Escalation (1968 Italian film)  

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"Profound philosophical themes (capitalism corrupts, crime begets crime) vie with the psychedelic trimmings and slick, swinging surfaces of Roberto Faenza's tragi-farce about an Italian hippie transformed by his experience of high finance and a frigid wife into a murderous businessman. The result is a confused tedium that not even Luigi Kuveiller’s stunning photography can disguise."--Sight & Sound

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Escalation (1968) is an Italian film written and directed by Roberto Faenza and starring actor Gabriele Ferzetti. The film is known for its Morricone soundtrack with the composition "Dies Irae Psichedelico".



Luca Lambertenghi is the young hippy son of an industrialist. The father can not stand the choice of his son and tries in every way, with little success, to interest him in the fate of his company. In the end he decides to entrust Luca to a psychological treatment by a beautiful doctor, Carla Maria. Soon Luca falls in love with the psychologist, who sees in him the possibility of a rapid social climb, hence the title 'escalation'. The two get married, but Luca realizes that his young wife doesn't love him, so he decides to poison her with the mushrooms they picked together during a trip. After killing his wife, Luca practices a mystical ritual on the corpse and then, once burned, spreads her ashes. The police fails to identify Luca as his wife's murderer and so the boy, finally integrated into society, can take the place of his father at the helm of the family business.



Roberto Faenza makes his directing debut in 1968 with a great international success, Escalation, a film that describes the different sides of power through the relationship between a middle-class father and his hippie son.

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