QT4: 5th Night: 70's Italian Crime Films... Tarantino lets loose with the brilliant Fernando Di Leo!!!
Here we go Night Five.... QT Quattro (the 4th
Quentin Tarantino Film Festival).... Italian 70’s
Crime Films (double feature) plus one American
Tonight was one of the highest anticipated nights for
me. I’ve long heard about the Italian Crime films....
I’ve heard many of the scores thanks to the world of
foreign Soundtrack collecting... of which, I’m very
adventurous.... But I have not had the films to
watch... but from their scores... they sounded like
very big... VERY BIG films...
When Quentin took the stage tonight, he was in a
mood to rile everyone up... I think he was a little
disappointed in the reception SUCCUBUS received...
and knew hands down that this night’s schedule was
going to have everyone in the house sitting in a
puddle of their own excited chilling piss... because he
was going to introduce us to a director by the name of
Well, that was my thought. As I’ve admitted in the
general realm of Italian 70’s Cinema... I’m a
complete void of information. So when Quentin
grabbed that mike like a doomed chicken and started
pounding it with a barrage of highly excitable
words... the audience responded.
“Alright, most of you know the Hong Kong world of
violent cinema, John Woo... Ringo Lam... All that
beautiful slo-mo.... birds flying.... stunning
choreography.... They made violence poetic but
brutal.. WELL, In ITALIAN CRIME FILMS... In the
films of Fernando DiLeo... There ain’t nothing pretty
about it. It’s just as violent... More so even... I mean
in these films their guys would come in this room
with machine guns and just begin shooting all of you
dead, and then they would begin blowing you up, and
then the flames would envelope you and then as the
flames begin to boil your eyeball there would be a
quick ZOOM to watch it burst........ (audience begins
howling in laughter) ..... You think I’m fucking
kidding... You think that’s a fucking joke, I’m not
fucking kidding... These movies will cut your heads
off and your bodies will just sit there spurting blood
and you won’t fucking care because... these movies
are that fucking good...”
“...In Italy they have a completely different take on
Film, because of the tradition of Opera. SO in Italy
when they kill... THEY KILL BIG, when they make
love.... THEY LOVE BIG, when they act.... THEY
ACT BIG. To them the idea of kids being influenced
by films... it’s like ‘Whaataya talkinbout... itsa a
moovie, whatz da matta you can no tell between a
movie and REEEality? Itsa just a fooking
Now... just so you know... I didn’t tape that
conversation... that’s memory... and I’m willing to bet
when I take a listen to the tapes that Quint has made...
I’m almost exactly on the letter. Tarantino was a
fireball up on that stage. You see... to Quentin... he
really really loves these films... and to him, he sees
these festivals as his way of... sort of getting the word
out about movies that most of you have... not
forgotten... that the whole world has forgotten.... that
we’re all so damn busy looking at what’s coming out
this weekend... and that we’re all so busy buying
those same 300 titles in different and newer formats...
that we completely don’t see all those films that the
world just missed. Films like MARCH OR DIE...
where.. because it came out the same weekend as
STAR WARS a long time ago.... NOONE SAW IT...
Well, now at least this theater full will know.... They
will obsess... they will ask and search... they will tell
friends and their friends... And when I tell all of you...
Well most of you will think this is just some damn
BAD MOVIE festival... but the ones of you out there
with movie going adventure seeking balls.... WELL...
You will find these films... invite friends over... watch
them... then go through the various actors and
directors and writers’ movies searching for other
good ones... and no matter how small that group of
truly adventurous filmgoers are.... the movies won’t
be lost... they will be known. Someone out there will
find a little niche sub genre and write a book.... hell,
make a film... and the influence might be passed on.
Damn I got off target, but there’s a reason folks... I’m
passionate about this stuff.... That is why I’m here...
I’m a movie sponge... I soak in cinema.... I’m the
BOUNTY of this festival... the quicker picker upper...
and Quentin is that guy spilling stuff all over the
place... And I’m picking it all up... and this night is a
night where that is a sheer joy.
