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Caliber 9 (1972)

Milano calibro 9 (original title)
A former gangster is forced to resume his old lifestyle when his violent, jealous ex-colleagues and the police believe that he knows the location of a stolen cache of $300,000.

Director:

Fernando Di Leo

Writers:

Giorgio Scerbanenco (book), Fernando Di Leo (story) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Gastone Moschin ... Ugo Piazza
Barbara Bouchet ... Nelly Borden
Mario Adorf ... Rocco Musco
Frank Wolff ... Commissioner
Luigi Pistilli ... Mercuri / Fonzino
Ivo Garrani Ivo Garrani ... Don Vincenzo
Philippe Leroy ... Chino
Lionel Stander ... Americano / Mikado
Mario Novelli ... Pasquale Talarico
Giuseppe Castellano ... Nicola
Salvatore Arico Salvatore Arico ... Luca
Fernando Cerulli ... Hotel Clerk
Giulio Baraghini Giulio Baraghini ... Brigadier
Alessandro Tedeschi Alessandro Tedeschi ... Old Courier with Glasses
Franco Beltramme Franco Beltramme ... Hood
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Storyline

Just out of prison, ex-con Ugo Piazza meets his former employer, a psychopathic gangster Rocco who enjoys sick violence and torture. Both the gangsters and the police believe Ugo has hidden $300,000 that should have gone to an American drug syndicate boss. Written by Markku Kuoppamäki

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Action | Crime | Thriller

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Italy

Language:

Italian

Release Date:

10 August 1972 (West Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Caliber 9 See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

First part of Fernando Di Leo's "Milieu Trilogy" also including The Italian Connection (1972) and The Boss (1973). See more »

Quotes

Rocco Musco: [in English version]
[last lines, grabbing Luca's hair]
Rocco Musco: You... shoot Ugo Piazza? Not you.
Rocco Musco: [slams Luca's head on the edge of the cabinet for the first time] You... shoot Ugo Piazza? Who gave you the right to do that?
Rocco Musco: [slams Luca's head on the edge of the cabinet for the second time] To shoot Ugo Piazza? Who gave you the right to kill a God?
Rocco Musco: [slams Luca's head on the edge of the cabinet for the third time] You... you've got to kneel Ugo Piazza, 'cause THAT MAN DESERVES OUR HONOR!
Rocco Musco: [...]
See more »

Connections

Followed by The Italian Connection (1972) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The adventures of potato head
10 November 2017 | by BezenbySee all my reviews

Every criminal in Milan thinks that small time crook Ugo Piazza (Moschin) has stolen $300,000 from local crime lord the Mikado (Lional Stander), from Mikado's sadistic enforcer Rocco, who has already brutally tortured and killed three people involved with the cash, to Ugo's own girlfriend, exotic dancer Barbara Bouchet. Most people even believe that he had himself thrown into jail for three years until the heat died down, but Ugo denies everything.

That doesn't stop Rocco harassing the hell out of him, however. First he's taken to a scrapyard to have the crap beaten out of him, then Rocco and his goons turn up at Ugo crap hotel and destroy the place, but Ugo still denies taking the cash. Ugo goes to his old partner Phillip Leroy for help, but the man can only offer him money and advises him to go see the Mikado (although he does give Rocco a kicking for good measure).

The Mikado, knowing that if Ugo has the money, then there's no point in killing him, hires him as a runner and has him work for Rocco, but things go from bad to worse when a red-clad figure who has been following Ugo kills one of the goons, steals more cash, and sets in motion a series of events that ends in a bloodbath. I suppose this being 1972 they had to throw in a mysterious killer somewhere.

This all sounds like your usual Euro-crime movie, but there also an ongoing socio-political debate between two cops (An animated Frank Wolff and a subdued Luigi Pistilli) about the differences in the rich and the poor, and the North and the South of the country. This is reflected in the Mikado's speech about the old and new mafia, and how honour is not practised by the 'new' criminals, which is something that comes back to haunt the film's bleak ending.

Just about every actor involved here stands out. Phillip Leroy tries to live in peace but his hand is forced by events beyond his control – his weary resignation at what he has to do in the end is a highlight, Gastone Moschin is no oil painting but as the quiet, brooding lead plays a very good burned out criminal, but Mario Adorf blows them all of the screen as the manic 'moustache Pete' who may be violent and cruel, but still knows how to stick to the code of honour. His character is no fool either, as a tense, and mostly silent scene between Ugo and himself in a police station shows.

The soundtrack is a killer too! Although not my favourite Poliziotteschi film (for that is what they are called), it's probably my favourite Fernando De Leo film. Oh! Special mention to the set design of Barbara Bouchet's flat – amazing use of black and white.

This was one of two films released after Frank Wolff's suicide. His co- star here, Luigi Pistilli, would also go on to commit suicide after receiving bad reviews and having a public meltdown (much later, in 1996). On a happy note Phillip Leroy and Mario Adorf still walk the Earth!


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