High Crime / La polizia incrimina la legge assolve (1973)

5.0 out of 5

This solid gold classic from Enzo G. Castellari was largely responsible for kick-starting the poliziotteschi cycle and one can easily see why. It's absolute dynamite. Known to 80s UK video library patrons as The Marseilles Connection, it deals with the muscular efforts of Franco Nero's Vice-Commissioner Belli to rid the city of Genoa of large scale organised crime once and for all.

Castellari's film has the audacity to open with ten minute car chase and scarcely lets up from there on in, with slo-mo gundowns, car bombs and mob castrations, but it also possesses an emotional resonance matched by few of its would-be successors. Although action-packed, it's Nero's supremely frazzled performance that supplies much of the driving force of the movie, along with a career-best score from the Brothers De Angelis. A first class supporting cast includes James Whitmore, Duilio Del Prete and that Baba Yaga bombshell Ely Galleani.

Maurizio Merli header graphic courtesy of Paddy O'Neill of Foxyfide Graphics