HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Arctic
Fate of Lee Khan, The
El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie
Ladyworld
Rocketman
Kid Who Would Be King, The
Making Waves: The Art of Cinematic Sound
America America
Darkest Minds, The
Along Came Jones
Hummingbird Project, The
Under the Table You Must Go
Harry Birrell Presents Films of Love and War
Hanging Tree, The
Godzilla: King of the Monsters
Scooby-Doo! Camp Scare
Itsy Bitsy
Witchmaker, The
Prey, The
If It's Tuesday, This Must Be Belgium
Happy Death Day 2U
Full Moon High
Strange But True
Kamikaze 1989
Never Grow Old
Time of Your Life, The
Mountain Men, The
Epic
Best Before Death
John Wick Chapter 3: Parabellum
Isabelle
Non-Stop New York
Once Upon a Time in Deadwood
Oblomov
Alita: Battle Angel
We the Animals
Ibiza Undead
Wings of Eagles, The
Beats
Body Parts
   
 
Newest Articles
Growing Up in Public: 7-63 Up on Blu-ray
Learn Your Craft: Legend of the Witches and Secret Rites on Blu-ray
70s Psycho-Thrillers! And Soon the Darkness and Fright on Blu-ray
Split: Stephen King and George A. Romero's The Dark Half on Blu-ray
Disney Post-Walt: Three Gamechangers
But Doctor, I Am Pagliacci: Tony Hancock's The Rebel and The Punch and Judy Man on Blu-ray
Once Upon a Time in Deadwood: Interview with Director Rene Perez
Shit-Eating Grim: Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom on Blu-ray
Stallone's 80s Action Alpha and Omega: Nighthawks and Lock Up
Python Prehistory: At Last the 1948 Show and Do Not Adjust Your Set on DVD
You Could Grow to Love This Place: Local Hero on Blu-ray
Anglo-American: Joseph Losey Blu-ray Double Bill - The Criminal and The Go-Between
Marvel's Least Loved and Most Loved: Fantastic 4 vs Avengers: Endgame
Battle of the Skeksis: The Dark Crystal Now and Then
American Madness: Sam Fuller's Shock Corridor and The Naked Kiss on Blu-ray
Flight of the Navigator and the 80s Futurekids
Trains and Training: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 13 on DVD
Holiday from Hell: In Bruges on Blu-ray
The Comedy Stylings of Kurt Russell: Used Cars and Captain Ron
Robot Rocked: The Avengers Cybernauts Trilogy on Blu-ray
Hammer's Bloodthirsty Bad Girls 1970: Lust for a Vampire and Countess Dracula
Hammer to Fall: Kiss Me Deadly on Blu-ray
Home of the Grave: The House That Dripped Blood and Asylum on Blu-ray
Wondrous Women: Supergirl vs Captain Marvel
Things Have Changed: Films You'd Be Insane to Make Now
   
 
  Seven Golden Men Cool crooks and a foxy femme fataleBuy this film here.
Year: 1965
Director: Marco Vicario
Stars: Rossana Podesta, Philippe Leroy, Gastone Moschin, Gabriele Tinti, Giampiero Albertini, Dario De Grassi, Manuel Zarzo, Maurice Poli, Ennio Balbo, Alberto Bonucci
Genre: Comedy, Action, Thriller
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: On a quiet day on a high street in Genova, Switzerland, six workmen are doing some road work. No one suspects that they are actually the six greatest thieves from around the world recruited by suave British criminal mastermind Albert (Philippe Leroy) a.k.a. ‘The Professor’ and his glamorous girlfriend Giorgia (Rossana Podesta) to pull of an audacious underground heist. The plan is to steal a fortune in gold bullion from under a high security bank vault, but for all their ingenuity and steely resolve, getting away with the crime of the century does not prove easy.

Although the crime thriller, more specifically the gangster film came out of Hollywood, one could make the case that European cinema gave birth to its idiosyncratic sub-genre: the caper movie. Jacques Becker, Jean-Pierre Melville and especially Jules Dassin contributed the key works: Touchez pas au Grisbi (1954), Bob le Flambeur (1955) and Rififi (1955). A decade later, Dassin revived the genre with the more flamboyant Topkapi (1964) which inadvertently spawned a further sub-genre, the swinging caper movie. While the set-up was often the same - wily genius assembles a ragtag group of glamorous international misfits with specialist skills for a seemingly impossible heist - the swinging caper movie reflected the aspirations of the jet set era by adding ingredients like pop art visuals, super chic fashions and impeccably groovy soundtracks. All of which you’ll find in abundance in the little gem that is Seven Golden Men.

Seven Golden Men is very much the product of an era when Italian cinema exuded glamour and cool the equal of Hollywood, if not moreso. Handsomely crafted by little known director Marco Vicario, the film elaborates upon the conceit at the heart of the cinema of Melville and Dassin, turning the mechanics of suspense filmmaking into an elaborate, teasing game. It is all about sustaining moments of tension through the creation of intricate set-pieces involving hi-tech toys. Consequently, the film offers little of substance beyond comic strip fun. The central heist remarkably occupies two-thirds of the running time. Vicario masterfully cranks up the suspense as our likeable rogues endure constant interruptions from nosy traffic cops and a nerdy amateur radio enthusiast (Alberto Bonucci) who intercepts their communications, climaxing with a hilariously improbable but charming feat of ingenuity when police finally storm the bank. Vicario invites viewers to indulge in vicarious thrills over the exploits of these crafty crooks. His direction makes the most of the spectacular sets and, drawing heavily from Topkapi, creates near-silent suspense sequences that rank as precursors to those found in such contemporary genre works as Mission: Impossible (1996) or Ocean’s Eleven (2001).

Of course it turns out stealing the gold is not half as difficult as getting it back home to Rome. Events grow increasingly playful as more than one character springs a fiendish double-cross. The finale is both cynical and optimistic as our anti-heroes are inevitably undone by their own duplicitous nature and the greed of common everyday folk (wherein Vicario succeeds in having us root for the criminals over the man on the street) but happily set out to try the whole thing again. Amidst the Franco-Italian cast, fans of Euro cult cinema may recognise stocky crime film fixture Gastone Moschin and Gabriele Tinti, future husband of sexploitation star Laura Gemser. Despite that title, the key presence here is actually the lone female: Rossana Podesta, wife of director Marco Vicario. Sporting a fetching Louise Brooks bob, Podesta oozes charisma as she slinks across the screen wearing some quite extraordinary outfits but Georgia is not merely a decorative presence. She plays an active role in aiding the heist and proves as quick-witted and crafty as her male criminal cohorts, emerging one of the great exploitation film femmes fatale. The film proved a huge success in Europe, spurring Vicario to return with the sequel: Seven Golden Men Strike Again (1966).

Click here to listen to the theme music

Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam

 

This review has been viewed 1819 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
Andrew Pragasam
  Rachel Franke
Enoch Sneed
Paul Shrimpton
  Desbris M
   

 

Last Updated: