the Day of the Cobra (1980)

I'll watch just about anything with the eternally handsome and talented Franco Nero. The Fifth Cord was my first Nero movie and ever since I've been hooked on just about anything with him on the bill. His on screen presence is magnetic and even when he does schlock his performance always stands above the rest. I'd been wanting to dive into his Euro-Crime thrillers and this Enzo Castellari (Inglorious Bastards, Keoma, 1990: The Bronx Warriors) flick seemed like a good place to start.

A third rate gumshoe formerly known as "the Cobra" now getting payed to follow cheating wives and finding lost pets. He was once the best but after spending three years in jail thanks to super criminal "Kandinsky" his career and life in general has suffered. He's rehired to solve the murder of an American narcotics agent by his former employer. They know that Kandinsky is responsible for the murder and a big time drug ring. Who better to go after this guy than the man with a personal vendetta.

Entertaining but still somehow lacked the seamless grit that Italy's crime movies are famous for. The story was a bit routine but thanks to the great acting and a karate chopping transvestite it maintained itself nicely. I read that it's very similar to another Castellari team up called High Crimes, which I haven't seen yet. Based on what I can guess this movie seems like a watered down version of it.

Sybil Danning was especially sexy in this movie. The boy who played Franco Nero's son is his son in real life, and the unseen Kandinsky was played by an uncredited Michele Soavi, the director of Cemetery Man, the Church and StageFright (1987). The theme song "I Don't Give a Damn, I Am the Cobra" is enough the carry this movie's coolness in my book.

The Day of the Cobra is a decent entry in the epic genre of Poliziotteschi. Not the best, but better than a lot that's out there. If you're a fan of Nero and Euro-Crime, I say give it a go!


  1. jervaise brooke hamsterJuly 26, 2010 at 4:12 AM

    Scumbalina, i want to bugger you my dear.

  2. well... I don't quite know how to respond to that, Jervaise....thanks?

  3. I had a composite version of this a good soul made for me years ago, merging the image from a German DVD to an English-language tape source, and I finally watched it tonight. Looking for reviews but finding few of them, I discovered your blog. Great writing, especially on movies that, well, have little written about them. Way to fill a niche!!

    Here's a question on this movie no one else seems to be asking.


    So, while everyone loves to remember the big reveal about the transvestite character (which I saw as a cheeky homage to FREEBIE AND THE BEAN), I went back through the disc a couple times after my viewing and sure enough, it's not the same person. Besides the fact that, to the best of my knowledge, Licenia Lentini (who plays the two-faced Lola) is not transgender in real life, watching on a decent-sized screen should reveal that her "male" self is being played by a stuntman with only the slightest facial resemblance. I mean, is everyone in a compact to ignore this clumsy Texas switch?

    Anyhow fun review, and I look forward to catching up with more of them.

    1. Hi Marc, thanks for your kind words, I'm familiar with your involvement in this world so I'm honored to have a blog worthy of your gaze. I seem to vaguely remember that discrepancy but it's been five years, I think I'm due for a rewatch! Thanks for bringing it to my attention.