Newest Reviews
Watch List
Kat and the Band
Perfect 10
Red Penguins
China Syndrome, The
Round-Up, The
Around the Sun
Once There Was Brasilia
Dead Pigeon on Beethoven Street
She Demons
Good Girls, The
Hail, Hero!
Faces in the Crowd
Traitor, The
Third Generation, The
Saxon Charm, The
Spy Intervention
Killer with a Thousand Eyes, The
Vigil, The
Liberation of L.B. Jones, The
Wizard of Baghdad, The
Good Manners
Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo
Sweet Home
Big Score, The
Three Outlaw Samurai
Echoes of Fear
Guinea Pig, The
Newest Articles
For God's Sake Strap Yourselves Down: Flash Gordon on 4K UHD Collector's Edition
Party Hard: Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights in with ABC 2 - Your Faces are All Blurred!
Eve Knew Her Apples: The Lady Eve on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Tempo - Gallery One
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 1 - Welcome Once Again to Manchester!
Transformative Apocalypses: Phase IV and Southland Tales
The Happiest Days of Their Lives: The Guinea Pig on Blu-ray
Faced Poe: Three Edgar Allan Poe Adaptations Starring Bela Lugosi on Blu-ray
Hard Luck, Buster: The Cameraman on Blu-ray
At the Hop: Mr. Vampire on Blu-ray
Divine Madness: Female Trouble on Blu-ray
Country Matters: Further Out of Town on Blu-ray
Bat-Damn: Was Joel Schumacher's Batman Really That Bad?
The Beat Goes On: Takeshi Kitano Collection on Blu-ray
Dream Treats: Scorsese Shorts on Blu-ray
It's Only Money: Laughter in Paradise on Blu-ray
A Regular Terpsichore: Dance, Girl, Dance on Blu-ray
Teenage Trauma: Baby Love on Blu-ray
The Happening: Pet Shop Boys It Couldn't Happen Here on Blu-ray
Who Watched The Watchmen?
The Golden Age of Colonic Irrigation: Monty Python Series 4 on Blu-ray
Lady of Pleasure: Lola Montes on Blu-ray
Take You to the Gay Bar: Funeral Parade of Roses on Blu-ray
Hit for Ms: Mark Cousins' Women Make Film on Blu-ray
  Secret Agent Super Dragon The spy life of Brian
Year: 1966
Director: Giorgio Ferroni
Stars: Ray Danton, Marissa Mell, Margaret Lee, Jess Hahn, Carlo D’Angelo, Adriana Ambesi, Marco Guglielmi, Solvi Stubing, Gérard Herter, Jacques Herlin, Carlo Hinterman
Genre: Action, Thriller, Science Fiction, AdventureBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: The death of a fellow spy brings Secret Agent Super Dragon (Ray Danton), a.k.a. the more prosaically monikered Brian Cooper, out of retirement. He sets out to solve a strange case in which ordinary citizens in a small Michigan college town have been turned into crazed killers. The investigation takes Agent Super Dragon and his allies around the globe but eventually to Amsterdam where all leads point to an art collector named Fernand Lamas (Carlo D’Angelo) and a secret cult of masked strangers.

Having been mocked mercilessly in an episode of Mystery Science Theatre 3000 the consensus seems to be that Secret Agent Super Dragon, a.k.a. New York Calling Agent Super Dragon, is a bad movie. Or at best a so-bad-its-good movie. Yet this solidly-crafted Eurospy outing has many laudable qualities including a playful wit more endearing than its smug detractors would allow. Rather than string a bunch of action scenes, girls and gadgets together the plot calls on Brian (snicker), I mean Super Dragon to do actual sleuthing, more in the vein of an Edgar Wallace krimi or Jerry Cotton thriller than the kitschy super-heroics of most James Bond wannabes. While the title implies campy comic book action the film dwells mostly on the covert stalk-and-surveillance side of the espionage game. Imported Hollywood star Ray Danton essays an unusually affable, easygoing superspy, smooth and lighthearted but steely and capable when he needs to be. Indeed the action sequences, while lively and well-choreographed with Italian flair, have a harder edge in common with the early Sean Connery Bonds. Super Dragon even loses the odd fight and winds up in serious peril, an element that renders the film that more compelling.

Sporting a pastel-hued production design that oozes style, as does the snazzy jazz score by Benedetto Ghiglia, the film keeps one foot in the outlandish fantasy camp of your traditional Eurospy adventure. Giorgio Ferroni, one of many genre-hopping Italian workhorses best known for his gothic horror films Mill of the Stone Women (1960) and Night of the Devils (1972) (a reworking of ‘The Wurdulak’ episode from Mario Bava’s horror anthology Black Sabbath (1963)), and co-writers Bill Coleman, Remigio Del Grosso and Mike Mitchell throw into the wild mix: drugged bubblegum, Dragon’s ex-gangster/inventor sidekick Baby Face (Jess Hahn), mind control, the genre-regulation futuristic underground lair and a Spectre (2015) style clandestine meeting of masked conspirators at a luxurious mansion. The latter sequence actually evolves into a strange fusion of Eyes Wide Shut (1969) and the church massacre sequence from Kingsman: The Secret Service (2015). Among Ferroni’s other visual flourishes a shootout in a bedroom lit only by a neon sign flickering outside comes across like a precursor to a slicker sequence in Skyfall (2012).

Admittedly aspects of the story veer towards the indecipherable. Yet the subplot involving a key character enslaved by addiction, indeed a sympathetic depiction of other addicts while condemning exploitative upmarket peddlers, exhibits more of an awareness of actual Sixties youth culture than is common in this genre. Lovely Eurospy stalwart Margaret Lee is rather wasted in the Moneypenny/Sylvia Trench role as Super Dragon’s girlfriend, but sports a glamorous wardrobe and gets to play a more active role at the finale, albeit in fetching lingerie. Upping the glam factor even higher, beloved cult actress Marissa Mell also appears as Charity Farrel: a duplicitous though not unsympathetic femme fatale/informant/recipient of Super Dragon’s smarm. As Baby Face puts it: "Dames are like safes. Some guys know their secrets. Some guys don’t." Quite.

Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam


This review has been viewed 302 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (0)

Untitled 1

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

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu

Recent Visitors
Paul Smith
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg


Last Updated: