Here is an older review of mine I dig from the crypts just for you!
My reviews sure have gotten a lot more wordy lately
Original Title: Roma a mano armata
Director: Umberto Lenzi
Writer: Umberto Lenzi (story), Dardano Sacchetti (screenplay)
"Me, I'm protected by Satan. I'm shitting lead."
A tough, violent cop who doesn't mind bending the law goes after a machine-gun-carrying, hunchbacked psychotic killer.
Hmm, not sure if that covers it so well, but oh well.
I thought this was a solidly acted, fun film.
Maurizio Merli plays Commissioner Leonardo Tanzi , a role similar to his roles in Napoli Violenta (another Lenzi film) and Roma Violenta (Commissario Betti). These movies must have been filmed around the same times (1975-1976). Tenzi is rough and a bit vigilante, but not as much so as his Betti character.
We do get to see quite a few Merli chop-punches and lots of gritted teeth from underneath his porn-quality mustache.
Tomas Milian. He plays a nasty hunchback Moretto who has some great lines throughout the film. (The Satan line above is his.) There is a great scene where he hijacks an ambulance as well.
The story overall felt a little broken to me. There is the overall story of Tanzi trying to track down a high profile criminal, Ferrender. He is constantly after Moretto because he believes that Moretto knows Ferrender's whereabouts... I think. There's a story with a drug dealer which may or may not be tied to Ferrender. And there is also a story with a group of teens who Tanzi chases down in relation to an assault/rape. Other than perhaps establishing Tanzi's vigilante character and providing some fun chases and confrontations, these little pieces that make up much of the middle of the film do not do much to otherwise advance the overall plot.
There are some interesting elements of the media's role in Tanzi's career, as the police captain must always weigh the results of Tanzi's actions vs. the backlash such behavior will result in when the media reports on it.
Action packed with some soul, this one is quite fun. I can overlook the problems with this story when I am handed Italian-style car and rooftop chases!
Score: 7 / 10