Tognazzi plays a rich Parma dairy farmer forced to sell up his greatest love - his material possessions - to meet the ransom demanded by a gang of terrorists who have kidnapped his son. In an attempt to fathom the siege mentality induced in an Italian society which had by then accepted terrorist violence as a commonplace, Bertolucci inverts the son-in-search-of-the-father theme of his most widely admired film, The Spider's Stratagem, and his small ensemble of lead characters begin to spin webs of deception - on each other, on us. The result is a mordantly witty tragi-comedy which matches the sombre tones of Carlo Di Palma's cinematography, but the style is no less flamboyant and seductive than that of Bertolucci's earlier films.
The Tragedy of a Ridiculous Man
Cast and crew