A MAN CALLED RAGE (1984)
aka Rage, Rage – Fuoco incrociato
Article 4949 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Tonino Ricci
Featuring Bruno Minniti, Stelio Candelli, Werner Pochath
Country: Italy / Spain
What it is: After the Italian apocalypse
It’s after the apocalypse. A soldier of fortune is hired to locate a source of uranium that is the only element that can cure post-apocalyptic poisoning, Much action happens.
I have yet to see the bottom of sword-and-sandal movies, spyghetti thrillers, or gialli (if that’s the plural of giallo). I can only speculate how bottomless the well of Italian after-the-apocalypse movies of the eighties will be, as I’m still pretty early on in that subgenre. Imagine the Mad Max movies without a shred of the imagination or a grasp of how to stage an action sequence, and that will give you a good idea of what this one is like. I have no idea what the original Italian dialogue is like, but the English-dubbed dialogue here is truly atrocious, and any movie that takes a whole half-hour to set up a plot that could be summarized in two minutes isn’t exactly going to win any awards for pacing. The movie’s worst problem is how it fumbles its best idea; the concept of a chase sequence between a variety of ground vehicles and a speeding train is worth exploring, but this movie manages to make the whole sequence an exercise in dullness, at least partially due to a droning musical score that sounds like it’s trying to lull you to sleep. Oddly enough, it’s most effective moment may be its most unexpected; it tries for a somewhat lyrical and philosophical ending, and though it doesn’t succeed enough to redeem the movie, it works a lot better than might be expected. All in all, this one was pretty bad, but not totally worthless.