Young, Violent, and Dangerous
Director - Romolo Guerrieri
Cast - Tomas Milian, Stefano Patrizi, Benjamin Lev
Country of Origin - Italy
Discs - 1
MSRP - $19.98
Distributor - Raro Video
Reviewer - Scott MacDonald
The Film (4/5)
Ever since Raro's DVD of Live Like a Cop, Die Like a Man ended up coming my way a few months back I have been positively crazy about Italian Poliziotteschi films. Due to my busy schedule I haven't been able to do as much digging as I'd like, but made sure to check out Lenzi's Rome Armed to the Teeth, and then Young, Violent, and Dangerous came in the mail.
I have to admit I am a sucker for a good title, and this a movie with a great freaking title. However, the cover is misleading, and my wife pointed out that Tomas Milian (who is on the cover) is not exactly what one would consider "young." Nonetheless, movies have had plenty of inappropriate titles before, and managed to be awesome, so that night I popped it in. First, to clarify, Milian is not the Young, Violent, and Dangerous of the title. He is cop trying to stop them, and second. This may be one of THEE most appropriate titles in film history.
Young, Violent, and Dangerous features a trio of upper middle class boys (Blondie, Joe, and Luis) who decide to add a little action in there lives. They get a gun, and decide to rob a gas station. Lea, the girlfriend of the least violent and dangerous of the 3 Luis decides to report them to the police led by an Inspector (Tomas Milian). She believes the gun is simply a toy and they are playing what amounts to a very dangerous game, and wants to stop them before they get in too deep. Unfortunately for her, and them the gun is not a toy and when the cops arrive at the gas station to intercept the boys a fire fight breaks out which leads to an epic game of cops and robbers through the streets of Milan with a mounting body count left in it's wake.
Honestly, I do not have a lot of experience with Poliziotteschi films, so I do not know where Young, Violent, and Dangerous stacks up within the classics of the genre. That being said I thought it was a badass good time, and was exploitation filmmaking at it's best. This film is pretty much one epic chase and gun fight right from the start.
The director Romolo Guerrieri really offered an excellent sense of pacing with his work on Young, Violent, and Dangerous. This film is definitely squarely in action film territory, but there is enough room to give the characters room to breath, and the plot to expand even just a little. It's these elements that help elevate the film from a typical run and gun to something really special. And like the best exploitation directors he knows what the audience truly wants is liberal helpings of sex and violence, and he offers them up in spades. The one major sex scene in the film is so mind-blowingly offensive it is almost a Rorschach test for the film as a whole. Either you get it's tongue in cheek sense of humor, or you give up and eject the disc.
The performances are also really interesting for the most part. Of course Tomas Milian (Django Kill) is fantastic as always. But the actors who play the boys, while maybe not the best actors in the world, definitely bring someting individually to their parts that help them to stand out. A notable mention should go to the actors who played Blondie and Giovanni (Stefano Patrizi and Benjamin Lev), they play a one-two punch of both a calculated, and an over the top sadist who realizes that they have respectively gotten in too deep, and just don't care. Max Delys who plays Luis, is obviously less over the top, but offers an interesting, slightly nuanced performance. This is a kid who is conflicted between doing what is right, and protecting his girlfriend, and sticking by his friends through to the end.
Overall, I will stop short of deeming Young, Violent, and Dangerous a masterpiece of the politzi genre. However, I will say it is a badass good time, and a film I know I will find myself revisiting many times in the future.
Raro has presented Young, Violent, and Dangerous in a very good 1:85:1 letterboxed transfer. The transfer is good for the most part with a few soft spots, mostly during exteriors which seem to relate more to the production than the remastering itself. The main issue with the transfer is the obvious fact that it is a letterboxed transfer when an enhanced transfer is now the norm. I certainly hope Raro fixes this if this goes to Blu.
Raro have included 2 audio options 2.0 Dolby Digital Mono tracks in both Italian and English. Both tracks are completely suitable, dialogue is audible completely throughout. I did not find myself volume shifting to hear. I did not notice any audio anomalies on the track like pops, cracks, or hissing.
There is not much in the way of extras on this disc. There is an interesting interview with director Romolo Guerrieri, a text based biography of the director, and a DVD-Rom essay about the film.
A fun, entertaining cops and robbers actioner done Italian style. This is a violent, gritty, exploitive film that hits the ground running, and doesn't let up until the end, and is a great way to kill a few hours. The DVD looks great, and although the extras are slim, this one is Highly Recommended!