It was polesitter Lorenzo who shot out ahead and got the holeshot - as the number 99 is oft to do - but Jack Miller (Alma Pramac Racing) kept second from second on the grid as the Aussie got a good start.
Marquez was the biggest winner off the line, moving up from fifth after a crash in qualifying to slot into third, but he wasn't there long...
Ducati at front
Dovizioso struck quickly against the reigning champion before picking off Miller, pushing hard to tag on to the back of his team-mate as Marquez then sliced past the Aussie too - intent on keeping tabs on the Ducati duo at the front.
Unfortunately, disaster struck a lap later for Miller as he slid out at Turn 14.
Crutchlow had pulled free of a squabble and sliced past Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) to get into the position to try and close in on the then-leading trio, and more than made amends for a late crash in qualifying.
Rins, meanwhile, impressed on the softer compound rear tyre to get well in the initial fight and then hold great pace to the flag, not able to stay ahead of Crutchlow but nevertheless holding station in the top five until Lorenzo's late crash saw him take fourth.
"It was important to win here," said Dovizioso as he was joined by Crutchlow and Marquez in front of the unique Misano crowd.
The Italian made it three in a row for Ducati and three Italian winners on race day (Moto2 and Moto 3) with his first Misano win.