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The Palermo Connection (1990)

Dimenticare Palermo (original title)
Carmine Bonavia wins election as the mayor of New York on a promise to legalize drugs. After the election, he marries Carrie and goes to his ancestral home of Sicily for their honeymoon. In... See full summary »


Francesco Rosi


Edmonde Charles-Roux (novel), Tonino Guerra (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
4 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Jim Belushi ... Carmine Bonavia (as James Belushi)
Mimi Rogers ... Carrie
Joss Ackland ... Uomo di Potere
Philippe Noiret ... Gianni Mucci
Vittorio Gassman ... Il Principe
Carolina Rosi
Harry Davis Harry Davis
Marco Leonardi
Ronald Yamamoto Ronald Yamamoto
Marino Masé
Vyto Ruginis ... Ted
Stefano Madia
Tiziana Stella Tiziana Stella
Luigi Laezza Luigi Laezza
Sal Borgese


Carmine Bonavia wins election as the mayor of New York on a promise to legalize drugs. After the election, he marries Carrie and goes to his ancestral home of Sicily for their honeymoon. In his hotel, he meets Il Principe, a Sicilian prince who has spent years confined to the hotel because he crossed the Mafia. Amid the beauties of Sicily Carmine discovers that men of power will stop at nothing to prevent the legalization of drugs, which threatens their business. Written by Peter Reiher

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




R | See all certifications »



Italy | France



Release Date:

14 February 1990 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

The Palermo Connection See more »


Box Office


ITL 15,000,000,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



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Did You Know?


Featured in The Filmmaker and the Labyrinth (2004) See more »

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User Reviews

See Palermo and Die
14 August 2004 | by sol1218See all my reviews

****SPOILERS***** "The Palermo Connection" starts off as a very interesting film about the corruption in New York City. Due to the influx of illegal drugs a young reform councilman tries to take the profit out of drugs that in the end costs him his life. Councilman Carmine Bonavia, James Belushi, is running for mayor of the city of New York and is far behind in the polls with the election just weeks away.

Trying to come up with a new issue that will jump-start his campaign Carmine comes up with the idea of legalizing drugs and thus taking the profit motive out of them. The Mafia who traffics in illegal drugs uses the drug profits to pay off and corrupt the local police and politicians to look the other way.

Getting married to Carrie, Mimi Rogers,who works on on his campaign for mayor Carmine plans to spend his and Carrie's honeymoon in Palermo Sicily the ancestral home of his parents. He also wants to see from there how his idea of drug legalization does for his chances of him getting elected. Unknown to Carmine the Mafia in both New York and Palermo are setting him up for a fall in order to stop him from taking away their drug profits if and when he gets elected mayor of NYC.

Hard hitting but admittedly slow moving film about the evils of illegal drugs and how their used to destroy physically as well as morally everything that they touch. We get to see how a courageous young big city activist is destroyed in trying to combat that evil.

Carmine's poll number start to dramatically shoot up with him being 11% ahead in the race and in no time at all he's a shoo-in to get elected mayor of the city of New York, this makes the nervous Mafia bosses go into action. Getting Carmine involved in the killing of a flower boy, which was really done by the Mafia,in a Palermo fish market the Mafia have him blackmailed by secretly photographing the entire event. The Mafia uses those photos to get him off and at the same time using them as leverage to keep Carmine in line in trying to have him drop the issue of drug legalization after he's elected mayor.

"The Palermo Connection" has it's good points about the cause of crime but is too slow and takes a lot of attention to really follow and understand the film. There's almost no action at all in the movie and there are times that it lags by putting in scenes that seem to have nothing at all to do with the story the film is telling it's audience. The mystery as well as sultry women who seems to be trying to split up Carmine and Carrie in Palermo by starting an affair with Carmine is one such example.

One thing you have to say for the movie is that it's about as honest as a film can get about the drug menace that's destroying almost ever major city in America, as well as all over the world. With the active participation of those law enforcement officials who are sworn to combat it.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
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