The Tough Ones (1976 film)

The Tough Ones (Italian: Roma a mano armata, lit. "Rome at gunpoint") is a 1976 Italian poliziottesco film directed by Umberto Lenzi.

The Tough Ones
Italian film poster
Directed byUmberto Lenzi
Produced by
Screenplay byDardano Sacchetti[2]
Story byUmberto Lenzi[2]
Music byFranco Micalizzi[2]
CinematographyFederico Zanni[2]
Edited byDaniele Alabiso[2]
  • Dania Film
  • Medusa Distribuzione
  • National Cinematografica[1]
Distributed byMedusa Distribuzione
Release date
  • February 25, 1976 (1976-02-25) (Italy)
Running time
95 minutes
Box office₤1.617 billion



Director Umberto Lenzi was offered a script titled Roma ha un segreto (Rome Has a Secret), a spy story set in the popular Roman district Trastevere.[3] Lenzi felt that the script made no sense and trashed the script.[3] He then asked the producer to make a film about the violence that was surrounding Rome at the time. Within a week, Lenzi improvised a script.[3]


The Tough Ones was released on February 25, 1976 in Italy, where it was distributed by Medusa Distribuzione. The film grossed 1,617,361,000 Italian lira.[1]

In the United States, the film was re-titled Brutal Justice and was released on the grindhouse circuit by Aquarius Releasing. For this version, Aquarius founder Terry Levene was responsible for replacing several establishing shots in the film with English-language counterparts filmed around New York City.[4] A second version, also released on VHS, was released by Aquarius under the title Assault with a Deadly Weapon, which featured a new title sequence featuring a skull-faced police officer and credits for non-existent cast and crew members. Roberto Curti criticized this version for being "badly-cut".[4]

The Tough Ones was released uncut and under its original English title on Blu-ray by Grindhouse Releasing in 2019.[5]

See also



  • Curti, Roberto (2013). Italian Crime Filmography, 1968-1980. McFarland. ISBN 0786469765.

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