The Cop in Blue Jeans
Rated: Not sure, I think it should probably be PG-13
Cinemaster S.r.l., 1976
Submitted by Jason WarrenTHE CHARACTERS
Nico Giraldi - Tomas Milian is our wool-clad, unkempt and thoroughly rude hero, a special police agent motorcycle plain clothes cop who enjoys capturing crooks now he's gone straight. But look out if you get on his bad side, as your head may end up down the toilet.
Norman Shelley/Richard J. Russo - Jack Palance as a scenery-chewing mob boss who actually only appears briefly in the film 26 minutes in and doesn't appear again until the 73 minute mark. Obviously just looking to collect a paycheck. Is kneed in the groin. Yeowchh!
Signora Cattani - Maria Rosaria Omaggio as Nico's love interest who seems to have lots of bad luck here getting robbed, stripped down to her underwear, smacked around not only by the villains but even by our hero as he tries to impress a criminal named Chiappetta. Yet she remains loyal to Serpico..ummm I mean Giraldi nonetheless.
The Baron - Guido Mannari as the leader of a pack of petty thieves specializing in purse snatching who make the mistake of their lives when they snatch Shelley's briefcase containing 5 million dollars of stolen money. Not only does Giraldi want to bring him down but Shelley and his men are also gunning for his head.
Garigulo- Raf Luca as Giraldi's fellow plain clothes motorcycle cop and frequent partner. Is outwitted by the Baron and has his motorcycle stolen. Is called an "ass" by Giraldi. Doesn't seem bothered by any of it even when the Baron sends him back his motorcycle in embarrassing fashion.
Chiappetta - overtly homosexual criminal connection who works the discotheque called the Crocodile. Provides necessary knowledge to Giraldi, posing as a pimp, as well as the mob when they come looking. Feels up Giraldi's breast at one point.
Chico & Othello - The Baron's main henchmen and partners in crime. Chico winds up choking to death on a pool ball courtesy of the mob while Othello falls to his death trying to escape them.
Shelley's Henchmen - mobsters who carry out Shelley/Russo's dirty work offing guys in nasty fashion and gathering information.
Garvin & Charlie Chan - less competent Henchmen working for the Baron. Arrested by Giraldi and fellow cop Ballini. "Charlie Chan..where the Hell are you?"
The Stuttering Thief - buffoonish henchman working for the Baron. Is captured by the police but forgotten about and left handcuffed to a lamppost.
Serpico - Giraldi's pet mouse who he carries around with him in his jacket and has been known to "go" there.
Lando Rossi - aka Grottaferrata - guy who crosses Giraldi by leaving slightly obscene annoying phone messages. Ends up getting swirlied in a toilet.
The Motorcycles - They get so much air time, they probably should get recognition as an important characters in the film.LESSONS LEARNED
Mooning is a surefire method for distracting tourists.
Forcing a criminal to place his hands between his legs is the correct method when it comes to handcuffing.
Keep all important valuables and information stuffed safely away in your underwear.
A wool cap is a styling, cool choice of headwear while riding a motorcycle.
You need no visible means of elevation in order to perform high motorcycle jumps over obstacles.
Why walk upstairs when you can just drive your motorcycle?
Pretending to be a pimp and smacking around your girlfriend is a good way to impress in the criminal underworld.
If you can't afford a real on camera comeuppance for your lead villain, just have your hero knee him in the groin instead.STUFF TO WATCH FOR
Opening minutes: incredibly annoying score plays as the opening titles roll imposed over Italian newspapers.
3 min - He's not doing what I think he's doing, is he? Eww!
4 min - well even the dogs seem to be in on this purse snatching act!
5 min - it's the cool and collected Nico Giraldi in his trademark rainbow colored wool cap and dark shades. Groovy!6 min - RANDOM ACT OF VIOLENCE AGAINST A FRUIT STAND!
8 min - The Baron is thrown from his motorcycle and lands square on his helmetless head in a field with no apparent ill effects?!
19 min - there's the endlessly annoying score again! It seems to play endlessly in this movie. GAHHHHH!!!!
19 min - Signora has her clothes ripped off, well down to her bra and panties anyways. Yes, she's a hottie!
26 min - Jack Palance is actually in this movie after all.
36 min - Giraldi apparently wears two sweaters, his wool cap and wool socks to bed, even after sex.
44 min - Grottaferrata's getting a swirlie.
55 min - Is that a gay Andy Kaufman?
73 min - Palance finally reappears.
78 min - 6 motorcycle high jumps in a role, 8 in total appear in the film most of which are completely unnecessary.
