Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBBB.
Italy, 1973. Euro International Film, Labrador Films. Screenplay by Lina Wertmuller. Cinematography by Giuseppe Rotunno. Produced by Romano Cardarelli. Music by Nino Rota, Carlo Savina. Production Design by Gianni Giovagnoni. Costume Design by Enrico Job. Film Editing by Franco Fraticelli. Cannes Film Festival 1973.
Excellent film by Lina Wertmuller, showing signs of the style she learned working under Fellini and the heatedly political storylines that came from her own brilliant mind. Giancarlo Giannini is superb as a buffoon from the country who is sent by a group of political anarchists to assassinate Mussolini during a political rally. Giannini’s friend was killed by fascists and he wants revenge, so he is stationed with a politically sympathetic prostitute (Mariangela Melato, who is also marvelous) in her labyrinthine brothel until he can carry out the deed. The temptations of ritzy living are a dangerous threat, however, especially when Giannini falls madly in love with both Melato and another girl in the house, confusing him about his emotional dedication to the murder of the dictator. Gorgeously shot, exquisitely scored, it’s one of Wertmuller’s best.