Archive for Renzo Palmer

DANGER: DIABOLIK (1968) – The Dungeon Review!

Posted in Italy, movies with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 23, 2013 by goregirl

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The second film in my Saturday Night Bava Triple Feature was Danger: Diabolik! Another Bava film I had not visited for several years that desperately needed a re-watch. The adventures of master thief Diabolik and his smart, sassy assistant Eva Kant is an action-packed, sexy and fun-filled romp of the first order!

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Diabolik is based on an anti-hero from Italian comics created by Angela and Luciana Giussani in 1962. Diabolik is a mastermind thief who along with partner Eva Kant consistently eludes the Inspector and his men. The Minister of the Interior is getting hot under the collar over the whole business and restores the death penalty. When asked by the media about Diabolik he states the following: “I assure you that this individual whose very name reveals his antagonisms to the established values of our society will soon be brought to justice.” There are plenty of people who would like to see Diabolik’s head on a platter. The inspector attempts to lure and trap Diabolik with an acquisition he can not resist. But trapping this Diabolik character is no simple task. After some costly failures the Inspector agrees to a negotiation with wanted criminal Valmont. Valmont promises to deliver Diabolik in exchange for leniency.

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The film nicely preserves its illustrated source material; at least in the sense that the film maintains a comic book feel (I have never read any of the Diabolik comics). Danger: Diabolik is extraordinarily visual in its presentation. The story is pretty thin but it functions well enough as a catalyst to roll out some cool images. The sets in the film are nothing short of spectacular! Diabolik’s underground lair is one bodacious pad! It’s futuristic, fantastique! Diabolik and Eva shower in his and hers glass stalls with an appropriately placed piece of frosted glass to hide their bits and than have sex in their giant rotating bed full of money! Now this is the sort of criminal I want to be! Diabolik is cheeky, handsome, audacious and perhaps a touch anarchistic. His schemes are hilariously elaborate and he is always at least one step ahead of the law. He is also quick on the fly; at one point in the film using a catapult when cornered on a rooftop. There is nothing this guy can’t do! But behind every great man is a seriously foxy, intelligent and multi-talented woman. Stylish Eva Kant is Diabolik’s dedicated partner in crime; she is a woman who knows how to get a job done. John Philip Law (Diabolik) and Marisa Mell (Eva Kant) make an attractive couple and have great chemistry together.

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The supporting cast provides plenty of laughs. I especially enjoyed Michel Piccoli’s performance as the oft outsmarted Inspector Ginko as well as Terry Thomas who plays the Minister of the Interior/Minister of Finance both positions of which he is made a fool of by Diabolik. The lengths that Inspector Ginko goes to in his attempts to capture Diabolik are as outrageous as the schemes Diabolik comes up with to foil his plans.

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Danger: Diabolik is a striking film and one of Bava’s most visually impressive. A funny, action-packed visceral delight and a crapload of fun! Danger: Diabolik is highly recommended!

A few more pics for your viewing pleasure…

danger diabolik14Diabolik’s spectacular underground lair.

danger diabolik16His and hers showers.

danger diabolik2Whoever said money doesn’t buy happiness has clearly never had sex in a bed full of money.

danger diabolik5One of Valmont’s clubs.

danger diabolik8Eva wants this necklace; and she is going to get it.

danger diabolik9Valmont’s lady friend. Being insulted makes her giggle “Dry out stupid!”

danger diabolik11The amazing Spyrograph picture maker. Is this Barbarella?

danger diabolik10The amazing Spyrograph picture maker eventually comes up with a likeness of Eva Kant.

Dungeon Rating: 4.5/5

Directed By: Mario Bava

Starring: John Philip Law, Marisa Mell, Michel Piccoli, Adolfo Celi, Claudio Gora, Mario Donen, Renzo Palmer, Caterina Boratto, Lucia Modugno, Annie Gorassini

THE CYNIC, THE RAT AND THE FIST (1977) – The Dungeon Review!

