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: ITALIAN CRIME FILMS: An Overview & Reviews  ( 108076 )
Arizona Colt
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« #255 : December 10, 2010, 12:10:13 AM »

Ask Chris Alexander, head editor of FANGORIA.
He sent a mass message to all of his email pals "begging" for money to fund a project.
Last I checked he was using Kickstarter to fund that same project that presumably will have the magazine's name over the title.

All I'm saying is there is nothing low about it.
Even the big guys (compared to us) use it.

Believe me, I am paying attention. There's nothing in your above paragraph that denotes Chris Alexander as one of the "Big Guys", and no, Fangoria isn't a MAJOR MOVIE STUDIO, it's a HORROR MAGAZINE who dabbled in a few direct to video horror movies back in the early 90s and they went nowhere. I don't read them anymore so if they're doing movies again, bully for them, but they are not the "Big Guys" when it comes to producing MOVIES which is what we were talking about. Apparently you are not paying attention to what you yourself are typing.

If you've seen "A lot more of them", please enlighten us as to what they are, or better yet, DON'T, because your opinion will change a month from now if the topic comes up with someone else and they have some DVD-R's you wish to acquire. You can't even recall but a few and have ODDLY confused some titles you displayed a liking to barely a year ago. It's extremely difficult to take anything you say seriously when one minute you like a movie and then the next minute you've got a pompous attitude about it.

You sent me a PM on the third of December asking if anything had changed or if the "Usual suspects were still assholes" and the only thing that has changed is your "political motives" towards a handful of flicks and your sudden disdain for them. So from here on out, any opinion I read from you that changes a month or so from when you initially proclaim it, I will just assume there's a coveted DVD-R you're after.



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« #256 : December 10, 2010, 12:57:25 AM »

Okay, here's some of your inconsistencies and bewildering statements regarding some of your "opinions". Below is your statement regarding THE BOSS from another site and you reference in the first sentence, "NOT BETTER THAN THE FIRST TWO IN THE TRILOGY"

THE BOSS

Not better than the first two in the trilogy. Oh well.
My favorite scene is the beginning where Silva blows up a bunch of, embarassingly obvious, mannequins with a trusty grenade launcher. After that the film becomes an interesting, but overly talky crime movie.


Now, here's your statement from a page or two back regarding MILAN CALIBER 9....

MILAN CALIBRE 9 I couldn't finish to be honest.
MANHUNT, I've always liked. The "one man against the world" concept is one I always enjoy and this is a great example of it.
The final climax in the dump is a little sketchy because the stuff with the crane doesn't really work (almost as if they didn't get much coverage that day) but it hardly hinders the rest of the movie.


So which is it? HAVE YOU SEEN THE DAMN MOVIE, OR HAVEN'T YOU?????

Another oddball comment is this remark regarding CYNIC, RAT, FIST from another site....

I think I prefer this one to ROME, ARMED TO THE TEETH. It's more jokey and the final confrontation is handled better (the Hunchback "getting it" in the back at the end of ROME is kind of a cop out).
The only thing wrong with this entry is the fifteen minute segment where it becomes a heist picture.
That scene came totally out of left field.


And this one from here....

I have not changed my opinion of Cynic and Teeth (although I like the alternate cut Assualt with a Deadly Weapon better). It's the other Merli films that I don't care for all that much. It has been so long that I've seen any of them that I can't recall all the titles save for some of the more popular ones like Violent Naples and the other two of the "trilogy". I just seem to feel that those 3 have been sold wrong to me. They said they were action fests but had little action in it. Naples and its companion pieces, always seem to turn into political intrigue/conspiracy movies or films that don't center around the exploits of Merli the policeman (then again, save for some of the violent set pieces, I don't recall much from them and could be wrong about the details of the subplots).

So which is it? DO YOU LIKE THE DAMN MOVIE, OR DON'T YOU?

This is from you a page or two back.....

I'm with Titoli, I've seen about two dozen of these things (most being "the best the genre has to offer") and only Di Leo's MANHUNT can be described as a great movie.
The Merli films can be fun, when not bogged down by talky segments or politics, but overall they're unsubstantial fare.

Maybe "unsubstantial" was the wrong word but I don't think they are on par with the other genres the Italians were putting out during that time.
The Merli movies, for me, are as I said they are. Bogged down by a bunch of stuff that gets in the way of the action. The Merli films should be escapist fun but they always seem to turn into something else. At least the ones I've seen.


