Abuso di Potere (1972)

Translated as Abuse of Power and released internationally under the vastly improved title Shadows Unseen, this movie has an awesome poster and a great title that both say giallo, but the movie says poliziotteschi.

It all starts with a journalist who forks over a ton of cash for a ring, then leaves a bar with a mysterious woman before getting jumped and eventually shot. The cops assign Commissioner Luca Miceli (Frederick Stafford, Special KillersWerewolf Woman and, if he hadn’t been tied up making the movie Topaz, perhaps a James Bond) to solve the mystery.

Marilù Tolo plays Simona, who falls for Luca and gets caught between him and the underworld. She was also in Django Kill, Bava’s Roy Colt and Winchester Jack and My Dear Killer. Spoilers — her death is really upsetting, even for the man who orders it.

Everything from that moment on is as tense as it gets, with a car chase that’s absolutely white hot in its intensity. The downer ending is totally expected as well, as I don’t think any film ended happily in 1972.

Director Camillo Bazzoni didn’t make many movies (the last Steve Reeves movie I Live for Your Death, the Aldo Ray war movie Suicide Commandos and Those Who Kill are a few others), but this is filled with enough twists and turns to make it interesting. The slight giallo elements help get it there, as does the score by Riz Ortolani.

You can watch this on YouTube.

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