The Goriest Gangster Flick Ever
OverTheMoon | email@example.com | 01/06/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"One question that should be asked is - Why are there hardly any mafia films based in Italy? Sure we have the Godfather series with its flashbacks of Sicily, but what about Italy? There are not many and certainly even the best of movie lovers will have trouble trying to list one or two if any at all! So here you have one... and its good!... in its own very odd strange way.Contraband is a lost classic that has now been restored here on this DVD. What happens when the world's foremost gore director decides to make a crime caper? Answer - more blood than Al Pacino can shoot up in all his gangster flicks put together. Although the plot is mostly non-existent and certainly there is little here in terms of brains, there is plenty of action and horror to boot.Basically the plot revolves around several smuggler gang families from Naples all snubbing each other out in the worst possible way imaginable... and that is all there is it to it really.Everything on display here is pretty pointless but it is not done badly at all and the acting is a little better than what you would expect. There are several gore scenes that stand out - a woman getting her face torched to full melt, a gangster having his head machine gunned to pieces, a mob leader having his throat blown off, plenty backs of the heads flying across the room, cops arresting nuns, horses burning up, mobsters getting boiled alive, gangster shot up in church, a vicious rape sequence, intestines being shot out and lots of screaming - all done to the tune of a funky eighties disco beat that is more apt for a ...movie. No Sir, you will not find this one playing on television any time soon.If gangsters, guns and gore is your thing then you'll love it, but don't get this expecting the cinematic flair of what Hollywood has done with this genre."
Fulci's Lost Classic
OverTheMoon | 02/20/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"One of Fulci's most under-rated movies, CONTRABAND (aka - THE SMUGGLER) also holds the honour of being his most mean-spirited and bloodthirsty movie besides NEW YORK RIPPER. The standard plot takes on Mafia bootleggers vs. a perfumed French drug racketeer (THE FRENCH CONNECTION's Marcel Bozzuffi at his most villainous).With its' fight/chase scenes, brilliantly catchy cheesy disco score, foul-mouthed dialogue, and hundreds of spent bullet casings, the movie rides on the coat-tails of the then-popular Eurocrime genre. It's how vicious the film gets that really sets it apart - someone is boiled in an acid pool, another guy's head is machine-gunned to pieces, a pusher's face is blowtorched into a molten mess, and there's a nearly unwatchable sodomy scene that precedes RIPPER's infamous razor torture scene.The only real drawback is that the first half-hour is a bit of a drag, but once it starts to get moving (with the well-staged assassination of Testi's brother), it doesn't let up from there.Well acted and assured, Fulci demonstrates a confident hand in the action scenes and it's a shame he didn't delve more into this genre."
Great addition to a gorehound's Fulci collection
Josh DeMarco | MA | 04/02/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'll admit, the artwork on the cover of the DVD case had me thinkin this was some corny James Bond type spy flick, the only thing attractin me to it was that the master Fulci had directed it, and I'm an enormously diehard Lucio Fulci fan. After hearin good things about it, I picked it up, and I'm so glad I did. Along with New York Ripper, Maniac, Henry: Portrait Of A Serial Killer , Man Bites Dog and Cannibal Holocaust, this is one of the most violently aggressive movies I have ever seen, I loved every minute of it. It is slow-paced in some parts, and the disco music kinda got to me at some spots, but the blowtorch scene among others made up for any weaknesses. And trust me, the violence and brutality are definitely Fulci-esque: One of the henchmen gets blasted in the gut point blank with a double barrel shotgun, splattering his innards, while another guy gets his throat shot out, and, of course, there's that great 80's exploitation flick staple: gratuitious nudity. Also, the rape scene is pretty intense, anyone with a wife or girlfriend might have a hard time stomaching it, but after all these years of violent cinema, I'm pretty much desensitized to anything. 5 stars for sure, go grab this if you love Fulci's work or bloody Tarantino crime movies."
Sleazy but ok
dave | 06/09/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This film is incredible. the plot is a joke - i looked at the ceiling several times, wondering what the hell were they thinking. It has the trademark fulci violence and - wait - it even has lucio fulci himself, machine gun in hand, killing some bad guys! now this is what i call class! it's hilarious: a guy in a horse race screams «he won! he won!», then he looks back, with his mouth open and gets a gun barrel in the mouth and boom! a seller of cut cocaine gets her face blowtorched!... it's... well it's funny! the soundtrack is a treat, you keep humming it after the film ended... all the elements of sleaze are here but fans of fulci should seek this one out."