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Strictly Sinatra

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Crooner finds himself embroiled in the local mob activities.

Toni Cocozza (a vocally impressive Hart), an also-ran crooner, tours the not-so-hot-spots of Scotland singing ‘strictly Sinatra’, accompanied by his piano-playing sidekick, Bill (the dependable Armstrong).

One night Cocozza sings for the neighbourhood ‘rat pack’ and wins a new fan club, including frontman Brian Cox. Soon he’s performing favours for them along with the songs and, as he gets sucked deeper into their world, risks losing his true friends and newly-won girlfriend (Macdonald).

Ian Bannen was originally slated to play Bill, but died just as filming started. The film is dedicated to him, but it’s not the best epitaph. Hart, never bad, deserves a breakout film and this isn’t it. Toni just isn’t a hero to root for and the ending’s a classic case of bad timing.

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