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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

 

Violent Streets: The Umberto Lenzi / Tomas Milian Collection [5 X Blu-ray / 3 X CD]
 

Almost Human (1974)     Syndicate Sadists (1975)     Free Hand For a Tough Cop (1976)

 

The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist (1977)     Brothers Till We Die (1978)

 

 

Italian director Umberto Lenzi had recently completed a landmark string of kinky gialli with Hollywood outcast Carroll Baker. Cuban-born/Actor’s Studio-trained Tomas Milian had become one of Spaghetti Westerns’ most popular stars. But when these two notoriously mercurial talents came together for a series of shocking Poliziotteschi –reactionary crime films that reflected the political and sociocultural violence of 1970s Italy – they grabbed audiences by the throat, gunned down the conventions of the genre and changed the emotional velocity of action cinema forever. This collection presents Lenzi & Milian’s five greatest collaborations, now restored uncut and uncensored from the original negatives for the first time ever.

Posters

Theatrical Release: August 8th, 1974 - August 18th, 1978

Reviews                                                                                                       More Reviews                                                                                       DVD Reviews

 

Review: Severin - Blu-ray

Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

  

Bonus Captures:

Distribution

Severin - Blu-ray

Almost Human + Free Hand For a Tough Cop are Region 'A' / Syndicate Sadists / The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist and Brothers Till We Die are Region FREE

Runtime Almost Human (1974): 1:39:20.996
Syndicate Sadists (1975): 1:33:20.761
Free Hand For a Tough Cop (1976): 1:31:50.963
The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist (1977): 1:39:12.112
Brothers Till We Die (1978): 1:39:34.218
Video

Almost Human (1974):

2.35:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 48,269,630,628 bytes

Feature: 32,448,411,648 bytes

Video Bitrate: 36.81 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Syndicate Sadists (1975):

2.35:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 48,217,200,717 bytes

Feature: 30,008,702,976 bytes

Video Bitrate: 36.82 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Free Hand For a Tough Cop (1976):

2.35:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 48,372,632,392 bytes

Feature: 29,558,396,928 bytes

Video Bitrate: 36.75 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist (1977):

2.35:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 47,598,221,645 bytes

Feature: 32,016,107,520 bytes

Video Bitrate: 36.85 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Brothers Till We Die (1978):

2.35:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 48,364,858,592 bytes

Feature: 31,869,911,040 bytes

Video Bitrate: 36.59 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate Almost Human (1974):  Blu-ray:

Bitrate Syndicate Sadists (1975): Blu-ray:

Bitrate Free Hand For a Tough Cop (1976): Blu-ray:

Bitrate The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist (1977): Blu-ray:

Bitrate Brothers Till We Die (1978): Blu-ray:

Audio

DUB:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1857 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1857 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
DTS-HD Master Audio Italian 1823 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1823 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Commentaries:

Dolby Digital Audio 256 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 256 kbps / DN -31dB

Subtitles English translation and DUB, None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Severin

 

Edition Details:

Disc One: Almost Human (1974)

• Audio Commentary With Screenwriter Ernesto Gastaldi
• Audio Commentary With Mondo Digital's Nathaniel Thompson And Troy Howarth, • Author Of Make Them Die Slowly: The Kinetic Cinema of Umberto Lenzi
• Violent Milan – Interview With Director Umberto Lenzi (29:01)
• Milian Unleashed – Interview With Actor Tomas Milian (25:51)
• A History Of Violence – Interview With Ernesto Gastaldi (37:44)
• Italian American Gangster – Interview With Actor Henry Silva (5:30)
• Trailer (3:23)

Disc 2: ALMOST HUMAN CD Soundtrack

Disc 3: Syndicate Sadists (1975)

• First Blood – Interview With Director Umberto Lenzi (8:04)
• Family Affair – Interview With Actress Ida Galli (17:13)
• Kidnapped – Interview With Actor Alessandro Cocco (27:02)
• Interview With The Fascist – Interview With Actor Bruno Di Luia (24:18)
• Trailer (3:31)

Disc 4: SYNDICATE SADISTS/BROTHERS TILL WE DIE CD Soundtrack

Disc 5: Free Hand For a Tough Cop (1976)

