Almost Human (1974), also called The Death Dealer and The Kidnapping of Mary Lou, is an Italian poliziottesco film directed by Umberto Lenzi, with a musical score composed by Ennio Morricone.
Giulio Sacchi (Tomas Milian) is an trigger-happy small-time crook who, after getting kicked out of his gang for murdering a cop, kidnaps a wealthy heiress for a half-billion lire ransom. Straight-laced cop Walter Grandi (Henry Silva) follows the trail of drug-fueled death and destruction left in his wake, and tries to catch him before its too late.
The original Italian title is Milano odia: la polizia non-può sparare, which translates to "Milan hates, the police can't shoot".
This film provides examples of:
- Affably Evil: Giulio, whenever he's able to suppress his impulses. Doesn't stop him from being a brutal sadist who rapes and murders indiscriminately.
- All Issues Are Political Issues: Giulio justified his crimes by arguing that the wealthy elite like Porrino have hurt him economically, so holding his daughter for ransom is simply a quid pro quo.
- Ax-Crazy: Giulio, in spades.
- Bittersweet Ending: Detective Grandi finally corners and kills Giulio after the justice system fails. But, he's probably going to prison for a long time, and it won't bring back any of the people Giulio killed.
- Badass in a Nice Suit: Grandi, replete with a gray blazer and spiffy maroon turtleneck.
- Cool Guns: Giulio and his cohorts wield STEN MK II submachine guns. Grandi carries a police-issue Beretta M1951.
- Dirty Coward: When he finally gets cornered, Giulio pitifully begs for his life and tries to flee.
- Fan Disservice: Topless women in an Italian exploitation movie? A-okay. Said women being tortured, raped, hung from a chandelier, and machine-gunned to death by a drug-fueled psychopath? Not so much.
- Never Trust a Trailer: The American promotional campaign inexplicably tried to pitch the film as a horror movie.
- No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: For trying to protect Marilú from execution, Carmine is killed by Giulio.
- Psycho for Hire: Giulio is kicked out of his gang after his trigger-happy ways nearly get them caught during a simple bank hold-up.
- Sole Survivor: Giulio is the only one to make it out of the caper alive, if only because he's killed everyone else.
- Understatement: The morning after the massacre at the villa,note Giulio comments that things got "a little out of hand."
- Urban Hellscape: Milan is a gray, perpetually-overcast crime-ridden hellscape where murder, kidnapping, and robberies are everyday occurrences. Truth in Television, at least at the time.
- Would Harm A Child: Giulio shoots a child through a closed door. To be fair, it's a spur-of-the-moment reaction, and even he seems disgusted with himself afterward, the only time he shows any regret for his actions.
- Villainous Breakdown: Giulio has one whenever he gets called out or doesn't get his way.
- Villain Protagonist: Giulio has little-or-no redeeming colleagues, and any sympathy the audience may have for him has vanished by the time he's raped and murdered an entire family for kicks.