VIDEO ARCHIVES WEEK: Mr. Scarface (1976)

VIDEO ARCHIVES NOTES: This movie was discussed on the January 17, 2023 episode of the Video Archives podcast and can be found on their site here.

Also known as Rulers of the CityThe Big Boss and Blood and Bullets, this was directed by Fernando Di Leo. He started his career mainly being known for his writing, including A Fistful of DollarsFor a Few Dollars MoreMassacre TimeLive Like a Cop, Die Like a Man and so many more. He co-wrote it with Peter Berling, who was often in Kalus Kinski movies before writing a series of conspiracy novels about the Priory of Sion.

Tony (Henry Baer) works as a money collector for Cherico (Edmund Purdom) but he dreams of leaving his life of crime behind and settling on the beaches of Brazil. He decides to fast forward all the hard work of being a henchman by working with Rick (Al Cliver) and Napoli (Vittorio Caprioli) to rob the biggest boss of all, Scarface Manzari (Jack Palance).

It takes its time getting there, with Tony mostly cracking wise, cracking schools and, well, cracking smiles at the many ladies he sees during his days and nights of collecting blood money. He would have never even considered going after Scarface if he didn’t kill Cherico instead of repaying his debt. By the end, our hero has tracked his enemy — actually, his lifelong enemy, even if we don’t get that knowledge for some time — to a slaughterhouse where he wipes out the entire family.

Added bonus: Gisela Hahn (Devil HunterWhite Pop JesusDisco Fieber) is in the cast. And man, Jack Palance is so macho that he even makes a cigarette holder look manly. Like, the same kind of long effete cigarette holder that, let’s say, Cruella de Vil would use.

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