Million Dollar Arm
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A biography of Italian bank robber Renato Vallanzasca starring Kim Rossi Stuart, from the director of Romanzo Criminale
“No offence, but don’t you read the papers?”, is the swaggering response of our criminal anti-hero to a woman who politely asks for the identity of her kidnapper. Well, unless you subscribed to the Corriere Della Serra in 1975, you might not be familiar with the name Renato Vallanzasca (Kim Rossi Stuart) either - though you will be with his blood-spattered narrative.
The story of a notorious outlaw in his native Italy during the 70s, this film owes a particular debt to Mesrine, the story of a notorious outlaw in his native France during the 70s - not least in the moustache and leather jacket department.
Stuart is no Vincent Cassell, of course, but he’s charismatic enough - and Angels Of Evil runs on the same breathless, punchy energy as director Michele Placido’s last crime saga, the equally derivative Romanzo Criminale. With recent films like Gomorrah having made an art of upending the entire Italian-American gangster tradition, though, so much prettily vacant sex and violence ultimately feels more quaint than shocking.
Unlikely to reshape the canon but an entertaining enough retro Italian gangster romp
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