4 user 5 critic

Atrocious Tales of Love and Death (1979)

Giallo napoletano (original title)
A mandolin professor, reduced to playing the itinerant player, sees his feeble gains wasted at the game by his father.


Sergio Corbucci


Giuseppe Catalano, Sabatino Ciuffini (screenplay) | 2 more credits »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Marcello Mastroianni ... Raffaele Capece
Ornella Muti ... Lucia
Michel Piccoli ... Victor Navarro
Renato Pozzetto ... Inspector Voghera
Zeudi Araya Cristaldi ... Elizabeth Hover (as Zeudi Araya)
Capucine ... Sister Angela
Peppino De Filippo ... Raffaele's Father
Peppe Barra Peppe Barra ... Giardino (as Giuseppe Barra)
Franco Javarone Franco Javarone ... Bugsy Sella
Gennarino Palumbo Gennarino Palumbo ... Suonatore ambulante (as Gennaro Palumbo)
Carlo Taranto Carlo Taranto
Natale Tulli Natale Tulli ... Alfie the Hood
Elena Fiore ... Donna Filomena
Dino Curcio Dino Curcio ... (as Armando Curcio)
Salvatore Furnari ... Agostino Ampolla


A mandolin professor, reduced to playing the itinerant player, sees his feeble gains wasted at the game by his father.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Mystery


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Did You Know?


Originally planned to be a sequel of The Payoff (1978), with Marcello Mastroianni replacing Nino Manfredi in the role of Sasà Jovine. See more »


Featured in Marcello Mastroianni: I Remember (1997) See more »

User Reviews

Mandolini murder mystery
3 February 2004 | by Chip_douglasSee all my reviews

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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Release Date:

12 April 1979 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Atos Proibidos de Amor E Vingança See more »

Filming Locations:

Naples, Campania, Italy

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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