister crime boss The Americano; while the two cops are played by reliable Italian genre film regulars Luigi Pistilli and Frank Wolff.

All in all, this is a quality action-thriller that remains relatively obscure. It's a very good example of what the Italian crime movie was all about.

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