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(aka "Calibre 9 " or "Milano Calibro 9" or "The Contract")

 

directed by Fernando Di Leo
Italy 1972

 

Ugo Piazza (Gastone Moschin, THE CONFORMIST) has just gotten out of prison after serving three years of a four-year sentence for a botched bank robbery. His former boss The Americano (Lionel Stander, THE EROTICIST) believes that Piazza made off with $300,000 dollars in smuggled money and got himself arrested and imprisoned purposefully. The police commissioner (Frank Wolff, ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST) offers to give Piazza the money to return to The Americano in exchange for insider information, but Piazza insists that he did not steal the money (even his girlfriend Nora [Barbara Bouchet, AMUCK] does not believe him). Piazza is constantly harassed by The Americano's men Rocco (Mario Adorf, THE BIRD WITH THE CRYSTAL PLUMAGE), Pasquale (Mario Novelli, VIOLENT CITY) and Nicola (Giuseppe Castellano, ISLAND OF THE FISHMEN). Piazza appeals to hitman Chino (Philippe Leroy, THE FRIGHTENED WOMAN) for help, but he does not want to get involved (Chino has been caring for blind Don Vincenzo [Ivo Garrani, BLACK SUNDAY]). When Rocco busts in and harasses Piazza, Chino gives him what-for. The Americano takes this as an insult and demands an apology. After another bungled exchange that results in more missing loot and a dead henchman, The Americano sends Piazza to kill the suspected robber. When he discovers that the target is Chino, he balks but Rocco gets off some shots and hits Don Vincenzo. Piazza is able to cast doubt on The American's suspicions, but Chino is already planning a bloody revenge. CALIBER 9 was the first of Di Leo's noir trilogy (including THE ITALIAN CONNECTION and THE BOSS). Based on a novel by Giorgio Scerbanenco (Di Leo had previously adapted a Scerbanenco novel for the film NAKED VIOLENCE), CALIBER 9 is widely regarded as Di Leo's best film. It has one of his strongest casts (including Moschin, Adorf, and Leroy), a cool score by Luis Bacalov (performed by Osanna) that vacillates between solo piano, classical strings, and progressive rock (the near wordless opening smuggling scene and its brutal aftermath set to the main theme is a mini-masterpiece of a movie in itself). Di Leo's action scenes are rousing and riveting (the final death scene had to be trimmed by the censors, not of any graphic gore but because of the intensity of Adorf's performance).

Eric Cotenas

Posters

Theatrical Release: 25 February 1972 (Italy)

Reviews                                                           More Reviews                                                         DVD Reviews

 

Comparison: 

Raro Video/eOne - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Raro Video/eOne - Region FREE - Blu-ray vs. Arrow - Region FREE - Blu-ray

 

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the DVD Review!

1) Raro Video/eOne - Region 0 - NTSC LEFT

2) Raro Video/eOne - Region FREE - Blu-ray MIDDLE

3) Arrow Video - Region FREE - Blu-ray RIGHT

 

Box Covers

Individual Covers

 

 

 

Distribution

Raro Video/eOne

Region 0 - NTSC

Raro Video/eOne

Region FREE - Blu-ray

Arrow

Region FREE - Blu-ray

Runtime 1:41:15 1:41:43.387 1:41:43.222
Video

1.84:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.25 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

Disc Size: 23,728,759,842 bytes

Feature Size: 14,932,548,480 bytes

Average Bitrate: 15.05 Mbps

Single-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4- AVC

Disc Size: 43,097,543,845 bytes

Feature Size: 31,714,680,192 bytes

Average Bitrate: 34.99 Mbps

Dual-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4- AVC

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

Bitrate

Bitrate Raro Blu-ray

Bitrate Arrow Blu-ray

Audio English Dolby Digital 2.0 mono; Italian Dolby Digital 2.0 mono DTS-HD Master Audio English 1608 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1608 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
DTS-HD Master Audio Italian 1600 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1600 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)

LPCM Audio Italian 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit
DUB:

LPCM Audio English 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit

Subtitles English, none English, none English, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Raro Video/eOne

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.84:1

Edition Details:
• Documentary: Calibro 9 (4:3; 29:39)
• Documentary: La Morale del Genere (4:3; 38:28)
• Documentary: Scerbanenco Noir (4:3; 26:07)
• Photo Gallery with Commentary by Gaston Moschin (4:3; 3:25)
• Director Biography/Filmography
• Twenty page booklet interview with Francesco Di Leo (with bookmark)

DVD Release Date: 15 March 2011
1 of 4 slimline cases in cardboard slipcase

Chapters 11

Release Information:
Studio: Raro Video/eOne

 

Disc Size: 23,728,759,842 bytes

Feature Size: 14,932,548,480 bytes

Average Bitrate: 15.05 Mbps

Dual-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4- AVC

 

Edition Details:
• Documentary: Calibro 9 (4:3; 29:39)
• Documentary: La Morale del Genere (4:3; 38:28)
• Documentary: Scerbanenco Noir (4:3; 26:07)
• Photo Gallery with Commentary by Gaston Moschin (4:3; 3:25)
• Director Biography/Filmography
• Twenty page liner notes booklet interview with Francesco Di Leo (with bookmark)

Blu-ray Release Date:
January 31st, 2012
1 of 4 slim Blu-ray cases in cardboard slipcase

Chapters 11

Release Information:
Studio:
Arrow

 

Disc Size: 43,097,543,845 bytes

Feature Size: 31,714,680,192 bytes

Average Bitrate: 34.99 Mbps

Dual-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4- AVC

 

