Film (1967; vt Danger: Diabolik). Dino De Laurentiis/Marianne. Directed by Mario Bava. Written by Bava, Dino Maiuri, Adriano Baracco, Brian Degas, Tudor Gates, based on fumetti by Luciana and Angela Giussani. Cast includes Adolfo Celi, John Phillip Law, Marisa Mell, Michel Piccoli and Terry-Thomas. 105 minutes, cut to 88 minutes. Colour.
This Italian/French coproduction is one of Di Laurentiis's several attempts to film sf Comic strips, others being Barbarella (1967) and Flash Gordon (1980). Law plays a stylish supercriminal after the manner of Fantômas, the Antihero of 32 French thrillers by Pierre Souvestre and Marcel Allain, published monthly 1911-1913 and beginning with Fantômas (1911; trans 1915 US/UK). He attempts to steal the entire gold reserves and destroy all the tax records of his country. He is caught at the denouement in a shower of radioactive molten gold, becoming his own memorial. Directed with visual panache and a sense of fun by Bava, Diabolik is futuristic but only marginally sf. [PN/DRL]
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