OKAY, THAT'S FINE AND ALL, BUT THERE'S NO POLITICAL BOGGING IN EITHER OF THOSE MERLI MOVIES YOU GUSH OVER BEFORE, BUT SLIGHT AFTER....

I must admit, though, you were pretty consistent with the likes of REVOLVER, the LVC crime flicks, CONTRABAND and ALMOST HUMAN, but since Titoli has stated his distaste for it (as per his opinion of the Merli films that now magically matches your own), you're likely to despise it now as well.


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« #257 : December 10, 2010, 01:45:53 AM »

A quick Merli guide off the top of my head with the "Political Bogging" you mention specified where available.

VIOLENT ROME 1975--Merli plays Betti, a cop dealing with muggers, the mob and bank robberies who eventually sides with Richard Conte and his vigilante hit squad to sweep scum off the street after hours. His first Calabresi styled role and no POLITICAL BOGGING, BUT HAS A LOT OF ACTION.

FEAR IN THE CITY 1976--Sequel to LEFT HAND OF THE LAW with Leonard Mann. Merli plays Murri who revenges for the death of his family at the hands of a crime boss recently let out of prison who is knocking off the informers that put him in prison. Calabresi again and no POLITICAL BOGGING, BUT QUITE A BIT OF ACTION.

SPECIAL COP IN ACTION 1976--Merli is Betti who goes after a gang of crooks that have hijacked a busload of children. Meanwhile, gang activity continues and Betti kills a big Mobsters subordinate and ends up going to prison over it and has to deal with a bunch of crooks he put in there. Calabresi again, LOTS OF ACTION & NO POLITICAL BOGGING.

VIOLENT NAPLES 1976--Merli is Betti sent to Naples to where he uses his excessive force tactics to bust up money protection rackets, sociopaths on a murder spree and the Mob. Merli is playing Calabresi again. LOTS OF ACTION, NO POLITICAL BOGGING.

CYNIC, RAT, FIST 1977--Tanzi is pursued by 'The Chinaman' whom he put in prison. He fakes his death, then goes after Chinaman in secret and eventually sets Chinaman against Dimaggio, a big time crime boss. More Calabresi from Merli and LOTS OF ACTION, NO POLITICAL BOGGING.

ROME ARMED TO THE TEETH 1977--Very little plot, just LOTS OF ACTION WITH NO POLITICAL BOGGING as Tanzi goes after The Hunchback and his gang, another drug dealing rapist played by Ivan Rassimov and a youth gang of thugs. One of the most famous of these movies bar none and probably Merli's finest Calabresi impersonation.

HIGHWAY RACER 1977--Merli shaves the mustache and plays a fun loving speed racer cop who smiles and jokes a lot out to stop a race driving criminal and his gang. LOTS OF ACTION, CAR CHASES, CRASHES, EXPLOSIONS, BUT No POLITICAL BOGGING IN SIGHT.

FEARLESS FUZZ 1977--Merli is 'The Fox' a private detective who is sent to Austria to find a missing girl and uncovers a prostitution ring and conspiracy headed up by Joan Collins who sheds her clothes on two occasions. A BIT OF COMEDY, MERLI GETS HIS ASS KICKED FOR A CHANGE, A SMALL DOSE OF ACTION AND A WEE BIT OF POLITICAL BOGGING.

CONVOY BUSTERS 1978--Merli is Olmi, who after solving a double murder, exposing corruption within the law and accidentally killing an innocent citizen, takes a break in a small seaside town where he inadvertently uncovers a gun smuggling ring. A BIT OF ACTION, VERY SLOW, NOT MUCH POLITICAL BOGGING. Merli is once more Calabresi in this movie I don't care much for.

FROM CORLEONE TO BROOKLYN 1979--Merli is Berni assigned to get an assassin of a Sicilian mobster from Italy to NY to testify against the Mob boss that hired him now residing in Brooklyn. The trick is to make it to America alive with his key witness. LOTS OF ACTION, NO POLITICAL BOGGING.

HUNTED CITY 1979--Merli is Ferro who tries to solve a series of shootings involving wealthy land owners. Linked to a former mobster, Ferro sides with an elder Mafioso to try and solve the mystery. A BIT OF ACTION, A LOT OF POLITICAL BOGGING.

THE REBEL 1980--Merli is Rossi, a retired cop who gets back in the game to solve an international conspiracy regarding assassinations of wealthy entrepreneurs. A bit of action, very different location, A LOT OF POLITICAL BOGGING.



