Blu-Ray Review: Property is No Longer a Theft

In a short but explosive career, Italian filmmaker Elio Petri made a number of powerful politicised films. He was rewarded with a Palme d’or, Grand Prize of the Jury and FIPRESCI Prize at Cannes. Not to mention an Oscar nomination. On his most successful films he teamed up with writer Ugo Pirro. Tackling industrial relations in The Working Class Goes to Heaven, power and corruption in Investigation of a Citizen Above Suspicion, and capitalism in Property is No Longer a Theft.

After he’s refused a loan by his employer, a young bank clerk (Total-Flavio Bucci) decides to take revenge by targeting a corrupt wealthy butcher (Ugo Tognazzi). One of the most valued customers at his bank, The Butcher is a nasty piece of work. Total sets about waging a war of crime upon him. Starting with his butcher’s knife, then his hat and even his mistress (Daria Nicolodi), Total doggedly pursues him at every turn.

Property is No Longer a Theft is a black comedy in the darkest sense. Instead of a direct assault on his target, Petri uses farce to get his point across. The rubble of post-war Italy proved a fertile ground for the corruption and greed of unbridled capitalism. Total likes to collect things and is initially not interested in money. However, If the rich can just get richer, why shouldn’t he get some for himself? Property is No Longer a Theft is an enthralling and unusual film which uses black humour in order to make a serious critique.

Special Edition Contents:

  • 4K restoration from the original film negative
  • High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentations
  • New subtitle translation
  • Brand-new interview with actor Flavio Bucci
  • Brand-new interview with producer Claudio Mancini
  • Brand-new interview with make-up artist Pierantonio Mecacci
  • Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Nathanael Marsh

Property is No Longer a Theft is released on Blu-ray and DVD by Arrow Academy on Monday.

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