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Author Topic: Special Cop In Action / Italia a mano armata (Marino Girolami, 1976)  (Read 64429 times)

IL COMMISSARIO

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Directed by Franco Martinelli (Marino Girolami)

Maurizio Merli, John Saxon

A gang of thugs have kidnapped a bus load of school children and hold them for ransom. Commissioner Betti is relentless in his pursuit to rescue the children and find out who was behind the kidnapping only to learn that this and recent crimes are tied to a wealthy business man Albertini (Saxon). Betti is framed and ultimately placed in prison where he targeted by numerous thugs he had placed there.

Another installment in the 'Commissioner Betti' films that include VIOLENT ROME (1975) and VIOLENT NAPLES (1976). Oddly, on this english dub he is called Commissioner Berni throughout the film, the character he plays in Lenzi's crime swan song, FROM CORLEONE TO BROOKLYN (1979). A scene of a newspaper confirms his name as Betti. Not sure how this mix up happened but it is confusing. Even Saxon's dubbing refers to him as Berni.

Merli delivers another solid performance as his usual cop with excessive means mentality. Considering he played nearly all his cops the same way, I'm surprised the filmmakers didn't just make a single series out of all his films. There is even a bit of foreshadowing in a dialog exchange for HIGHWAY RACER the following year in which Betti's partner says he should be a race car driver! We also get several funny Merli bitch slap/beatdowns and numerous shots of his tilted head and gritted teeth just before a fight.

Saxon is barely in this movie and again impresses as a villain who, by the end, is targeted for elimination on several occasions by the criminal organization he works for not to mention dodging Betti at every turn. Saxon is one of my favorite performers but I'm beginning to see that he is equally as good if not better as bad guys as he is at playing hard nosed cops. Considering the many later films he did playing policemen, it's funny seeing him playing gangsters in Italian polizio thrillers.

Girolami directs an unusually action packed film that may even have more thrillS than VIOLENT NAPLES. In fact, there are enough car chases, shoot outs and violence for two or three of these movies. Considering that many of these movies seldom contained more than one (if any) major set piece, instead relying on scenes of violence to hold attention, Girolami does an outstanding job. Either the man had a bigger budget or he was an expert at pulling off lots of flamboyant (for the time) stunts and explosions for little time and money. Really, this movie more resembles an American action film of the day with its near non-stop parade of well staged action sequences.

All the staples are here-- bank robberies, rub outs with those instantly recognizeable machine guns and so many car chases and a handful of explosions. Definitely the best poliziotteschi I've seen for its stunt work. The only misstep is the ending. It comes off as an afterthought as if it was thrown in at the last minute. A very enjoyable and exciting movie that needs a remastered DVD release along with the remainder of Merli's catalog.
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Paul

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I love this film -  it was one of the first Italian Crime films I saw - Tanzi bought the Hokushin Pre-Cert and I was given the labourious task of trying to eliminate the tape rot that his VHS was plagued with. Suffice to say, I only put it on to check the print and was hooked. This is a great film and one of the crime flicks I've seen the most. I'd love to see this get a proper DVD release.
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IL COMMISSARIO

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is there an italian dvd of this title?
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Stephen Grimes

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is there an italian dvd of this title?
No nothing,hopefully we'll see something soon.
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Paul

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Tanzi bought the Hokushin Pre-Cert .
I had this tape as well many moons ago and it's now worth a small fortune as it's currently the best looking version there is,wish i'd held on to it.

Tanzi's still got his in the unbroken, slip-case packaging.
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Stephen Grimes

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Tanzi's still got his in the unbroken, slip-case packaging.
Worth a fortune.
Mine was the cut up slipcase placed inside a small box,paid £15 for it from a sellers list through the Darkside classified ads a good 10 or so years back.
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vigilanteforce

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Fucking awesome film! Maurizio is in top form and the music score is just mind blowing!

Here is the Greek VHS cover:



This one is screaming for a DVD release!
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Paul

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Fucking awesome film! Maurizio is in top form and the music score is just mind blowing!

Here is the Greek VHS cover:



This one is screaming for a DVD release!

That's a great cover, mate.
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vigilanteforce

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Yes, I just think that artwork is from VIOLENT NAPLES and not SPECIAL COP- or am I wrong?

By the way, why does it say Enzo Girolami on the thread title?  :-*
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Paul

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By the way, why does it say Enzo Girolami on the thread title?  :-*

you're ringt, it's Marino. I shall change it...
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IL COMMISSARIO

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i already did and it's Marino. It's 6 am here and I'm trying to catch up on these things so forgive me for minor errors.
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i already did and it's Marino. It's 6 am here and I'm trying to catch up on these things so forgive me for minor errors.

We shall never forgive you, Commissario  :D

I should have picked up on before, too  :-\
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vigilanteforce

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I should have picked up on before, too  :-\

So start paying attention man! What kind of an administrator are you???  :-\  :-\

By the way, where did Companero go??
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IL COMMISSARIO

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did anybody else notice the dubbing referring to Merli as Berni?
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IL COMMISSARIO

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i already did and it's Marino. It's 6 am here and I'm trying to catch up on these things so forgive me for minor errors.

We shall never forgive you, Commissario  :D

I should have picked up on before, too  :-\

But I only made a MISTAKE..........you have heard of those, yes?  :P
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