Rome, 1960s. Three young criminals, Lebanese (Pierfrancesco Favino), Ice (Kim Rossi Stuart) and Dandy (Claudio Santamaria), with the help of a makeshift gang of other rogues, including Black (Riccardo Scamarcio), an extremist who thinks he’s the last samurai, kidnap and brutally kill a rich proprietor. With the ransom money in hand, they decide to invest it, together, in the heroine business. It’s the birth of a smart and ruthless organization, which crushes all its rivals, assumes total control of the drug trade, imposes brutal criminal laws on Rome, becomes allies with the Mafia and at the same time benefits from the protection of those faceless men the government assigns their dirty work to. Meanwhile, the authorities are absorbed in a fight against national terrorism and underestimate the flood of dirty money and violence preying upon Rome, the only one who senses the devastating power of these new gangsters is Captain Scialoja (Stefano Accorsi). In order to destroy them, Scialoja unscrupulously gets involved in a dangerous relationship with Patrizia (Anna Mouglalis), a intriguing prostitute, who also happens to be Dandy’s girl. It’s a relationship in which both of them get in way over their heads and initial intentions. Meanwhile, after the organization hits the apex of its success, things inexorably head towards disaster: more and more often, Lebanese manifests his overblown sense of greatness in maniacal ways; disgusted by relationships with Mafia and politicians, Ice thinks about retiring with Roberta (Jasmine Trinca), a “clean” girl who he is madly in love with; Dandy starts to deal on his own. The crew unites again to vindicate the death of Lebanese, who was stabbed to death for a gambling debt that he proudly refused to honor. But, the reunion is short lived: framed by an informer, Ice, Dandy and all the others are arrested. Ice manages to escape, while Dandy is acquitted thanks to his influential friends. The gang is now divided: this marks the beginning of a period of vendettas and a succession of murders…
A chilling political thriller adapted by award-winning actor and director Michele Placido from the bestseller novel by Giancarlo De Cataldo.
Michele Placido (born 19 May 1946) is an internationally known Italian actor and director. He is best known for the role of Corrado Cattani in the TV series La Piovra.
Placido was born at Ascoli Satriano into a poor family from Rionero in Vulture, Basilicata; he is a descendant of the known brigand Carmine Crocco. Placido had a number of jobs since his youth. He studied acting at the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia in Rome, and with Silvio D’Amico at the Academy of Dramatic Arts. He made his debut as an actor in the play Midsummer’s Night Dream in 1969. Two years later he started film work under directors such as Luigi Comencini, Mario Monicelli, Salvatore Samperi, Damiano Damiani, Francesco Rosi, Walerian Borowczyk, Marco Bellocchio and Carlo Lizzani. His first success came with the role of soldier Paolo Passeri in Marcia trionfale (1976, directed by Bellocchio), for which he won a David di Donatello. Two years later he won the Silver Bear for Best Actor award at the 29th… read more
Nice film but the "epic" tale of the banda della Magliana is so huge that the runtime of a movie is not enough. If you can I suggest you to watch the TV series quoted by Sterling McGarvey. Produced by SKY Italia a couple of years ago the series is more gritty and similar to the 70s italian crime movies style.
Although many Italians swear by the television series that came after this film, it's a great gangster film that depicts crime in the 70s without the Mafia preconceptions that color Hollywood's idea of Italian crime films. Well-edited, well-paced and full of great performances.