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L'avvocato delle donne (1997)
"Law & Order SVU" Italian Style
Back in the time when the definition "special victims unit" had not leaped from courtroom papers to the silver screen, an enterprising group of TV producers in Italy came up with the idea of dramatizing some of the intriguing cases that the renowned attorney and politician Tina Lagostena Bassi, a champion of abused women's rights in the male-dominated Italian courtrooms wrote about in her books.
The result is a gripping six episodes mini-series where a combative woman lawyer fights her good fight on behalf of women and children victims of abuses, trying to juggle her work and her personal life, fighting back her feelings for a charming prosecutor and trying to forget the ghosts haunting her from her childhood.
Lion of the Desert (1980)
A bad propaganda flick
This movie was made by order of the Libyan dictator Col. Muhammad al-Qadhafi to glorify the figure of Omar al-Mukhtar, leader of the local tribes which opposed the Italian colonial rule in the 1930s through guerrilla actions. Of course, being this a propagandist flick, there is very little historical truth to be found in it. Italians are depicted as violent and ruthless imperialists, killing mercilessly the libyan "patriots", together with their women and children.
It looks funny to me that, to impersonate the lead character, an American actor like Anthony Quinn was chosen. Probably the choice was made to lure Western distributors to buy the movie, but this was obviously not enough to make palatable to European audiences such a bad movie.
I watched this movie on TV in 1982 during a trip to Japan, because obviously it was never shown in Italian movie theaters. It is strange that none of the reviewers thought about the fact that, while blaming the Italian colonization for all its evils, regardless of the fact that the British, the French and the Portuguese did much worse against the natives on their colonies in Africa and in the Middle East, Libya still relies today on the infrastructures built there by the Italians more than 60 years ago.
If you can, avoid this movie. It's not worth the time to watch it, let alone the money to rent it. Leave it to Col. Qadhafi's friends and supporters, because it shows history as what they like to believe to be true.
Oggi a me... domani a te! (1968)
Typical Italian western...but with some interesting actors
This movie could be seen as one of the many "western" mushroomed out in Italy after the success of Sergio Leone's "A Fistful of Dollars". What makes it noteworthy is the presence of Bud Spencer, here at his debut with the heavy-handed character which will make him later famous with the "Trinità" series, and the casting in the role of "villain" Jess Elfego of one of the most outstanding Japanese actors, Tatsuya Nakadai, at the time almost unknown outside his country, well before arising to world fame with the leading role in Akira Kurosawa's "Kagemusha".
Erreur sur la personne (1996)
Life is not a play, but sometimes it looks alike...
This movie begins as the ordinary cop story, with officer Renard losing the use of his right ear after being shot in the head. A fragment of the bullet remains in his brain and cannot be removed, that makes his chief wary of him and reluctant to give him another assignment. He is appointed to follow the case of a very attractive girl who stole the wallets of several men. He finds her, but instead of arresting her he starts to follow her and finds out the reasons behind her financing the staging of Strindberg's "Miss Julie" with the money she stole. Very intriguing movie, although the end remains a bit too open...