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Vendetta for the Saint

4.6 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Roger Moore, Ian Hendry. While vacationing in Italy, Simon Templar comes across a mysterious man who claims to be from an aristocratic family-the Mafia. 1969/color/95 min/NR/fullscreen.

Amazon.com

Roger Moore starred as novelist Leslie Charteris's globe-trotting, mercenary adventurer Simon Templar in a 1963-67 television series, as well as the subsequent, agreeable TV feature Vendetta for the Saint. Set against an appealingly sunny Sicilian backdrop, Vendetta finds Templar, an elegant thief and ethical busybody, outraged when a British banker is murdered after he recognizes an old colleague-turned-Mafia kingpin. The ruthless crime boss, Alessandro Destamio (Ian Hendry), having faked his death during a staged bank robbery, makes several attempts on Templar's life while the latter probes the villain's business and family. (Of course, being Templar, he also dates Destamio's innocent niece and shares a kiss with the bad guy's beleagured mistress.) Vendetta for the Saint is full of small pleasures, including a nice supporting role by Marco Ponti as a police detective who confides in Templar, and Aimi MacDonald as a lost soul trying to escape Destamio's reach. --Tom Keogh

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Roger Moore, Ian Hendry, Rosemary Dexter, Aimi MacDonald, George Pastell
  • Directors: Jim O'Connolly
  • Writers: Harry W. Junkin, John Kruse, Leslie Charteris
  • Producers: Roger Moore, Johnny Goodman, Robert S. Baker
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: MPI
  • DVD Release Date: August 31, 2004
  • Run Time: 95 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0001Z35LU
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #102,385 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Vendetta for the Saint" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By trebe TOP 500 REVIEWER on January 21, 2004
Format: VHS Tape
Vendetta for the Saint, published in 1963 was Leslie Charteris's last full length Saint novel. The story was featured as a two-part episode of "The Saint" TV program in 1969. Starring Roger Moore as Simon Templar, the programs were repackaged as a feature, with additional music and opening credits added. Edwin Astley's opening theme is one of his best musical creations for the Saint.
Euston, an Englishman on holiday in Naples, believes that a man in a restaurant is someone he worked with years before. The other man insists that he is mistaken, claiming that his name is "Al Destamio". After the encounter, Templar has a brief chat with Euston, and is extremely troubled the following day when the Englishman turns up dead from a knife wound in the back. Thus starts the '"vendetta", as The Saint is determined to discover why an innocent man died.
The leader of the Mafia is dying and will name a successor soon. Destamio (Ian Hendry) is one of the prime candidates, and can't afford to have Templar snooping around into his past, and orders his lieutenants to eliminate him. Simon continues probing into Destamio's roots, making contact with his non-Mafia family in Sicily, quickly becoming close to his lovely young niece Gina (Rosemary Dexter). A car bomb fails to send The Saint to heaven, but his halo is dented when he is captured while investigating the Destamio family crypt.
Templar's daring escape from the Mafia's mountain stronghold is probably one of the most exciting sequences in the entire series. Dropping down a mountainside, and into the verdant countryside, he is pursued by the full force of the Mafia. Time after time, Templar escapes detection and avoids capture until he reaches safely.
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Here's a nod to the always elegant George Sanders, but Roger Moore has to be considered the definitive Simon Templar. Watching Moore breathe life into the "Robin Hood of modern crime," marveling at the wit and charm and unruffled sophistication of his character - and, of course, that ever present twinkle in his eye - well, one can see why he was tapped to succeed Sean Connery as 007.

VENDETTA FOR THE SAINT was first a 1964 novel by Leslie Charteris, although I heard that it was actually ghost written by noted sci-fi author Harry Harrison. This film adaptation was originally a two-part episode which aired in 1969 in THE SAINT's final season, but then re-edited and released theatrically in Europe. For those not yet in the loop, Simon Templar a.k.a. the Saint scours the globe in search of adventure, seeking to redress wrongs, foil villainy, and, yeah, hook up with gorgeous women.

VENDETTA FOR THE SAINT finds Simon embroiled in a case of mistaken identity and assumed identity, the Sicilian Mafia, and (these last two is a given) attempts on his life and run-ins with the local police. As in most of his adventures, it starts with the Saint poking his nose into other people's business. In a restaurant in Naples, Italy, a banker mistakes a man for a longtime friend and fellow co-worker. But the man coldly denies the acquaintanceship, and Simon Templar steps in just in time to save the banker a beating. The next morning Simon learns that the banker has been murdered and, predictably, he can't leave it alone. So there goes the Saint, curiously butting in again. When Simon later sasses a Mafia don, and a femme fatale wonders, "Dear man, have you any idea what you're taking on?" - well, I wanted to grouse at the screen, "Woman, do you not ever watch this show?
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If you've already got these two episodes in your Saint Megaset or something you might think you can skip this DVD, but don't do it! This DVD includes a great running commentary by Roger Moore, Johnny Goodman (Assoc. Producer), Bob Baker (Producer) and Marcus Hearn (author of "The Hammer Story").

I don't know when they did the commentary, but all the speakers are in fine form. I know on some older movies the commentators are a little too old to remember anything interesting, but that's certainly not the case here.

So if you're a Saint fan at all, add this DVD to your collection just for the commentary.
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I first learned of this series while reading Sir Roger Moore's excellent autobiography "My Word Is My Bond", and knew I would have to have it, as I have been a huge lifelong fan of his movies. In fact, that book has inspired me to chase down virtually all of his non-Bond films, and it's been great fun discovering the old gems. The handsome young Moore of 1967 was perhaps a bit young for Bond (he is actually older than Sean Connery), but perfect for The Saint. Late '60s Italy looms large as a stylish, decadent playground with few inhibitions and was a breeding ground for the purest sports cars (back when "sports car" did not mean overpowered, overweight GT), so it's always fun to see a movie from that era, even better if it has a Bond-In-Training (and it was immediately obvious that he had the right stuff to be 007).

Without repeating the plot breakdown as others have already done well here, suffice to say that if you are a fan of Moore as Bond, you will immediately feel at home with him as The Saint. It's fun catching some of his trademark mannerisms that later showed up in the Bond films as well. And the icing on the cake, as always, is hearing Roger's commentary track. I can't think of an actor who has provided commentary on more of his own work than Roger. He is the epitome of class (onscreen and off) and has a gentle, dry, British humor that is very comforting to take in over a glass (or two) of cognac. He's like the worldly, sophisticated British grandfather I never had, telling fireside stories of his adventures all over the world. Time to pickup The Saint box set!
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