When a shipment of heroin disappears between Italy and New York, a small-time pimp in Milan is framed for the theft. Two professional hitmen are dispatched from New York to find him, but ... See full summary »
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... See full summary »
Fernando Di Leo
Tony, a mob loan collector, is dissatisfied with his station in life. Though he dreams of one day being rich, he is stuck with the dead-end job of beating up borrowers who fall behind in ... See full summary »
Lia and Tina are two beautiful girls who meet and realize that they have a lot in common. They are both young, beautiful and pissed off, so they decide to hitchhike their way to Rome to ... See full summary »
A man is arrested and condemned to five years in jail for robbery. After serving his term, he is out for revenge on the gang members he considers were to blame for his arrest. The prize for this deadly fight is a large cache of diamonds.
Fernando Di Leo
Though generally a tad overrated (neither Milano Calibro 9 nor Il Boss are the transgressive "masterpieces" some Italocinema fetishists want them to be), so-called "cult" director Fernando di Leo manages to strike some grippingly dissonant chords in Shoot First, Die Later, the original title being less sensationalistic than bone dry: The Rotten Cop. While most poliziotteschi are essentially feelgood movies, the degenerates and lowlifes getting what they justly deserve, this one marches to an entirely different drum. At its core a father-son story – the excellent Salvo Randone playing Pops to the opposite of leading beau Luc Merenda –, it's a cynical morality play about a model cop appropriately named Malacarne (literally meaning "bad meat") who feels perfectly comfortable with being on the payroll of the mafia until things go terribly awry: Unlike the cheap-thrills roller coaster violence of other Eurocrime movies, the stark brutality here comes across as callous, pitiless, not even nasty, but unpleasant through and through; actually, the two car chases, skillfully done by stunt coordinator Rémy Julienne, feel like a concession to the regular poliziotto crowd. In its acidly sarcastic Weltanschauung and the complete lack of redeeming qualities, Shoot First, Die Later is doubtless more akin to the cinema of Rosi, Damiani or Elio Petri than to the staccato over-the-top action of Castellari or Lenzi: A doom loop of human failings.
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