Paolo Villaggio is sadly gone last week...you know is my favorite italian actor, along with Ugo Tognazzi, but why Paolo is in this list ? Because in 1974 he and Nanni Loy made this heavy censored movie about a black basketball player, the late model/dancer/actor/singer Sterling St. Jacques.
Bonfiglio (Villaggio) was sent to attend to industrial business in the US by his employer, a wealthy Commendatore Brancia, italian for Commander, from Busto Arsizio, Lombardia. The figure of Commenda Brancia is losely shaped around Giovannino Borghi, Ignis Varese owner, Varese made 10 Euro Championship finals in a row, won 5 European Champions Cup, who was involved in basketball just for local rivalry against Cantù (2 ECCup) and Milan (3 ECCups, first italian team to won).
Already located there and invited to attend at NY's N.I.T., Bonfiglio is in charge of hiring player from fictional Washington University, Ben Ferguson (St. Jacques) for FRIGOR, another link to Borghi, the Brancia basketball team, which is in need of a typical 70's player, 20 or more points and 20 or more rebounds.
Bonfiglio must deal with italo-american Alex Borghi (Rizzo) Ferguson's agent, despite his hate for this person. Ferguson is available to join Brancia's team, but before leaving for Italy, he forces Bonfiglio to accompany him on a tour across the United States to settle some personal matters. During this journey, John discovers that the N.I.T. best player actually has not only the interest on basketball, but also in art, music, civil rights and politics. Sadly during the last game in Atlanta, home of the Hawks with Washington University versus Virginia Tech Ferguson was kill in a riot, his blood flood in the court.
The movie runs orignally for 112 minutes, but censorship cut short to 85...