Duccio Tessari – La morte risale a ieri sera AKA Death Occurred Last Night (1970)

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Robert Firsching in All Movie Guide:

Though not a giallo film in the strictest sense, this crime/revenge film merits attention by fans for its genre cast and an unusual approach to familiar themes. Raf Vallone plays anguished father Avanzio Berzaghi, whose 25-year old daughter Donatella has been kidnapped. Donatella has the mind of a toddler, and her beauty and agreeable naivete make her a perfect choice for Milan’s seedy prostitution racket. Frank Wolff is a dedicated Inspector with bad sinuses who shakes down a sleazy pimp and a desperate black prostitute (Beryl Cunningham of The Snake God), as well as visiting scores of local brothels for clues. Continue reading

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Ik-Joon Yang – Ddongpari AKA Breathless (2008) (HD)

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Quote:
A violent man learns compassion when he starts to care for a young woman in this independent crime drama. Song-hoon (Yang Ik-june) is a hired thug working for underworld kingpin Man-shik (Jeong Man-shik), whose money buys only so much of Song-hoon’s loyalty. Song-hoon has a violent streak and he’s not afraid to strike out against those who would turn against him or his boss, making him an enforcer to be reckoned with in the South Korean underworld. But Song-Hoon’s life begins to change when he meets Yeong-jae (Lee Hwan), Man-Shik’s newest underling. Yeong-jae has a teenage sister, Han Yeon-heui (Kim Gol-bi) who is as good-hearted as her brother is corrupt. Soon-hong and Yeon-heui get to know one another, and his affection for her brings out a compassionate side in his nature that he’s never been willing to acknowledge before. As Soon-hong falls deeper in love with Yeon-heui, he begins considering leaving his old life behind, which is more difficult than he ever imagined. Ddongpari (aka Breathless) was the first feature film from writer, producer and director Yang Ik-june, who also stars as Song-hoon. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi Continue reading

Ulrik Imtiaz Rolfsen – Izzat (2005)

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Izzat paints an image of Oslo, Norway’s capital, and its crime-environment in the mid-90’s. We follow Wasim and his involvement in Eastside Crew, the crime-gang mostly consisting of second-generation Pakistanis in Norway. What makes this movie extra special, is the realness of it all. Based on actual events, the film marks a flashy debut for Ulrik Imtiaz Rolfsen, the director. Continue reading

Daniel Geller & Dayna Goldfine – The Galapagos Affair: Satan Came to Eden (2013)

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“This overlong documentary lacks something in structure and focus – and I wanted to know a little more about the exact provenance of all of its home‑movie footage. But it has an extraordinary true story to tell, with hints of the Happy Valley murders in Kenya, and Paul Theroux’s novel The Mosquito Coast. In the 1930s, the Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador, famed for Darwin’s expedition, were thought of as the last great pristine territory, unspoiled by human habitation.

In Europe, some hardy souls – disenchanted by what the first world war had revealed about humanity – decided to settle there. A German doctor called Friedrich Ritter, who had a passion for Nietzsche, left his wife and went there with a married woman, Dore Strauch. A visiting American scientific party was fascinated by these modern-day Robinson Crusoes and effectively publicised their lives for the press back home, and Ritter was horrified when other would-be settlers turned up too. A stolid, bourgeois family, the Wittmers, arrived, and then a bizarre fantasist and adventuress who styled herself the “Baroness” Eloise von Wagner Bouquet. Continue reading

Jim Jarmusch – The Limits of Control [+Extras] (2009)

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The Limits of Control is the new movie from filmmaker Jim Jarmusch (Broken Flowers, Down by Law).
The film is set in the striking and varied landscapes of contemporary Spain (both urban and otherwise).
The location shoot there united the writer/director with acclaimed cinematographer Christopher Doyle
(In the Mood for Love, Paranoid Park).

Isaach De Bankolé stars in the lead role for Mr.
Jarmusch; this marks the duos fourth collaboration over nearly two decades, following Night on Earth,
Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai, and Coffee and Cigarettes.
The Limits of Control also features several other actors with whom Mr.
Jarmusch has previously worked, including Alex Descas, John Hurt, Youki Kudoh, Bill Murray, and Tilda Swinton;
and actors new to his films, including Hiam Abbass, Gael García Bernal,
Paz De La Huerta, Jean-François Stévenin, and Luis Tosar.

The Limits of Control is the story of a mysterious loner (played by Mr. De Bankolé),
a stranger, whose activities remain meticulously outside the law. He is in the process of completing a job,
yet he trusts no one, and his objectives are not initially divulged.

His journey, paradoxically both intently focused and dreamlike,
takes him not only across Spain but also through his own consciousness.
Continue reading

Henry Hathaway – Johnny Apollo (1940)

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The son of a jailed Wall Street broker turns to crime to pay for his father’s release.

synopsis

Tyrone Power plays the college-grad son of jailed-embezzler Edward Arnold. Power tries to find work, only to be turned away because of his father’s reputation. When he decides to use a phony name, he is still fired, because his ex-convict boss feels that Power is being unfair to his imprisoned father. If you can’t win for losing in a 1940 film, you turn to crime. Power hires on as the right-hand man of personable but deadly gangster Lloyd Nolan. Arnold, who has become a model convict, is disgusted that his son has turned to crime. He even refuses to have anything to do with his son when Power lands in the slammer himself. Through the intervention of Nolan’s moll Dorothy Lamour, a nightclub singer who has grown to love Power, Arnold realizes that his son is still a good guy underneath. Power proves as much by preventing a climactic jailbreak engineered by the homicidal Nolan. Continue reading

Yannis Economides – To Mikro Psari AKA Stratos (2014)

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Synopsis
By night, Stratos works in a bread factory but by day, he’s a professional hit man. He needs the cash to free Leonidas from prison because the latter once saved his life when he was behind bars. For Stratos, this is simply a question of honour. We’ve no idea how many people he’s already killed, but we do notice that he still has a conscience. He attentively looks after a neighbour’s child, eight-year-old Katharina, as well as her mother and an uncle. At last he has enough money for the prison break-out. But Leonidas is lured into a bloody trap, by his brother of all people, who disappears with the money. At the same time Stratos learns that little Katharina is in danger – both psychologically and physically. He must act, even if this means following one wrongdoing with another. Continue reading

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