Blu-ray Review: ‘Silent Action’ (1975)

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Stars: Luc Merenda, Mel Ferrer, Tomas Milian
Director: Sergio Martino
Distributor: Fractured Visions

“No, somebody tried to kill me!”

In the grittiest of natures, three murders take place…but are made to look like suicides. The deaths: car crash into a tree; bullet to the head; and decapitation via train. The victims: a retired army Major; a Colonel; and a General. The murders are depicted in such an out-of-this-world manner, only one man is capable of solving this scandal: Inspector Giorgio Solmi (Luc Merenda). 

Taking into the bizarre nature and close proximity of the timely deaths, Inspector Solmi and his colleagues have no choice but to pursue the legitimacy and truth behind the “suicides”. Of course, style isn’t the only thing Solmi has on point as he is proven right to pursue the truth! Closely mirroring the edgy and dangerous politics of then-contemporary Italy, Solmi and co. are faced with hidden figures, sleaze, double-cross, and plenty of exaggerated violence.

Contextually inspired by its own country’s politics and visually inspired by the cop-driven films of the New Hollywood, Silent Action is one of the better, few examples which perfectly encapsulates the Poliziotteschi subgenre in Italian filmmaking. Co-existing in the same period as the Giallo films, the Poliziotteschi maintained the mystery elements, but with an increased focus on crime and action instead. Despite the outragious presentations of murder and death, there are few notions of this excitement and interest level to establish Silent Action as a memorable film. Perhaps this is because the balance of story shifts towards a heavy execution of police procedurals and detective work. Under the direction of Sergio Martino, Luc Merenda has the freedom and licence to unashamedly cool all throughout the picture.   

From Fractured Visions, this is their first Blu-ray title. On the outside, the artwork is beautifully brilliant and would look excellent on both the top shelf and Instagram. On the disc itself, this is a Blu-ray full of great content. The film, however, is far from a perfect image – even after a 2K scan. But nothing can be helped if, for example, the original negatives were of an inadequate quality. For the most part, the picture quality is nice, just not consistently excellent. That aside, the extras are to die for. Hours worth of magic and interviews galore, the undisputed standout is none other than a 50-something-minute, The Age of Lead: 1970s Italy – a perfect contextualisation of the era behind and in front of the camera. There’s even a CD too!

Ultimately, this is a fine debut from Fractured Visions. Limited to 3000 copies, Silent Action can be anything ranging from a perfect addition to every collection of boutique Blu-ray or a great starting point for those building their collections. A fully loaded release, inside and out, Fractured Visions with their first release have set a statement of intent to be the best provider of Blu-ray content in the market. Excitement awaits for their subsequent release!

Silent Action is available now and can be baught here. Many thanks to Witchfinder and Fractured Visions for the pleasure of this film.

4 Stars

Dom.

For John.


This article’s featured image: By Source, Fractured Visions, Fair Use

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