• In The Asphalt Jungle – Interview With Director Umberto Lenzi (3:47)
• Tough Guy Corrado – A Look At The Career of Corrado Solari (38:45)
• The Father Of Monnezza – Interview With Screenwriter Dardano Sacchetti (34:02)
• Hand-Held Camera For A Tough Cinematographer – Interview With Cinematographer Nino Celeste (15:40)
• Making Movies – Interview With Producer Ugo Tucci (12:10)
• Extended Bank Robbery Scene Sourced From The Original Negative (3:27)
• Trailer (3:24)

Disc 6: The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist (1977)

• Merli vs. Milian – Interview With Director Umberto Lenzi (4:18)
• A Man Of Action – Interview With Umberto Lenzi (10:13)
• Me, Milian And Merli – Interview With Umberto Lenzi on His Iconic Characters (19:33)
• The Writer, The Director And The Actor – Interview With Screenwriter Dardano Sacchetti (32:00)
• Here Comes The Fist – Interview With Actor John Saxon (8:37)
• Trailer (3:41)

Disc 7: THE CYNIC, THE RAT AND THE FIST CD Soundtrack

Disc 8: Brothers Till We Die (1978)

• Tomas And Tomas – Interview With Director Umberto Lenzi (12:05)
• He Called Me 'The Tamer' – Interview With Editor Eugenio Alabiso (19:28)
• Music And Bullets – Interview With Composer Franco Micalizzi (19:33)
• Heart Of Rome – Interview With Composer Antonello Venditti (18:51)
• Trailer (3:50)


Blu-ray Release Date: March 28th, 2023

Standard bLACK Blu-ray Case inside hard case

Chapters 12 / 12 / 12 / 12 / 12

 

 

Comments:

NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

ADDITION: Severin Blu-ray (February 2023): Severin have transferred five 70's Umberto Lenzi / Tomas Milian Poliziotteschi films to individual Blu-ray plus their are 3 CDs of soundtracks. The films are Almost Human (1974,) Syndicate Sadists (1975,) Free Hand For a Tough Cop (1976,) The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist (1977,) and Brothers Till We Die (1978). The CD soundtracks are for Almost Human, Syndicate Sadists and The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist. It is called "Violent Streets: The Umberto Lenzi / Tomas Milian Collection".

Firstly we had already reviewed four of the films on UK-released Blu-rays. Our review/comparisons for each title; Almost Human on DVDs and Shameless Blu-ray HERE - Syndicate Sadists on DVD and 88 Films Blu-ray HERE - Free Hand For a Tough Cop on a Fractured Vision Blu-ray HERE and Brothers Till We Die on an 88 Films Blu-ray HERE.

Bottom line on the video is that the Severin (often sited as "scanned uncut in 2K from the original negative") are all superior from mildly to dramatically. They are all on dual-layered discs with max'ed out bitrates and the improvement shows in more authentic flesh tones, some of the UK 1080P transfers look horizontally stretched, have a greenish dull haze and less layered contrast. The Severin image colors are far more nuanced and balanced with even grain - notable in all the comparison captures below.

NOTE: We have added 166 more large resolution Blu-ray captures (in lossless PNG format) for DVDBeaver Patrons HERE

On their Blu-ray, Severin offer DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel tracks (24-bit) in the original Italian with optional English language DUBs of varying quality (Henry Silva actually did his own on Almost Human!) Dialogue is clear and the films have plenty of gunfire and egregious violence that includes slaps, knifings, beatings and John Saxon driving golf balls off a tied-down miscreant. Sound is typically hollow with a modicum of bass. Notably the score for Almost Human was by the iconic Ennio Morricone (A Bullet for the General, Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!, Investigation of a Citizen Above Suspicion, U Turn, Stay As You Are etc. etc.) in the stylistic manner we hear in other Poliziotteschi, or Giallo, Spaghetti westerns etc. Kind of repetitious but still addictive and expanding the film's mid 70's milieu and atmosphere. It's discussed in the Thompson / Howarth commentary.  Scores for Syndicate Sadists, The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist and Brothers Till We Die are by Franco Micalizzi (The Tough Ones, The Visitor, and known for some music on Grindhouse releases Planet Terror and Death Proof - as well as Tarantino's Django Unchained) with some drama in the action-based sequences and a funky cool vibe. There is an interview with him in the extrs. The score for Free Hand For a Tough Cop is by Bruno Canfora - who had done similar genre films in the 60's and 70's including Stelvio Massi's Destruction Force that also has Tomas Milian. The audio is authentic sounding mostly flat with instances of buoyancy. Severin offer optional English (translated and DUB) subtitles on their Blu-rays.

