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Author Topic: Calibre 9 / Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)  (Read 28162 times)

IL COMMISSARIO

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MILAN CALIBRE 9- 1972 aka MILANO CALIBRO 9

Gastone Moschin, Barbara Bouchet, Mario Adorf, Frank Wolff, Luigi Pistilli, Phillipe Leroy, Lionel Stander

Someone has ripped off $300,000 from the Mikado Family and Ugo Piazza (Moschin) has just been released from prison. The Mikado's henchmen put pressure on Ugo believing he knows where the money is stashed. The police are also pressuring Ugo so as to finally put the Mikado's away for good. A double twist ending brings the film to an end.

A fitfully entertaining and extremely well shot movie from probably the most famous crime director/writer Fernando de Leo. There's enough twists here to fill a bag of pretzels. The first chapter in de Leo's "Milieu" trilogy is quite different from the polizio movies that would attack Italian movie houses after 1973s HIGH CRIME from Castellari. These along with another earlier and equally good thriller, ASSASSINATION (1967), are more noir-crime movies. Those that followed were more the DIRTY HARRY-DEATH WISH school.

Moschin (GODFATHER 2) is very good as Ugo and displays lots of emotion in a character he wouldn't normally play. You can really see his despair in his face even without going overboard when the Mikado's trail him and the police hassle him. Moschin would also be the bright spot along with Tomas Milian in Stelvio Massi's crime film EMERGENCY SQUAD where he played the gang leader against Milian's somewhat laid back but relentless cop.

Barbara Bouchet, from numerous giallos as well as one of the best of the original STAR TREK episodes, plays Ugo's girlfriend and is an exotic dancer here who has little to do besides look beautiful.

Mario Adorf from AND FOR A ROOF, A SKY FULL OF STARS delivers a dynamite performance as the psychotic gangster Rocco, the lead henchman of the Mikado's. The opening scene is worth the price of the DVD alone where Rocco and some of his cronies brutally torture three betrayers before tying them together inside a small cave then blowing them up! Adorf steals the movie in every scene he's in. He is also in the other 2 films in this trilogy.

Frank Wolff delivers the best performance I've yet seen him in as the police commissioner. He is almost unrecognizable with his facial hair shaved. His rally talks are high points of the film especially his beratement of his assistant Mercuri played by a very subdued Luigi Pistilli. His cruel jokes against Mercuri and his methods are very amusing although it would seem Mercuri has the right ideas and possesses the patience to pull them off. This must have been Wolff's final movie as it was shot in 1971 but not released until the following year. Wolff, as everyone here knows, killed himself in Rome in late 1971. Pistilli would also take his own life in 1996.

Phillipe Leroy is also good as Chino, a sympathetic underworld man who is hesitant at first to help his old friend Ugo but relents. There's a great conversation between Chino, Ugo and Chino's blind friend. "There are no Mafia in Milan. Only hoodlums..." Leroy would appear in several other crime movies including the sadistic BLOODY HAND OF THE LAW (1973) with Kinski and Lenzi's GANG WAR IN MILAN (1973).

This is the Raro Italian 2 disc set. The film is presented in Italian, Italian with removable English subs and the English dubbed version which is one of the best I have ever seen. The picture quality is gorgeous. There is a thank you before the film as Quentin Tarantino (among others) was somehow responsible for getting this released. QT even has a quote on the front--"The greatest Italian noir ever made".

The second disc is loaded with documentaries on the film itself, De Leo and the Italian poliziotteschi movies in general. Sadly, none of the extras have English subtitles. An amazing movie gets royal treatment in both presentation and extras. Highly recommended if you enjoy these kinds of movies, not just Italian crime films, but thrillers in general.
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Paul

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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #1 on: 06 Jul 2007 - 22:58 »

I love CALIBRE 9 - it's in my three or four favourite crime films and top ten Italian flicks. I never tire of watching it, though I've seen the incredible pre-credit sequence a hell of a lot more than I've seen the whole film. Luis Enríquez Bacalov's score is also one of my favourites.
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LANZETTA

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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #2 on: 09 Jul 2007 - 23:55 »

I finished watching this today for the first time and theres so much talky scenes and twists involved that i really need to watch it again.Its undoubtably class stuff   but it didn't leave quite the same impression i got after seeing THE BOSS first time round,apart from Bacalov soundtrack which is absolutely brilliant. 8)

One thing that did confuse though was how did Moschin manage to get in and out of the police headquarters with all that money(in the bag) intact,but as i said i need to rewatch?
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Fray G

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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #3 on: 16 Jul 2007 - 23:05 »

I came to this film back to front having been already familiar with the Osanna/Bacalov music for quite some time beforehand. In fact I was blissfully unaware it was soundtrack music at all until the Raro dvd was released and reviews of it appeared and I put 2+2 together. I've been curious ever since about just how much Bacalov wrote of this and how much is Osanna's own work. This album is pretty consistent with their other albums (it was their second lp), it does'nt seem out of place with the rest of their discography. I'm sure the answer lies somewhere in the extras disc of the dvd, do any of you speak italian and have watched the Bacalov interview?

