Syndicate Sadists/Review

From The Grindhouse Cinema Database

< Syndicate Sadists

Tomas Milian plays Rambo (no, not the Rambo we all know. But there is a connection. more on that later) Rambo enters Milan after being away for quite some time (It's never revealed what he's been up to, nor is his mysterious background ever brought up) and his first visit is to check up on an old friend, Pino Scalia (Mario Piave) and his family. Pino lets Rambo know about the homegrown task force that the town is producing thanks to the current gangland attacks. Though Rambo stops by the precinct and demonstrates how much of a badass he is, he still doesn't agree to become a lawman. But what he does agree to do is to help out Pino on a dangerous assignment. Which is to lure and apprehend some goons who work for mob-boss, Conti (played by Luciano Catenacci) Rambo catches the mobsters in spectacular fashion, but since Rambo isn't an officer, Pino receives the credit. Bitter and seeking revenge, Conti orders two things: 1) Make Pino look like he died in an accident. 2) Kidnap the son of a wealthy doctor for ransom...He succeeds on both.

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Now Rambo is asked one last time to wear a badge, but he refuses once again. Looks like he's gonna bring justice to the town and have his own revenge as a simple vigilante. But first, he'll include some assistance from another big-time mobster, and the guy who told Rambo he "should've never come back" named Paterno (Joseph Cotton) So, wait...Two bosses? And does that mean Rambo will be in the middle? You betcha.

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So as the movie winds down, we've got yet another one of those "Yojimbo/Fistful-Dollars" plots going on. But, thankfully, director Umberto Lenzi and the screenwriters already felt this scenario was a little played out by now, so they added a little twist late in the film which has the gangs NOT entirely wiping each other out. As well as finding out about Rambo's sneaky plan which has both gang-leaders in agreement to team-up to try and wipe out our hero. But still, the results have a "been-there-done-that" feeling for the viewer. Normally, I would just recommend this movie just for Lenzi and Milian completists, but in all fairness, Tomas Milian really comes close to making this one special. He has such a way of playing the archetype action character (i.e, the lethal loner) that his interpretation still feels fresh 30 years on. It also goes to show what an underrated talent he really is. So watch this one just for Milian alone (the awesome funk-theme music isn't too shabby either!).

Reviewed by Laydback

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