91 min - the fate of Shelley/Russo is revealed via barely readable text imposed over the final scene.NOTABLE QUOTES
The Baron to Garigulo: "Thanks for the bike!"
Nico Giraldi to Garigulo: "Christ, when you're putting the handcuffs on him, you put his hands between his legs. How many times have I repeated that!? Do you realize what you've made us look like letting that punk steal your motorcycle from right in under you...I'll tell you what you'll do. Sit down and write over and over again 'I'm an ass. I'm an ass' and write it nice and clear so everyone can read it."
Signora Cattani - "I put all the expensive things I had, jewels and watch, in my bra. No one knows where they are."
The Baron (to Signora after his henchmen rip off her clothes) - "Come on now, this all you got? (snatching jewels and watch from bra) What you got down here (referring to her panties)?"
Nico Giraldi to cops who stopped him for not dimming his headlights: "You happy now! Crotch chucker!"
Nico Giraldi to henchman who challenges him to fight: "Pretty scary?! Who the Hell are you...Sugar Ray?"
Stuttering henchman handcuffed to lamppost: "Hey Hey I can't move! What do I do if I have to go to toilet?"
Othello - "Hey Baron, this dough must be hot. Maybe we ought to burn it."
Nico Giraldi: "Hey Chiappeta, I don't swing that way yet."
Chiappetta: "I'm nervous, I can't stand being alone."
Barkeep: "Where's your little girlfriend?"
Chiappetta: "He's with another man tonight!"THE PLOT
This opens with a series of purse snatching being committed and initially seems as though perhaps it's some weird type of "How To" guide. Finally our lead Nico Giraldi, the cop in blue jeans (actually he only ever wear black jeans in the film!), who looks more like a scruffy unwashed long-haired bum/motorcycle tough than an undercover cop appears on the scene. We are quickly thrust into Giraldi's world as he tries to catch the ring of thieves led by a man nicknamed the Baron, the mastermind behind all these petty robberies who always seems to manage to stay one step ahead of the police who aside from Giraldi, himself a former criminal, are made to look rather foolish throughout this thing. There's lot of action and violence put on display as Giraldi goes about his business capturing the Baron's henchmen fighting one on a fruit stand, brawling with another in an impromptu fight inside an abandoned building, putting guys through obviously fake brick and concrete walls all while making hilariously rude comments at the expense of anyone who dares cross him and well if you really cross him, a swirlie's probably coming your way too!
But what Giraldi really wants is to get his hands on the fences to whom these thieves are selling their stolen merchandise, who in turn resell them for a much greater profit. Giraldi realizes that these are the real criminal masterminds behind these operations and that the thieves are really only "small fry". Giraldi finally gets his chance when the Baron's men start getting killed off in mob style hits and suddenly Giraldi finds himself promoted to working homicide cases and trying to bring down a nasty mob boss named Norman Shelley (Jack Palance), who enjoys watching his men take care of those who dare mess with him when he does finally grace the screen. When the Baron's men made the mistake of stealing Shelley's briefcase containing five million dollars of stolen ransom money, the Baron and his men became Shelley's targets. Soon Giraldi realizes that Shelley specializes in laundered money as well as murder and knows this is just the type of man he's been dying to bring down.
While there's a lot to enjoy in this film, it's seriously hampered by a largely inappropriate score that gets played repeatedly over and over again in some variation throughout the film. I swear if there's an Hell, this score will be waiting to torture me if that's where I end up.
Also it's never quite clear what type of film this was meant to be. There are times it seems much more in the realm of outright comedy but it never seems to fully commit itself to that genre and also plays up its action and police drama elements too which in many ways make this a confusing mess to the initial viewer especially as the film basically picks up action basically already set in motion and just barely mentions who characters are in passing as we watch. It does improve slightly on repeat viewing. Tomas Milian as Nico Giraldi, a character who seems to pattern himself somewhat loosely after Al Pacino's Frank Serpico from Serpico (1973)
, is by far the best thing about this movie. His expressions are spot on, his wool-covered character is quirky and at least the dubbing with regards to his character proves funny. The character would be continued on by Milian in a series of nine more films. Jack Palance's Shelley comes across as menacing and maniacal but of course isn't on screen nearly enough to truly be a fully developed character. In some scenes, it's like they were going for a more serious 1970s style of gritty police drama as was common during the era whereas in many more scenes, they seemed to be going much more for parody/comedy. This one could have been better but as it is seems more an unintentional exercise in comedy with some intentional comedy bits thrown in.