Likewise, I wonder about the New Trolls collaboration on the Designated Victim.

As for the film itself, I still remember the first time I watched it and the spray of tea I hurled across the room in disbelief as the opening 5 minutes unfolded in front of me. Rarely does a film pack a gut punch like that, I was grinning from ear to ear through the rest of it.
I like to watch this one in italian with subs, I think it works pretty well. I usually pick language tracks on a film by film basis, this and Almost Human work great in italian.

I'm not so enthused about the Wolff/Pistilli scenes in this though. I've nowt against political statements in films and it's interesting to learn about the historic social problems of a foreign culture, and i've no probs with the actors involved, their both great. But the scenes just go on for too damn long and take me out of the film. I feel like there's a different movie shoehorned into the middle of this one, which is why ultimately I rate Manhunt and the Boss higher. I applaud Di Leo for his noble intentions and just wish he edited this stuff differently. A political Frank Wolff performance I thoroughly enjoyed was in Salvatore Giuliano, there should be a thread on this masterpiece!
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LANZETTA

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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #4 on: 17 Jul 2007 - 07:11 »

I'm not so enthused about the Wolff/Pistilli scenes in this though. I've nowt against political statements in films and it's interesting to learn about the historic social problems of a foreign culture, and i've no probs with the actors involved, their both great. But the scenes just go on for too damn long and take me out of the film. I feel like there's a different movie shoehorned into the middle of this one, which is why ultimately I rate Manhunt and the Boss higher. I applaud Di Leo for his noble intentions and just wish he edited this stuff differently. A political Frank Wolff performance I thoroughly enjoyed was in Salvatore Giuliano, there should be a thread on this masterpiece!

I'm kinda on the same wavelength about the Wolff/Pistilli scenes which did seem to drag down the movie but i'd like to take a 2nd look to see if i still feel the same.
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Stephen Grimes

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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #5 on: 10 Aug 2007 - 21:56 »

I've always liked Lionel Stander as the Mikado(Americano) in this,infact there was an old UK tape of this titled The Mikado Killers.
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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #6 on: 10 Aug 2007 - 22:24 »

I've always liked Lionel Stander as the Mikado(Americano) in this,infact there was an old UK tape of this titled The Mikado Killers.


Lionel Stander is Max from 'Hart to Hart' yes?

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Stephen Grimes

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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #7 on: 10 Aug 2007 - 22:28 »

Lionel Stander is Max from 'Hart to Hart' yes?
Yeah but we'll forget about that :-\,he'll always be the Mikado to me :-\

He was also in The Black hand(Le Mano nera) which is a mafia tale set in the early part of the century,good film though i haven't seen it since i sold my Cinehollywood tape a few years back-really must get a dvd-r of it soon.
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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #8 on: 10 Aug 2007 - 23:52 »

I've always liked Lionel Stander as the Mikado(Americano) in this,infact there was an old UK tape of this titled The Mikado Killers.

The old U.K. Mikado Killers tape is cut, especially during the excellent start sequence.
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vigilanteforce

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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #9 on: 10 Aug 2007 - 23:56 »

The old U.K. Mikado Killers tape is cut, especially during the excellent start sequence.

I have a Greek tape titled THE MIKADO KILLERS which is also cut so it must be sourced from that old UK tape. The way to go was the Cinehollywood tape which was uncut and letterboxed but I gave it to a friend after I got the Raro DVD.
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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #10 on: 11 Aug 2007 - 00:02 »

The old U.K. Mikado Killers tape is cut, especially during the excellent start sequence.

I have a Greek tape titled THE MIKADO KILLERS which is also cut so it must be sourced from that old UK tape. The way to go was the Cinehollywood tape which was uncut and letterboxed but I gave it to a friend after I got the Raro DVD.
i never managed to get a Cinehollywood pre-cert, i used to have a Dutch tape.
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Paul

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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #11 on: 11 Aug 2007 - 11:56 »

Lionel Stander is Max from 'Hart to Hart' yes?
Yeah but we'll forget about that :-\,he'll always be the Mikado to me :-\

He was also in The Black hand(Le Mano nera) which is a mafia tale set in the early part of the century,good film though i haven't seen it since i sold my Cinehollywood tape a few years back-really must get a dvd-r of it soon.

He'll always be Max in HART TO HART' to me - it was most amusing seeing him play villain in this, the first time I saw it.
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Stephen Grimes

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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #12 on: 11 Aug 2007 - 12:04 »

Someone has ripped off $300,000 from the Macotto Family
?  ?
Are you sure you don't mean the Mikado himself?
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Wostry

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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #13 on: 20 Nov 2007 - 19:19 »

This here, this is absolute perfection...

http://youtube.com/watch?v=wHz8r5kcEMg
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Re: Calibre 9/Milano calibro 9 (Fernando di Leo, 1972)
« Reply #14 on: 20 Nov 2007 - 19:22 »

sure is, has the best intro to an Italian crime film in my opinion :) :) :)
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