Combustible Celluloid
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With: Luc Merenda, James Mason, Irina Maleeva, Marino Masˇ, Daniele Dublino, Vittorio Caprioli, Valentina Cortese, Salvatore Billa, Marco Liofredi, Francesco Impeciati
Written by: Fernando Di Leo, Ernesto Gastaldi, Nicola Manzari, based on a story by Galliano Juso
Directed by: Fernando Di Leo
MPAA Rating: R
Language: Italian, with English subtitles
Running Time: 97
Date: 07/30/2013

Kidnap Syndicate (1975)

3 Stars (out of 4)

Taken Back

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Kidnap Syndicate is an incredibly harrowing movie that starts out a little like Kurosawa's High and Low (1963) but goes off in its own sinister direction. Widower Mario Colella (Luc Merenda) has given up racing and now runs a motorcycle shop while he raises his only son, Fabrizio (Marco Liofredi). Fabrizio is friends with a wealthy kid, Antonio (Francesco Impeciati). When Antonio is kidnapped, Fabrizio tries to help and winds up getting kidnapped too. It's up to Antonio's wealthy, jerk of a father (James Mason) to pay the ransom.

After a terrible turning point, Colella takes to his motorcycle and begins his own vengeful investigation. The showdown is exciting, but also has a bittersweet pall hanging over it; you probably won't be cheering during it.

Mason is dubbed into Italian. His unique, sonorous voice is available on an alternate English-language track, but the quality of it is far below the Italian track, and then you have the drawback of watching all the other actors dubbed into English.

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