Highway Racer / Poliziotto Sprint (1977)

3.0 out of 5

Marco Palma, Maurizio Merli, is a rash hot headed cop with a yearning to be the police force's top driver. He gets his chance to prove himself to his doubting boss by agreeing to infiltrate a gang of bank robbers who elude the police at every turn due to their skilled driving.

There are two things unusual about this film. Firstly it's a Stelvio Massi film with lots of action and secondly Maurizio Merli's moustache seems to have taken a vacation. Maybe it's fee was too high for this picture but fret not it will return!

Massi films usually tend to centre around plot rather than action, but this is the exception to the rule with a pretty routine by the numbers Eurocrime plot. The action is the star here, courtesy of Bond stunt driver Remy Julienne and his team who create some truly breathtaking car chases, jumps, crashes and general mayhem amongst the Rome suburbs. There's a superb climax with an incredible two car leap across a chasm and a stunt man appears to get hit full on by a car at near full speed at one point!

Merli cited this as his favourite film and it clearly shows by his impassioned performance. Only slightly let down by it's by-the-numbers plot, this is however one of Massi's best films and should more than satisfy Eurocrime enthusiasts.

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