Edition Details:
• Original Italian and English soundtracks in mono audio (uncompressed PCM on the Blu-ray)
Newly translated subtitles for the Italian soundtrack
• Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing for the English soundtrack
• Calibro 9 2004 making-of documentary featuring interviews with director (29:43) Fernando Di Leo, stars Barbara Bouchet and Philippe Leroy, and others
• Fernando Di Leo: The Genesis of the Genre documentary charting the filmmaking career of the Milano Calibro 9 director (39:13)
• Scerbanenco Noir a look at the work of Italian crime writer Giorgio Scerbanenco, author of the original Milano Calibro 9 novel (26:11)
• Gastone Mochin audio interview (3:28)
• Italia Violenta Matthew Holness, writer and star of cult television series Garth Marenghi's Darkplace, offers up an appreciation of Milano Calibro 9 and the Italian poliziotteschi sub-genre (17:39)
• US Trailer (3:15)
• Italian Trailer (3:16)
• Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Reinhard Kleist
• Fully-illustrated collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film by Roberto Curti, author of Italian Crime Filmography, 1968-1980

DVD of the Feature

Blu-ray Release Date: June 15th, 2015
Transparent Blu-ray cases

Chapters 13

 

 

 

Comments

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

 

ADDITION: Arrow - Region FREE - Blu-ray (June 2015):  Being brief, the Arrow 1080P release advances in every area over the one found in Raro's Fernando Di Leo Crime Collection reviewed HERE. The image has more than double the bitrate, colors are richer, skin tones warmer, more information in the frame etc.. Audio also includes the English DUB in lossless.

 

Arrow include the same three 'Nocturno' documentaries plus a brief audio interview with Gastone Mochin, Italia Violenta - Matthew Holness, writer and star of cult television series Garth Marenghi's Darkplace, offers up an appreciation of Milano Calibro 9 and the Italian poliziotteschi sub-genre for short of 20-minutes, and there area US and Italian trailers. The Arrow package has a reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Reinhard Kleist plus a fully-illustrated collector's booklet featuring new writing on the film by Roberto Curti, author of Italian Crime Filmography, 1968-1980 and being Dual-Format has a second disc DVD included of the feature.

 

Arrow all the way... Di Leo's best poliziotteschi. Highly recommended!

***

ON THE DVD: Raro/eOne's transfer is progressive and anamorphic. The English and Italian audio tracks are in good condition (the Italian track is recommended for the superior voicing of Mario Adorf's character, but the English track is also worth a listening since there is a lot of variance between the two tracks). The Italian Raro version was a 2-disc set with the film on one disc and the extras on the second disc. The Raro/eOne disc combines the feature and extras onto one disc. While the bitrate might possibly be lower, none of the extras on the Italian set had English subtitles.

"Calibro 9" features input from Di Leo, actors Philippe Leroy and Barbara Bouchet, editor Amedeo Giomini, composer Luis Bacalov, assistant director Franco Lo Cascio (aka porn director Luca Damiano), and producer Armando Novelli among others. "Fernando Di Leo: The Genesis of the Genre" follows Di Leo's work in westerns, noir, and erotica with input from several of his stars (Nino Castelnuovo, Barbara Bouchet, Gianni Garko, Pier Paolo Capponi, Howard Ross, Luc Merenda, and Jenny Tamburi) as well as some of his crew members with plenty of clips. "Scerbanenco Noir" is a featurette on the late author Giorgio Scerbanenco, whose work was adapted by Di Leo for this film, NAKED VIOLENCE, and THE ITALIAN CONNECTION (and his script for YOUNG, VIOLENT, DANGEROUS directed by Romolo Guerrieri). A phone interview with Gastone Moschin appears over a stills gallery with English subtitles. The text director biography/filmography seen in all of the other titles in the set rounds out the extras.

  - Eric Cotenas

 

 


Menus

 

Raro Video/eOne - Region 0 - NTSC LEFT vs. Raro Video/eOne - Region FREE - Blu-ray RIGHT
 

 

Arrow Video - Region FREE - Blu-ray

 

 


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

 

Screen Captures

 

1) Raro Video/eOne - Region 0 - NTSC TOP

2) Raro Video/eOne - Region FREE - Blu-ray MIDDLE

3) Arrow Video - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM


Subtitle sample

 


1) Raro Video/eOne - Region 0 - NTSC TOP

2) Raro Video/eOne - Region FREE - Blu-ray MIDDLE

3) Arrow Video - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Raro Video/eOne - Region 0 - NTSC TOP

2) Raro Video/eOne - Region FREE - Blu-ray MIDDLE

3) Arrow Video - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Raro Video/eOne - Region 0 - NTSC TOP

2) Raro Video/eOne - Region FREE - Blu-ray MIDDLE

3) Arrow Video - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Raro Video/eOne - Region 0 - NTSC TOP

2) Raro Video/eOne - Region FREE - Blu-ray MIDDLE

3) Arrow Video - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Raro Video/eOne - Region 0 - NTSC TOP

2) Raro Video/eOne - Region FREE - Blu-ray MIDDLE

3) Arrow Video - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


 

1) Raro Video/eOne - Region 0 - NTSC TOP

2) Raro Video/eOne - Region FREE - Blu-ray MIDDLE

3) Arrow Video - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


Box Covers

Individual Covers

 

 

 

Distribution

Raro Video/eOne

Region 0 - NTSC

Raro Video/eOne

Region FREE - Blu-ray

Arrow

Region FREE - Blu-ray

 



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