Saturday, 9 June 2007

A Violent Professional: The Films of Luciano Rossi

Kier La-Janisse's new book arrived this morning, immediately prompting a change of plans and a cover-to-cover reading.

The third in FAB Press's Cinema Classics Collection series of monographs on individual cult films, genres, actors and directors, the handsomely produced and well-illustrated 128 page volume – designer Rob Jones has went stratospherically above and beyond the call of duty – follows a brief biography of the sadly now-deceased cult character actor (happily countering the story propagated by Joe D'Amato in the Totally Uncut documentary that Rossi had been in the asylum and was living as a bum; though Rossi's fate in the last quarter-century of his life makes for depressing reading things never got quite that bad) with a survey of his 70-plus film appearances from 1967 to 1987, describing his appearance in each, ranging from the blink-and-you'll-miss-him to his more habitual single scene-stealers to occasional more substantial supporting roles, and evaluating them on the basis of how much screen time he gets and “how cute he is” in his own special way.

Clearly a labour of love, it's a book that every Eurocult fan should buy, even if they aren't necessarily fans of Rossi or the western and crime genres in which he was most prominent – though as Janisse points out, the overlap of talent between cycles means that blinkered horror fans perhaps don't know what they are missing – to demonstrate that there is an audience / market for future volumes of what one hopes will be an ever-expanding series; random thoughts as to subjects would be Marina Malfatti, Jorge Rigaud and Frank Wolff...


Stephen Grimes said...

Some friends met the author at the Nightmare USA festival in London and told them that her next book was going to be about spaghetti western star Federico Boido aka Rick Boyd,he also featured in such films as No Alla Violenza and Danger Diabolik.
I also read something about her working on a book about the Decameroti genre,if true this should be very interesting.

K H Brown said...

Biodo / Boyd does the introduction to the book, being a friend of Rossi who worked with him on a number of spaghettis n particular.

A book on the Decamerotics - sign me up now!