(158) GOLDSNAKE (1966) Ferdinando Baldi EuroSpy | Stanley Kent
Italian title GOLDSNAKE: IL SEGRETO DEL SDERPENTE D'ORO [Goldsnake: Secret of the Gold Snake]
Both English language version plus uncut German print with optional English subtitles
director: Ferdinando Baldi
starring Stelio Candelli (as Stanley Kent) · Annabella Incontrera
Tani · Juan Cortes · Salle Melan
is an obvious attempt to capitalize on the International James Bond hit
Goldfinger, this time, in the hands of Italian veteran
Ferdinando Baldi. However, with the exception of Carlo Savina's John Barry-ish
music (lead vocal by Iva Zanicchi, doing her very best Shirley Bassey),
there's not much of the Goldfinger imprint to be found.
Most all of the story takes place in Singapore (rather than American and
the UK) and while actor Stelio Candelli [Stanley Kent] plays his secret
agent character with a certain cool, he ultimately is more similar to
Roger Moore than Sean Connery. There are mandatory Bond Girls, fancy cars
and determined villains. But the gadgets fall into a 'why bother'
category, the most significant being a pack of exploding matches.
The plot is all-over-the-place
but focuses mostly on agent 700 Kurt Jackson's attempt to find a stolen
nuclear bomb formula. This is not the typical nuclear bomb, but rather,
it's a miniature one [miniature in portability, not in detonation capabilities].
The deadly weapon was developed by scientist Wong Lee in Singapore and
a short time later, stolen by the Black Forces. These shadowy villains
are either interested in controlling the world or selling the bomb to
a rogue nation [their intent changes throughout the film]. However, American
spy Jackson is on the case. Recruited from a counter-espionage position
in the States, he's whisked away to the Far East where he follows a trail
that leads to dead bodies and constant blind alleys before his ultimate
Baldi was considered among the best directors of Spaghetti Westerns, helming
a number of the truly great entries (including BLINDMAN
THY NEIGHBOR). Although he was most comfortable in that genre,
Ferdinando also made other cult favorites, like THE
OPIUM CONNECTION, LONG
LASTING DAY and the sex/horror opus TERROR
EXPRESS!. Director Baldi - who sometimes signed his films as Ted
Kaplan or Ferdy Baldwin - retired from filmmaking in 1988 after 50 films.
He died peacefully in his sleep at age 90 in November 2007. The star here
is Stelio Candelli (using a Stanely Kent pseudonym). Interestingly, the
Anglo moniker caught attention of British producer William Slater who
hired Stelio for the lead role of Danny Scipio in the crime TV series
Vendetta!. After the long-running show, he returned to Europe for numerous
Spaghetti Westerns and several popular cult hits [HOT
LIPS OF THE EXECUTIONER, NUDE
FOR SATAN and Lamberto Bava's Demons]. His final
film would be Umberto Lenzi's MEAN
TRICKS before retiring in 1992.
Italian/German co-production; 2 discs: English language and uncut German print with English subtitles;, widescreen format,
uncut 91 minutes, DVD Package encoded for ALL REGION NTSC FORMAT.
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