Italy’s great Ugo Tognazzi gets his due in Castro retrospective

Apr 24, 2019 319

BY: G. Allen Johnson

On a glorious Saturday at San Francisco’s Castro Theatre, you’ll feel the wheels coming off as Italy undergoes jarring change during a painful decade of transition. Of course, it happens on 35mm film. It’s the 1970s, and our guide is Ugo Tognazzi, who is government bureaucrat, corporate villain, suicidal chef, proudly gay and one very ridiculous man during a five-film tribute. 

Consider the scene in which Tognazzi, as a jaded magistrate, barely escapes injury when justice literally falls apart — a courthouse (including a statue of the scales of justice) crumbles because of “structural deficiency” in Dino Risi’s “In the Name of the Italian People.” Or the uproarious moment in “La Cage Aux Folles” when Tognazzi tries to teach his drag-queen life partner how to walk in a manly way like John Wayne.

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SOURCE: San Francisco Chronicle

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