Peter Blood in the AICN group didn’t come to this
night... When I first asked him why, he said, “Well, I
wasn’t familiar with any of the titles.”
THAT’S THE POINT!
I mean, when you see two Italian Crime titles like
SHOOT FIRST DIE LATER and WIPE OUT... and
you know that Quentin Tarantino wants to show them
and be associated with them.... You better fucking
believe you’re in for a night of PRIME A
That takes us to the first film of the night... SHOOT
FIRST, DIE LATER or... if you need to find it on
IMDB... it is known as “Poliziotto Ã¨ marcio, Il” and I might
add that it was quite some task to figure that out...
Sigh... Thank God for the ability to cross reference
multiple names in me noggin... sigh...
The less you know about this film... the better... It’s a
cop movie, that deals with corruption on the force,
Mafia influences, father son confrontations... In
Quentin’s introduction he stressed over and over
again how in our country... we romanticize the
Mafia... How we stress and emphasize the family
aspects... the loyalty... the togetherness... Well, in
Italy... where the MAFIA really is like a secondary
black government and terror unit.... where it isn’t
some imaginary evil thing.... That’s where Fernando
Di Leo is coming from in his films.... HE HATES
THE MAFIA.... and his films, at least the two we saw
tonight... they show how hypocritical they all are....
How they get you in with that whole... “We’re about
family” bullshit, and then if you are needed or proven
to be a threat or can make their lives easier by being
dead.... You are dead. Doesn’t matter who you are.
And this film shows that. There is no love here... this
is a raw nerve of a film. Ya know... on both of these
Italian films... your really do need to just track them
down by hook or by crook. If you go to IMDB on
this title.. you will find nothing really... there is no
video release... there is no DVD.... This is a film that
just barely exists.... If Quentin didn’t have a print...
and didn’t just show it, you wouldn’t know it existed.
BUT IT IS FANTASTIC!
It is brutal, dramatic and hard. If you’ve seen the
Seijun Suzuki films like BRANDED TO KILL or
TOKYO DRIFTER... If you liked those... well these
movies are more violent, more dramatic and just as
damn good if not better.
Some video company somewhere in this damn world
needs to begin releasing and hyping these long
I mean, in SHOOT FIRST DIE LATER there is a
Mafia attack in a warehouse where they come in with
big damn billyclubs and begin beating the living shit
out of these people for even contemplating going to
another supplier.... Their teeth are being knocked out,
cheek bones being broken in a compound manner...
Faces are stepped on, arms broken... It’s as brutal as
you can imagine... and when these poor wretched
souls can no longer move... when they are mere
inflated skin jobs... these men come in with machine
guns and blast away at their legs... leaving them
alive... barely... but they’ll never walk again ever.
When someone sitting with an unlit cigarette asks the
hero for a light... the hero grabs the man by his hair
and knees him flat into the face in the same sort of
vicious OH SHIT hurt that that cop felt in T2 when
Arnold shoves his head into the concrete pillar.
This was BRUTAL.
And it was just the handjob of the night. It was mere
foreplay compared to the second film... WIPE OUT.
As Quentin noted in his introduction... everywhere
else in the world, but the U.S.... this film is known
as... THE BOSS... and folks, this movie is as
hardcore as they come.
You know that description that Quentin gave in his
introduction to tonight that I wrote up above... ahem...
that’s here. I mean, HOLY SHIT! I still have the
bump on my head from it falling off the back of the
chair and hitting the floor, because my spurting
necked body was a fountain of gore over this movie.
First off... You have never seen HENRY SILVA as a
bigger badass.... I mean, he’s playing waaaay earlier
than Chow Yun Fat... that type of KILLER... This guy
is not to be fucked with.