NOTE: Almost Human + Free Hand For a Tough Cop are Region 'A' / Syndicate Sadists / The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist and Brothers Till We Die are Region FREE!

The Severin Blu-ray offers many extra features. Some of the supplements are repeated from the UK Blu-rays but I had never heard the two audio commentaries on Almost Human - first with screenwriter Ernesto Gastaldi in Italian with optional English subtitles. Sample:

The second commentary on Almost Human is by Mondo Digital's Nathaniel Thompson and Troy Howarth, author Of Make Them Die Slowly: The Kinetic Cinema of Umberto Lenzi. They discuss everything from Lenzi's career, Milian, Morricone, Ray Lovelock, the variety of names of the film, the Poliziotteschi genre, music also used in Revolver and so much more. It is as excellent as all of their work together or separately. A pleasure. There are hours of interviews with Umberto Lenzi, actor Tomas Milian, writers Ernesto Gastaldi + Dardano Sacchetti, actors Henry Silva + John Saxon, actress Ida Galli, actors Alessandro Cocco + Bruno Di Luia, cinematographer Nino Celeste, producer Ugo Tucci, editor Eugenio Alabiso, composers Franco Micalizzi + Antonello Venditti, a look at the career of Corrado Solari (notable to many for Sergio Leone's Duck, You Sucker!) and trailers for each film. There are 3 CDs of soundtracks for Almost Human, Syndicate Sadists and The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist. 'Stacked' seems an understatement here.

Severin's "Violent Streets: The Umberto Lenzi / Tomas Milian Collection" 8-disc set with 5 Blu-rays offers the definitive package for these Lenzi-Milian Poliziotteschi efforts. They offer the best HD presentations to date, two reveling commentaries and hours of interviews with the participants plus 3 CD soundtracks. It's going to be seen as one of the best Blu-ray packages of the year. These Euro-crime films were at the height of their popularity at this time and, debatably, these are some of the best of this sub-genre. Favorites in this boxset include Almost Human, The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist and Brothers Till We Die. There is frequent brutal violence and multi-faceted institution corruption often present with Milian occasionally representing the working class hero type existing within the system. Severin's Blu-ray (and CDs) package represents a must-own for fans of 70's films - specifically Italian society commentary within exciting action-crime dramas. Strongly recommended!

Gary Tooze

 


Menus / Extras

 

Almost Human (1974)
 

Syndicate Sadists (1975)

Free Hand For a Tough Cop (1976)

The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist (1977)

Brothers Till We Die (1978)


CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

Almost Human (1974)

 

Guilio Sacchi (Tomas Milian) is a small-time hood disillusioned with the crime syndicate for which he works. Looking to make some big money fast, he and some friends kidnap the beautiful Marilů (Laura Belli), the daughter of a billionaire and demand 500 million Lira as ransom. However, hot on his heels is Inspector Grandi (Henry Silva) a hardened cop who only becomes more hell-bent on catching Guilio and his gang with each corpse he finds! Director Lenzi reflects on the Years of Lead in Italy, a time when terrorists caused chaos and police action was judged as deficient...

 

1) Shameless - Region 'B' - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Alan Young - Region 2 - PAL TOP

2) Severin - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Shameless - Region 'B' - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) No Shame - Region 0 - NTSC TOP

2) Severin - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


Syndicate Sadists (1975)

 

Boasting a taut script by Vincenzo Mannino (HOUSE ON THE EDGE OF THE PARK), and featuring Hollywood icon Joseph Cotten (NIAGARA) as a scheming Mafioso, Lenzi’s SYNDICATE SADISTS is a potent example of the dexterous Tuscan journeyman’s compelling thriller work; a fabulous concoction of eye-watering violence and white-knuckle thrills, as an ex-cop (Thomas Milian, THE CYNIC, THE RAT AND THE FIST) seeks retribution against two warring mafia families after his brother is killed during a kidnap investigation. With hints of THE GODFATHER, YOJIMBO and even RAMBO (Milian had picked up a copy of David Morrell’s novel in an airport), SYNDICATE SADISTS finally makes its UK bow on a lip-smackingly gorgeous Blu-ray from 88 Films, whose Italian Collection is your first stop for classic Euro capers that demand rediscovery.

