Vito Ribera, a famous Sicilian bandit, has slowly watched his power disappear: The losses inflicted on his gang by the armed forces have inexorably condemned him, first to seek an escape route in the mountains and then to leave the country.
Counting on the protection of other Mafiosi, he is also abandoned by them and by his most trusted companions. With the promise of a way off the island, during a stormy night he is lead by a Mafia chief to the home of a quiet and fearful inhabitant of a Sicilian village: bringing with him his lieutenant, Michele Galardo. In the home of don Luigino, Vito notices that the promise of a way out is nothing but a trap to deliver him to the authorities and that the real traitor is his right-hand man, Michele.
Vito, by nature impulsive and irrational, reacts to the betrayal not with rage or rebellion but with a curious sense of resignation which leads him to compare himself to Jesus Christ, up to the point where he allows himself to be deliberately killed.
“Amato has been nurturing directorial ambitions for years (…) (and) getting around (…) he also has his own bandit, after the ones by Castellani, Rosi, De Seta. Despite the subject matter (which offers up some interesting ideas) it’s nothing more than a conventional melodrama full of the typical traits of the genre, from the bandit’s wife to his death by betrayal, based on the story of Giuliano (…)” (Anonymous, “New Cinema Spectator”, 30/31, april 1962),
“Amato nutre ambizioni registiche da anni (…) (e) orecchiando-orecchiando (…) si è fatto anche lui il suo bandito, dopo quelli di Castellani, Rosi, De Seta. Nonostante il soggetto (che offriva qualche spunto interessante), si tratta di un convenzionale melodramma pieno di ingredienti abituali al genere, dalla donna del bandito alla morte su tradimento, basato sulla storia di Giuliano (…)”. (Anonimo, “Nuovo Spettatore Cinematografico”, 30/31, aprile 1962).