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« #258 : December 19, 2010, 04:19:42 PM »

The Violent Professionals (1973) This is famous for the car chases. And rightly so. They make the movie worth watching in spite of the rather muddled plot. Actually the last chase is very well dramatically inserted in the movie and well above the usual amateurishness of the screenplay and of the awful dialogues. 6\10


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« #259 : December 19, 2010, 04:26:04 PM »

Without Trace (A tutte le auto della polizia...) (1975) This is not a poliziottesco but a solid police procedural based on a novel, with the added value of many young girls showing lots of skin. Some dialogues are annoying and the finale is rather stupid, but Salerno and the girls make it a good 7\10.


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« #260 : December 28, 2010, 11:51:33 AM »

Napoli si ribella (1977) Tolerable flick mostly for good action scenes, but of little interest otherwise. 6\10


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« #261 : December 28, 2010, 12:01:44 PM »

Gambling City (1975) A gangster movie with an awful, intruding melodrama not so "sub" plot. An interesting premise (a card cheater career) completely badly wasted. Only Salerno's performance saves it from total dullness. 4\10


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« #262 : December 29, 2010, 01:24:46 AM »

Ransom! Police Is Watching (The Great Kidnapping)(1973) Well, this is better than expected, quite in the line of La polizia ringrazia: not a real poliziottesco (there is little action) but a reflection on how to deal with kidnapping (that was a very common crime in the '70's in Italy). Salerno is good as usual but given an awful make-up. The Cipriani's score is in the Morricone's mould. 6\10


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« #263 : December 29, 2010, 04:04:14 AM »

Crimebusters (1976) This is so over the top that made me laugh a couple of times, especially in the rather violent action scenes. These are the reason for watching it, I think, the plot being so absurd and full of holes (the Emiliano actor in the Trinity movies apparently knows always where to find Silva) that you don't care in the least about it. The De Angelis brothers score is annoying, rarely appropriated to the scenes or, maybe, too much. A Keystone cops or Tex Avery cartoon movie. 6\10


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« #264 : December 29, 2010, 01:18:49 PM »

Double Game (1977) Only good thing of the movie is Annarita Grapputo, unfortunately not showing much. During the vision I thought mostly about something else, couldn't have cared less about what was happening plotwise. No good action scenes. Score barely notable. 4\10 


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« #265 : December 31, 2010, 03:28:00 PM »

Emergency Squad (1974) As usual Sacchetti's story is quintessential "you've seen it all before", you can tell what's going to happen next. Add to that ludicrous scenes like the hippies (?) pad or those including dialogues between Milian and his sister in law which make your skin cringe because of their mawkishness  and you have very little to be happy about. Still it has 3 major actors like Milian, Moschin (but you never know what his character is about: he is dubbed as il Marsigliese" but he doesn't affect a french pronounce) and Carotenuto (totally miscast, though, as Milian's pard) and the final scene is effective: I would like to know if it is original. So I give it 6\10.
The inteview with Massi included in the dvd is depressing.


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« #266 : December 31, 2010, 08:19:39 PM »

The Violent Professionals (1973) This is famous for the car chases. And rightly so. They make the movie worth watching in spite of the rather muddled plot. Actually the last chase is very well dramatically inserted in the movie and well above the usual amateurishness of the screenplay and of the awful dialogues. 6\10

This was decent enough. The car chase scene was recycled in a few other movies.


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« #267 : December 31, 2010, 08:21:38 PM »

Without Trace (A tutte le auto della polizia...) (1975) This is not a poliziottesco but a solid police procedural based on a novel, with the added value of many young girls showing lots of skin. Some dialogues are annoying and the finale is rather stupid, but Salerno and the girls make it a good 7\10.

This was a really good Giallo style police thriller. It reminded me a lot of WHAT HAVE THEY DONE TO YOUR DAUGHTERS? by Dallamano.


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« #268 : December 31, 2010, 08:23:36 PM »

Napoli si ribella (1977) Tolerable flick mostly for good action scenes, but of little interest otherwise. 6\10

I thought this was pretty much crap save for the score and the dubbed dialog from Cannavale.


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« #269 : December 31, 2010, 08:26:02 PM »

Gambling City (1975) A gangster movie with an awful, intruding melodrama not so "sub" plot. An interesting premise (a card cheater career) completely badly wasted. Only Salerno's performance saves it from total dullness. 4\10

I never finished this one. It's "up" there with NICK THE STING (with Merenda) and LOADED GUN (with Andress and Strode) as pretty much non interesting. The Hong Kong gambling gangster movies (which originated in 1972 with Shaw Brothers THE CASINO) were much better at this sort of storyline in my view.


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