Sylvester Stallone directed and produced as well as starred in Paradise Alley about three brothers named Carboni. Sly is a gladhanding con man of the first order. He might even have conned a 4F for himself to get out military service in World War II. Flat feet was a mighty subjective deferment back in the day.
Brother Armand Assante served however and now walk with a limp and is a bitter man now working as an undertaker. The youngest is a giant of a man Lee Canalito who works as an iceman. Carrying those blocks of ice up several tenement stories in Hell's Kitchen will develop your biceps.
When at Paradise Alley which is a local underground nightclub/sports arena Canalito wins an arm wrestling match with a local wrestler managed by the club owner Kevin Conway. It occurs first to Stallone that Canalito's physique and Rocky like training and dedication might be a way out of Hell's Kitchen. It starts to look that way, but the brothers themselves change in interesting ways.
I have to single out Frank McRae former football player who delivers a memorable performance as a down and out wrestler who lives on Conway's pocket change. His last scene with Stallone is memorable.
So is Conway. He's one nasty little customer, constantly using derogatory ethnic terms. Stallone made a very good point about the ethnic rivalries in working class neighborhoods like Hell's Kitchen. In the end Canalito embarrasses Conway, humiliates him more likely in a way that he will never be an intimidating figure again.
Paradise Alley might not have gathered the enduring following that Rocky did. But it is still a fine and enduring film.
Action / Drama
Action / Drama
It's 1946 in Hell's Kitchen in New York City. Cosmo Carboni, the eldest of the three Carboni brothers, is lamenting what he sees as them not living up to their potential. Big talking Cosmo hustles and panhandles for money. Brooding Lenny Carboni, an injured veteran whose sullen attitude stems from his time in the war, is an undertaker. And youngest Victor Carboni, the simple muscle-man who wouldn't hurt a fly unless he's annoyed, is an iceman. Victor looks to Lenny and his Chinese-American girlfriend Susan Chow as his voices of reason. After Victor holds his own against wrestler Frankie the Thumper in an arm wrestling match, Frankie who is seen as the strongest man in the neighborhood, and after seeing the lucrative wrestling matches - which are more like street fights without rules - at the underground nightclub called Paradise Alley, Cosmo gets it into his head that wrestling may be Victor's calling and a way for them all to get out of Hell's Kitchen for good. The brothers would act...
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February 11, 2015 at 03:03 AM