And this Fernando DiLeo chap is a friggin crime film
genius. In this film nothing goes as expected. FOR
When one of the Mafia head’s daughter is kidnapped
and ransomed by a low level gang trying to gain
power... the gang guys decide to pull a gang bang on
this ‘sweet innocent daughter’ only to discover that
she’s an insatiable drug and alcohol loving nympho
that can wear all of them out and ask for thirds... She
is a sexual beast. You see... she is OF the Mob...
which means she’s a part of that whole dirty piece of
shit sub-human debauchery ridden world... She will
fuck anyone, be anyone’s whore... And if she’s being
sweet and nice the guys screwing her will slap her...
grab her by the face and slam her into the wall and
leave her dripping... And if she were to die... they
wouldn’t think 2 seconds about dumping her
delicious body into a flame chute.. so noone would
know she even existed.
AND THAT IS NOTHING. You thought in Film
Noir people double crossed? Heh... I thought I had
the whole formula down... I thought I understood
everyone having personal high ambition
motivations... NOPE... DiLeo here just began
whupping ass on the back and forth... who is with
who sort of thing.
Henry Silva? Like I said, ol Killer Kane has never
been this killer before. It doesn’t have the finesse of
the Hong Kong cinema... but it is like those Hong
Kong films are a dream of these films. Like they
never existed... and this is that bitter pill of reality
that gives you stomach cramps.
When this film ended... there was a lot of applause.. If
you go to IMDB on this film.... you will read a single
existing review, and the quote is, “The best and most
realistic Mafia film ever made.” Now... I love THE
GODFATHER films... I think GOODFELLAS is
brilliant.... Hell THE SICILIAN is damn fine... but
I’ve never seen a Mafia film this hard or brutal... and
from what I can find out it seems that DiLeo was
taking incidents right out of the headlines of the day
in Italy... and bringing them to life..
Now... the third film of the night was... I thought
supposed to be a change of pace. It’s a 70’s crime
film from America... starring Robert Culp and Bill
Cosby. The poster for the film made it out to be
kinda funny.... and ya know... I guess there could be
a kinda funny aspect... but this movie left me
Robert Culp directed this jewel... and he and Bill
Cosby are acting their asses off. Bill... Robert....
What the hell happened. Dudes, you guys were the
cat’s meow in this flick.
The movie is called HICKEY & BOGGS... and those
guys are Private Dicks... gone from the police forces
they used to serve... now on the ass end of the
profession. Laws are being passed to force them to
basically just serve summons and hunt down
scapegoats on bail bonds.
This isn’t the Phillip Marlowe universe anymore.
They hang in bars... check their answering services...
Bill has an ex-wife that doesn’t much care for him... a
kid he hardly ever sees.... Robert Culp lives in strip
clubs, with a glass teat pouring whiskey in his gullet...
going home to be satisfied with whores...
Robert Culp and Bill Cosby are not in a happy place.
They get a little gig... turns out to suck really bad for
This is what the LETHAL WEAPON movies weren’t
brave enough to be. The first film hinted in this
direction... but collapsed. As Quentin pointed out...
this was in the vein of THE LONG GOODBYE... the
script was by WALTER HILL.... his first produced
credit... Peckinpah picked up THE GETAWAY... and
well... you know the rest of the story. But this is a
lost film to my ears and eyes... I’d never seen or
heard of it.
Why the hell did Robert Culp direct ONE movie? I
mean, this was great. It had me in tears, laughing and
wincing in pain.
There are some images... things with Cosby that I will
not shake. A shot of a dissipated Robert Culp...
staring glassy eyed.. mesmerized but gone... a
vanished man... great face work by Culp in this. This
movie changes one’s opinion of these two.
This should be a movie that becomes very well
known... but it’s not on video... it is not on dvd or
laserdisc. This movie... like the others tonight, do not
Search my friends... watch your cable listings, search
on ebay and imdb... find these films... you will not
The next night will be ITALIAN ADVENTURE
EPICS.... till then, the second row at the Alamo will