Uomini Si Nasce Poliziotti Si Muore (1976)
Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.
Renegade anti-crime squad cops Alfredo (Marc Porel) and Antonio (Ray Lovelock) deliver justice down the barrels of their revolvers in this violent poliziottecschi from director Ruggero Deodato (Cannibal Holocaust) and screenwriter Fernando Di Leo (The Italian Connection).
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Critic Reviews for Uomini Si Nasce Poliziotti Si Muore
Audience Reviews for Uomini Si Nasce Poliziotti Si Muore
Crime is so rife in Rome that a 'Special Squad' is set up by the Police to work undercover and bring down the crime lords. Only trouble is the recruitment process requires applicants to have a psychological profile identical to a criminals, step forward Tony and Fred (Ray Lovelock and Marc Porel). These two are like an 'X rated' Starsky & Hutch and carnage follows them around like cheap cologne. Working in plain clothes and seemingly allowed to do whatever they want they dish out their own version of justice i.e. if you do a crime and they catch you, be prepared for a good hiding or worse. To set the scene we're introduced to the pair as they witness a pair of thieves on a motorbike try and snatch a handbag from a lady in the street. They fail miserably and the woman is dragged along on her back as she won't let go of her handbag. It's only when she cracks her head on a fire hydrant that they stop the bike so they can kick her in the head and stamp on her stomach.
As I said, Fred and Tony are on hand to apprehend them but the muggers flee off down the high street on their motorbike. Fred takes chase on his bike, with a superb and very long wheelie, while Tony steals the nearest bike and roars after them. A cracking bike chase ensues with the three bikes racing along at breakneck speeds doing more wheelies, riding over the tops of cars and jumping down sets of steps. Inevitably the crooks must be caught but not before they run over a blind mans guide dog, leaving the poor old sod stranded in the middle of the road calling out his pooches name, a crash, skid and bang later and the muggers are off their bike. One dies instantly, impaled on the handlebars, while the other one is dazed and bloodied but ok. Touchingly Fred makes him comfortable as he asks him his name... then snaps his neck! Less paper work apparently!
This is pretty much the standard for the whole film, cracking stuff indeed! Who needs a complicated plot when you can just ride along with these two as they dish out law and order? When they go to question the local mob boss's girlfriend she ends up screwing them both! And willingly too! Not a bad days questioning if you ask me. As you'd expect from director Ruggero Deodato there's the requisite blood and guts, it's not too over the top, with a few bloody gunshot wounds here, an eye gouged out there, but no chunk-busting cannibals eating entrails. Which is a good thing seeing as this isn't a cannibal film. Lovelock and Porel are on fine form and at their best here. They make a great team, a right pair of good looking bastards too. It's a shame this was Deodato's only attempt at the cop genre as it would have been great to see these two back for more fun and games in a sequel.
Highly recommended for fans of 70's grindhouse films
Ruggero Deodato will always be a name synonymous with the controversial classic "Cannibal Holocaust" and the urban exploitation shocker "House on the Edge of the Park." Few seem to remember that he has directed films beyond those two monstrous efforts and a few commendable films at that. One of his good films prior to his gruesome twosome is the Poliziotteschi action police thriller "Live Like a Cop, Die Like a Man."
What we have here is two young police officers that that seem just deranged as the criminals they are chasing. They live and breathe their job, sharing an apartment, ridding bitch to work on a motorcycle and even screwing the same women. What makes them just as deranged is that they brutally kill and maim criminals, breaking their necks after wrecks and even killing the scoundrels before they even commit a crime! Their boss doesn't agree with their methods but likes the results and must come to their rescue as they take on the biggest crime lord in town.
The action is fast and furious as we open with an absolute astonishing motorcycle chase in the busy streets of Rome with no permits. Typical in Deodato fashion the violence is also upped compared to the typical entry into the Poliziotteschi genre, which is hard to believe as it is a monumentally violent genre to begin with. We get goons riding over blind men's seeing eye dogs and even eyes gouged out. However these villains are so nasty they deserve to die horrible deaths.
Our two queer cops are captivating anti-heroes. Mixing their amoral attitude towards human life with their homosexual undertones of their partner relationship makes them really engaging and perfectly played by young Italian hotshots Marc Porel ("Don't Torture a Duckling") and Ray Lovelock ("Murder-Rock: Dancing Death"). Ex-Bond villain Adolfo Celi ("Thunderball") is surprisingly underplayed as their boss and I do wish his character was a little more fleshed out.
Famous Italian filmmaker Fernado Di Leo, popular for his Poliziotteschi "Milieu" Trilogy ("Caliber 9", "The Italian Connection", "The Boss"), pens the script. His "Milieu" Trilogy is the "Man With No Name" trilogy of the Poliziotteschi film genre but I always felt his directing style was subdued. In comes Ruggero Deodato who spices up his script with oodles of style, marvelous camera angles and utmost violence. Ruggero never makes a moment of "Live Like a Cop, Die Like a Man" boring to look at.
Mixing the impressive talents of screenwriter Fernando Di Leo and director Ruggero Deatato makes for a visually stunning, thrilling and violent Poliziotteschi cop film. A few flaws get my goat, like their rather lifeless boss and awful freeze-frame ending, but overall one of the must see films of the genre and easily one of Deodato's best films of his career. I waited patiently years for this classic to reach stateside and patience finally paid when Raro, an Italian DVD company, decided to give the film an American release, despite the release date getting pushed back three separate times! It was well worth the wait.
Blatant homoeroticism and sleaze, the rest of the film is not so interesting. This crime flick from Italy pales in comparison to some of the finer examples of the genre (Almost Human, Rabid Dogs, just about anything with Testi/Castellari) so I'd go with those before this one.
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