The Lion's Share (1985)

  |  Drama, Mystery

The Lion's Share (1985) Poster

Suspended from the Italian police force, Marco Borelli travels to South Africa to find out the truth about his father's death.

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1 June 2003 | hae13400
| Can This Be Called A Typical Giallo?
A traumatised and suspended overbearing Italian cop, Marco Borelli, returns to his home-town, Sun City, RSA (Republic of South Africa), and begins to high-handedly investigate the mysterious death of his father, which is the very cause of his life-long trauma (actually, the young Marco saw his father was attacked by someone and consequently eaten by lions !). And soon, Marco's Roman partner, Enzo Gatti, shows himself to help Marco to figure out who attacked and let the lions eat his father... Although I believe I'm one of the serious Giallo-lovers, I had not even realised the very existence of this Italian-German-RSA co-produced film until my Afrikaans friend, who is also crazy about Gialli, introduced it to me. And now I have to say sorry for our disagreement that, though she is almost proudly announcing this is a typical Giallo which unusually sets in RSA, I can hardly think so. On the contrary, I have to say this is not a typical Giallo at all. Actually, this film doesn't have so-called Giallish elements, like homicide-maniac(s), serial-murders, highly-cinema-graphically expressed violence, and not-only-always-beautiful-but-also-occasionally-naked female characters. Instead of these, this one has the revengeful cop, rather usual influential-bad-guys, and drug-addicted and tired women. Indeed, it can be said the world of this film is essentially not only of the simply male-centric but also of the potentially male-homosexual, which regards women as the passive and static rather than the actively living. And furthermore, it should be said what this film has seems to be anti-South-Africanism rather than South-Africanism. For instance, the film-makers describe Sun City as the miniaturised and simplified Las Vegas or Reno at its worst. (And it should be added this 1973 film has strange ignorance of apparently inescapable problem of so-called apartheid.) To make matters worse, the action sequences of this film are unacceptably cheap, and self-destructively spoil the whole to a certain degree. Especially, the apparently unnecessary karate scene of the last sequence is incredibly amateurish and laughable. (After all, there is an uncomfortable possibility that this 1973 film is badly influenced by ENTER THE DRAGON.) Still, I don't think this film as a whole is not particularly bad mainly because of its very last scene which has almost unexpectedly astonishing impact. Indeed, in the 90% of this film, I could hardly understand the necessity of the very existence of Enzo Gatti, whom Venantino Venantini characteristically played, and even thought he was nothing but an unnecessarily added character, but now I can tell he is, at least in a sense, the most indispensable enriching character in this film. So, ultimately, it should be stressed the film-makers trustworthily know how to end the film dramatically. In conclusion, I can say this is a film which is not apparently recommendable to the serious Giallo-lovers but is adequately recommendable to the general thriller-lovers.


Plot Summary


Drama | Mystery


Release Date:

30 August 1985

Country of Origin

Italy, South Africa, West Germany

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