Friday, September 5, 2014

Milano Calibro 9 (1972)

AKA: Caliber 9

Director: Fernando Di Leo

Writers: Fernando Di Leo, Giorgio Scerbanenco

Composers: Luis Bacalov, Osanna

Starring: Gastone Moschin, Barbara Bouchet, Mario Adorf, Frank Wolff, Luigi Pistilli, Ivo Garrani, Philippe Leroy, Lionel Stander, Mario Novelli, Giuseppe Castellano, Salvatore Arico, Fernando cerulli, Giulio Baraghini

More info: IMDb

Plot: 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.

My rating: 9/10

Will I watch it again? Yes.

This is hands down my favorite 70s Italian crime picture.  I've seen it three times now over the past dozen years and it just gets better and better.  Gastone Moschin (as Ugo Piazza) looks like Jason Statham's pop and he kicks ass just as hard.  Mario Adorf (as Rocco) plays it lighter than usual but he's also a man that means fucking business.  The camera shots are refreshing, the music is groovy and takes us where we need to go.  Di Leo doesn't pull any punches and he takes on a wild ride that you'll wonder what the destination is right up until the last few seconds and then it's too late.  The ending is raw.  It's the shovel to the face when all you see is ice cream.  It's out of nowhere and so-and-so's reaction is hardcore and respectable.  If there's one Eurocrime or Poliziotteschi (Italian crime film) picture you ever see, it needs to be this one.  Based on this film alone I ponied up the dough last year to get the Blu-ray box set of the Fernando Di Leo Crime Collection vol 1.  It's got three other films (all reviewed here) and lots of extras.  The transfers look amazing.  The extras on this film are more extensive than the other (but all of them are great).  They include a half hour featurette on the film with interviews with Di Leo et al, a 38 minute interview with Di Leo about his crime films, a 26 minute featurette on the crime novels of Giorgio Scerbanenco and the theatrical trailer for the film. That's a lot.  Thanks, Raro Video!!!

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