 

1) 88 Films - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) 88 Films - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Shriek Show/Media Blasters - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Severin - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) 88 Films - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) 88 Films - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


Free Hand For a Tough Cop (1976)

 

Following THE TOUGH ONES, this fourth collaboration between director Umberto Lenzi and star Tomas Milian – released as IL TRUCIDO E LO SPIRRO (THE CROOK AND THE COP) – introduced Milian’s iconic character of ‘Monnezza’ and served as the unacknowledged template for 48 HOURS: When a scheming convict (Milian) is sprung from prison by a hard-nosed cop (Claudio Cassinelli of WHAT HAVE THEY DONE TO YOUR DAUGHTERS?), they’ll team up to hunt down Monnezza’s former crime partner (Henry Silva) who’s kidnapped a critically ill child. Robert Hundar (CUT-THROATS NINE), Nicoletta Machiavelli (NO WAY OUT) and a murderer’s row of EuroCrime’s most recognizable character actors co-star in this “classic politziottesco packed full of fun action” (Starburst) co-written by Lenzi and Dardano Sacchetti (THE BEYOND.)

 

1) Fractured Visions - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin (translation) - Region 'A' - Blu-ray MIDDLE

3) Severin (DUB title) - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Fractured Visions - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Fractured Visions - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Fractured Visions - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Fractured Visions - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist (1977)
 
For their penultimate collaboration, Umberto Lenzi and producer Luciano Martino (EATEN ALIVE!) brought together Tomas Milian as a cold-blooded crime boss known as ‘The Chinaman,’ John Saxon as a sadistic American mobster looking for his own piece of the action and Maurizio Merli as hot-headed rogue cop Leo Tanzi – first introduced in Lenzi’s THE TOUGH ONES – gunning for them both. Renzo Palmer (STREET LAW) and Gabriella Lepori (5 WOMEN FOR THE KILLER) co-star in this “fantastic piece of Italian genre cinema and a definitive statement to the craftsmanship of Lenzi” (Cinezilla) co-written by Lenzi, Dardano Sacchetti (THE NEW YORK RIPPER) and Ernesto Gastaldi (ALL THE COLORS OF THE DARK) featuring an oft-sampled score by Franco Micalizzi (DEATH PROOF, DJANGO UNCHAINED)
 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


Brothers Till We Die (1978)

 

For their final collaboration, Umberto Lenzi directs his own razor-sharp screenplay while Tomas Milian delivers a brilliant dual performance reprising the roles of scheming lowlife Sergio ‘Er Monnezza’ Marazzi from FREE HAND FOR A TOUGH COP as well as his twin brother, hunchbacked sociopath Vincenzo ‘Il Gobbo’ Marazzi from THE TOUGH ONES. With Milian providing his own characters’ dialogue, it’s a potent odyssey of trans prostitutes, armed robberies, double crosses, randy Albanians, angry cops, insane asylums and some of the most startling pathos and politics in the history of the genre. Isa Danieli (SWEPT AWAY), Guido Leontini (EMERGENCY SQUAD) and Solvi Stubing (STRIP NUDE FOR YOUR KILLER) co-star in the long-unseen Lenzi/Milian swansong

 

1) 88 Films - Region 'B' - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) 88 Films - Region 'B' - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) 88 Films - Region 'B' - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) 88 Films - Region 'B' - Blu-ray TOP

2) Severin - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


Examples of NSFW (Not Safe For Work) visuals (Mouse Over - click to enlarge)

 


 

More full resolution (1920 X 1080) Blu-ray Captures for DVDBeaver Patreon Supporters HERE

 

Almost Human (1974):

 

Syndicate Sadists (1975)

Free Hand For a Tough Cop (1976):

The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist (1977):

Brothers Till We Die (1978):

 

 
Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

  

Bonus Captures:

Distribution

Severin - Blu-ray

Almost Human + Free Hand For a Tough Cop are Region 'A' / Syndicate Sadists / The Cynic, The Rat and the Fist and Brothers Till We Die are Region FREE


 


 

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