I FIDANZATI DELLA MORTE (ENGAGED TO DEATH) (1957, 2017)
Run Time: 1:33:00
Director: Romolo Marcellini
Restoration and Distribution: Rodaggio Film
Writers: Giuseppe De Santis, Nicolò Ferrari, Jacques Rémy, Franco Solinas.
Art: Lorenzo Eroticolor
Key Cast: Rik Battaglia, Sylva Koscina, Margit Nünke, Gustavo Rojo, Hans Albers
Also starring the motorcycle champions: Geoff Duke, Libero Liberati, Dickie Dale, Albino Milani, Bill Lomas, Ken Kavanagh, Keith Campbell, Stanley Woods, Enrico Lorenzetti, Reg Armstrong, Pierre Monneret, Walter Zeller
Testimonials and Interviews: Giacomo Agostini, Carlo Ubbiali, Paul d’Orleans, Melissa Holbrook Pierson, Livio Lodi, Roberto Totti, Paolo Sormani, Roberto Parodi
Rodaggio is a film distribution company based in Italy promoting independent, rare and forgotten movies, books and art related to the motorcycle culture. It has been distributing movies such as The Best Bar in America, The Greasy Hands Preachers and Ahora Si Llego! and has been working in close partnership with brands and motorcycle themed events such as Deus, Metzeler-Pirelli, The Motorcycle Film Festival, The Cafe Racer Festival, The Reunion, Tottimotori, the Milano-Taranto commemoration road race and many others. In 2015 and 2016 it created for Metzeler a 48 hours no stop motorcycle themed movies marathon that took place during the Eicma days, in Milan. With the project to bring back to life the 1957 movie “I fidanzati della morte” Rodaggio Film has involved authoritative testimonials from the motorcycle world such as Giacomo Agostini, Melissa Holbrook Pierson, Carlo Ubbiali, Paul d’Orleans, Lorenzo Eroticolor and engaged a community of thousands of motorcyclists from all over the world to support the restoration of the film. The movie is now going to be internationally redistributed in its original version, with subtitles available in English, French, Spanish, German, Portuguese, and Spanish.
A tale of love, rivalry and passion set in the 50s, in the madcap world of motorcycle speed races, shot on the occasion of the main competitions of that time, such as Monza’s Moto GP and the last edition of the legendary Milano-Taranto race. With also very rare footage of the Moto Guzzi wind tunnel and factories. The film features, alongside popular actors Rik Battaglia and Sylva Koscina, many of the most important champions of those years: Geoffrey Duke, Libero Liberati, Bill Lomas, Enrico Lorenzetti, Reg Armstrong, Stanley Woods, Ken Cavanagh, Dickie Dale, Thomas Campbell, Pierre Monneret, Albino Milani, Walter Zeller, Bruno Francisci, all of them riding amazing Moto Guzzi, Gilera, Mondial and Norton bikes with the so charming and dangerous dustbin fairings that were going to be banned in 1958.
About the restoration:
“I fidanzati della morte” is a movie shot in the motorcycle racing world by Romolo Marcellini, famous for his Oscar nomineé 1960 documentary “The Great Olympics”. The film has been forgotten for nearly 60 years. After its first release in 1957 it literally vanished without leaving a trace, except from some books and articles reminding of it as the “first great motorcycling movie”. It took the Rodaggio Film two years to recover the reels and to retrace the film rights history. The restoration started on a positive copy coming from the main italian film archive. After some time the precious original negative, once thought lost in a fire, has been found in laboratory in Rome. Unluckily the film material was partially burned, but most of it was in good condition and has been used as the main reference for the restoration process. The film has been first phisically repaired, then digitally scanned, cleaned frame by frame and color corrected. The sound has been digitally restored and improved as well. All the restoration process has been completed in the world famous Immagine Ritrovata Laboratory, in Bologna.
A movie like no other in its genre, recovered and restored after 60 years from its release thanks to a successful crowdfunding campaign with donors from 22 Countries, which bears unique witness to the international motorcycling’s golden age and to an exceptional season of Italian excellence, innovations and challenges in the thrilling world of two wheels.
The full film is available for purchase on DVD and download on the website (below).
Purchase and view the VIDEO ON DEMAND.
Subtitles available in English, French, German, Portuguese, and Spanish.