I now have a new hero. His name is Rambo. No, not everyone's favorite 'roid bloated geriatric, John Rambo, as portrayed by Sly. The Rambo I am infatuated with is a 20th Century ninja on a motorcycle with a penchant for red knit caps. This Rambo is the scruffy protagonist in Umberto Lenzi's Syndicate Sadists (1975). This Rambo is a true loner, rebel and all 'round outsider who allies himself with only the highest moral and ethical standards. He asks for no thanks or recognition; good deeds are done because they ought to be. Money means nothing to him, if it did he would've been rich a long time ago. He's as quick with his wit as he is with his fists. And, perhaps best of all, he has a kick ass synth-fueled theme song. Unfortunately, I don't think there has ever been a soundtrack released for this film. I'm a huge fan of 60's & 70's Italian cinema and I especially love giallo films (gialli ?). I've never seen a giallo I didn't like. Probably because there's nothing not to like: highly stylized camera work, highly stylized wardrobes, fascinating hairdos (and don'ts), incredible soundtrack music, outrageous criminals with text book psychoses, over-the-top violence, plot twists galore, expository epilogues, mucho sexy ladies, tiny cars I've never seen in the States, the lovable English dubbing ... the list goes on. Well, Syndicate Sadists is really a crime film and not a giallo but it's not much of a stretch. All the crucial elements listed above transcend genres and help define this fine piece of Euro Cinema. If you want to read a nice write-up of this film and all the technical DVD elements that I don't quite understand, check DVD Drive-In. They've done a much better job than I ever could.


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