Posted in Italy, movies with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 5, 2013 by goregirl

The Cynic, The Rat and The Fist, among other Umberto Lenzi non-horror titles has been on my to see list for quite a while. Apparently the film is a sequel to Rome Armed to the Teeth, which I have not seen, but I sure the hell will be making a priority now! I like a lot of Lenzi’s 70s stuff so I was pretty psyched about this Eurocrime entry. The Cynic, The Rat and The Fist is an ass-kicking, fast-paced, action-packed crime thriller full of macho male bravado; 70s style! There is a crazy amount of beatings in this film! There are beatings and then more beatings. There is some shootings and torture too! Three brutal dudes each with their own unique modus operandi; and the cop character is the one called “The Fist“! The Cynic, the Rat and The Fist is one of the most entertaining Eurocrime flicks I’ve seen yet!

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Detective Leonardo Tanzi is on sabbatical when Luigi “The Chinaman” Maietto escapes from prison. It was Tanzi’s testimony that landed “The Chinaman” in the slammer. Maietto is not out of prison long before Tanzi is shot. Tanzi was hit in the shoulder but the police tell the media that Tanzi died from his gun wound. Tanzi intends on going undercover and unleashing his own special kind of justice.

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Detective Leonardo Tanzi is retired or on vacation or something, I am not sure it is ever quite explained. In any case, Tanzi is still involved with the police department. His superior suggests he leave town for a while until things “cool down“. Of course Tanzi has no intention of leaving town. Needless to say, he is making all kinds of trouble and beating the snot out of guys right, left and center. He is a cop that is more than happy to bend the rules! There is no doubt in my mind whatsoever that Leonardo Tanzi represents “The Fist” in this story. He pummels a record amount of guys! Luigi “The Chinaman” Maietto is a small time crook but he is looking to get in on the big deal. He has a reputation for being efficient, brutal and not ratting out his cohorts. “The Chinaman” gets a visit from big crime boss Frank Di Maggio and the two make a deal. Strength in numbers man! It is hard to say whether or not Maietto is “The Rat” or “The Cynic“. I am going with “The Cynic” for this guy; he was definitely cynical (but he is also a bit of a rat). Finally we have Frank Di Maggio who has the least amount of screen time of the trio. Too bad, this guy is a treat! He has a penchant for torture and letting his two big dogs maul his victims to death! Three strong personalities made for some compelling and entertaining viewing!

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Leonardo Tanzi is sweetly 70s with his classic stache, the poses, and the rocking ensembles. Maurizio Merli plays the cop with a serious grudge to the tee. Luigi “The Chinaman” Maietto made me laugh often with his smart-ass come backs but does he really have enough clout to take over Rome’s criminal underworld? Tomas Milian is perfect as the cynical and fearless criminal, I always enjoy Milian’s nasty characters and here he steals every scene he is in! I would have liked to have seen more Frank Di Maggio. As mentioned previously, Di Maggio does not get much screen time really. He is a consummate professional and only mildly psychotic; I am not at all convinced that he was a bigger rat than “The Chinaman” but cynicism wasn’t really his thing, so I have to give him “The Rat” moniker. John Saxon is as great as ever and completely convinces as Di Maggio! Umberto Lenzi does a nice job with the photography and the copious fight scenes are all pretty well choreographed as far as I was concerned. It has a bullet pace and a ridiculous amount of action sequences. The violence is not overly graphic but there is an absolute shitload of it! Kicking, punching, slapping, shooting, leg-breaking, maulings; you name it! The language is largely bombastic but that is all part of the fun! The Cynic, The Rat and The Fist also has a great score from Franco Micalizzi that I hope to add to my collection! There is only one scene that overstays its welcome just a little. Tanzi and an elderly surveillance/gadget expert go all James Bond to get into a building to disarm the security system. It wasn’t a bad scene by any means, it just felt a little longer than necessary and the fact it is crammed in between loads of action sequences does not help.

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The Cynic, The Rat and The Fist is an exciting, violent Eurocrime flick with top notch performances, an insane amount of action and a great score. One of my favourite Eurocrime flicks yet!! Highly recommended!

Dungeon Rating: 4/5

Directed By: Umberto Lenzi

Starring: Maurizio Merli, John Saxon, Tomas Milian, Renzo Palmer, Gabriella Lepori, Claudio Undari, Bruno Corazzari, Marco Guglielmi, Gabriella Giorgelli, Guido Alberti, Aldo Massasso, Brigitte Petronio, Gianni Musy, Gianfilippo Carcano, Dante Cleri