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DJ XL5’s Italian Zappin’ Party

With his BOLLYWOOD ZAPPIN’ PARTY, DJ XL5 launched a new series of homages to the genre cinema of different nations, allowing him to highlight the evolution and current state of cinema in a given country. After DJ XL5’S MEXICAN ZAPPIN’ PARTY, you are now invited to discover Italian cinema. Meticulous preparations preceded this collage — more than 240 films were evaluated for inclusion and some 60 titles were finally selected. This program celebrates the best and the worst (and the best of the worst!) of Italian genre film. It’s a love letter with a subjective take on the topic, focusing on features produced between 1950 and 1989. A vast and ambitious project, ITALIAN ZAPPIN’ PARTY is complemented by the screenings of five French-dubbed genre films — Enzo G. Castellari’s 1990 : LES GUERRIERS DU BRONX, Ettore Scola’s AFFREUX, SALES ET MÉCHANTS, Tinto Brass’s CALIGULA, Lucio Fulci’s LES CENTURIONS AN 2001 and Luigi Cozzi’s LE CHOC DES ÉTOILES / STAR CRASH — as well as a feature documentary, EUROCRIME! THE ITALIAN COP AND GANGSTER FILMS THAT RULED THE ‘70S, at la Cinémathèque Québécoise.

DJ XL5’S ITALIAN ZAPPIN’ PARTY is divided into five distinct acts. The first, “Once Upon a Time in Italy”, focuses on historical movies such as peplums, strongman films, spaghetti Westerns and other arrays of disputable historical fact. Hercules, Maciste, Samson, Thor the warrior, some sexy Amazons, the Man With No Name, Django, Sabata, Shangai Joe and other iconic figures populate this fresco. “Profondo Giallo E Poliziottesco” explores giallo horror-suspense features and Italian cop and gangster films. Murder, blood, perversion and multiple brawls jostle themselves into an infernal rhythm. “Comedy, Italian Style” showcase some superheroes such as Diabolik and Argoman, tomfooleries from Terrence Hill & Bud Spencer and their doppelgangers, Michael Cobby & Paul Smith, and stupidities care of Alvaro Vitali, known to French Canadians as le Con, a mythical figure of a brand of humour which was tasteless and already passé when these films were released. “The Cannibal, the Possesed and the Slimy” spreads a mix of horror, cannibalism, zombies, possessed women, bad actors, body fluids, gore and, last but not least, a little dose of “nunsploitation”. “Gone With the Nuclear Wind” looks at Italian science fiction — STAR WARS wannabes, post-apocalyptic madness, cheap RAMBO knockoffs and other Italian B movies. Get there early! Trailers and dumbfounding musical performances accompany the audience to its seats.

— DJ XL5