(May contain spoilers)
An attractive young woman is slashed to death in the lift of an apartment block. An exotic dancer, Mizar, discovers the body and is soon a victim herself (she is tied up and drowned in her bath). Having become friends with Andrea Antinori, the building’s architect, two models – Jennifer and Marilyn – move into the deceased dancer’s apartment. The police believe that Andrea is the killer. Meanwhile, Jennifer is being harassed by Adam, her former partner. After being attacked in her bedroom by the masked murderer, Jennifer seeks refuge in her neighbour’s apartment. The good samaritan, Sheena, turns out to be a lesbian who lives with her violin-playing father. Returning to Jennifer’s apartment, the women discover a bloodstained orchid and Adam’s body. Later, Marilyn is stabbed to death in a busy street. Andrea, who happens to be there, gets smeared in her blood and goes into hiding. Meanwhile, Jennifer is suspicious of her other neighbour, a sour-faced woman called Mrs. Moss, who takes comic books called “Killer Man” into her apartment… Continue reading
Pierfrancesco Campanella’s first giallo (also his directorial debut). The plot is about a series of murders among homosexuals, but the erotic element is mostly represented in heterosexual couplings, so no worries there. Starring the always excellent Tomas Arana, with Alida Vali, Gioia Scola, Lorenzo Flaherty, Natasha Hovey and Barbara Scoppa. Continue reading
The atmosphere is ripe for murder at the estate of the recently dead Henry Carter. His heirs are a typically suspicious lot. There’s daughter Isabelle (Evelyn Stewart aka Ida Galli, CASE OF THE SCORPION’S TAIL) who abandoned her father and married beneath her station, her husband Anthony (Peter Baldwin, THE GHOST), her disapproving Aunt Gladys (Marisa Fabbri, FOUR FLIES ON GREY VELVET) and her prank-playing horny son Georgie (Chris Chittel, BEAST IN THE CELLAR), seemingly benevolent cousin Barbara (opera star Anna Moffo), pompous Uncle Lawrence (Quinto Parmeggiani, IDENTIKIT), and wastrel Ted (Giacomo Rossi-Stuart, THE NIGHT EVELYN CAME OUT OF THE GRAVE) who shocks his family with his surprise marriage to Pauline (Beryl Cunningham, SO SWEET SO PERVERSE). When the others are left out of the will and Barbara named the sole heir, Georgie voices what they are all thinking that if something were to happen to Barbara the inheritance would be divided among them. Soon the bodies start piling up and this time they really can’t say the butler (Ballard Berkeley, FAWLTY TOWERS) did it as he’s the first one to go. Continue reading
Two sisters from Austria, Ursula (Barbara Magnolfi) and Dagmar (Stefania D’Amario) check into a lavish seaside hotel in Italy. Still grieving the loss of their recently deceased father, they are warmly welcomed by the hotel’s owner and manager (Vanni Materassi) who invites them to check out the adjoining nightclub. They are introduced to the hilariously awful singer Stella Shining (Yvette Harlow) and the suave and debonair closet junkie Filippo (Marc Porel). It would all be deadly dull if it wasn’t for a mad unseen killer who’s going around raping and murdering the local women with a giant wooden dildo! A subplot involving a drug ring and lots of near hardcore sex fails to spice up things any further. Continue reading
Director Luigi Scattini had previously worked with the beautiful model-turned-actress Zeudi Araya in “The Sinner” (1972) and in a previous film that I have not had the pleasure of viewing. Even though she was constantly typecast as the beautiful barefoot island girl, it was always obvious that Araya was having a good time. Casting “Il Corpo” with such tried-and true talents as Leonard Mann, Enrico Maria Salerno, Carroll Baker and Ms. Araya, it is equally obvious that Scattini had a good time, and the result is a dramatic, slightly erotic thriller that begs to be seen. The story is simple and familiar: Mann comes to work for Salerno and his common-law wife Araya, and with Salerno going away from time to time, Mann and Araya fall for each other, and the classic love triangle develops. From here, though, Scattini takes his characters in not-so-obvious directions and leads them them all down the path toward self-destruction. Continue reading
Cosmotropia de Xam is back with more “arthouse horror” with his latest feature, MALACREANZA: FROM THE DIARY OF A BROKEN DOLL.
JASON COFFMAN wrote:
This film, his follow-up to DIABOLIQUE, is touted as both “arthouse horror” and “experimental giallo,” and while it is similar in tone to DIABOLIQUE, it is even further removed from standard narrative than that film. MALACREANZA only features one actor on screen during its entire running time, and features imagery more traditionally associated with experimental film than narrative features.
Anna (Shivabel) wakes up, nude, near what appears to be an abandoned factory. She wanders around and hears voices that seem to control her. These voices are the only other presences in the film—other than Anna, no actors appear on-screen. The voices taunt and command, as Anna wanders from one bizarre nightmare world to the next, similarly to how the characters in DIABOLIQUE would float from one place to another, but even more abstract in both its narrative structure and visual style. Continue reading
Robert Firsching in All Movie Guide:
Though not a giallo film in the strictest sense, this crime/revenge film merits attention by fans for its genre cast and an unusual approach to familiar themes. Raf Vallone plays anguished father Avanzio Berzaghi, whose 25-year old daughter Donatella has been kidnapped. Donatella has the mind of a toddler, and her beauty and agreeable naivete make her a perfect choice for Milan’s seedy prostitution racket. Frank Wolff is a dedicated Inspector with bad sinuses who shakes down a sleazy pimp and a desperate black prostitute (Beryl Cunningham of The Snake God), as well as visiting scores of local brothels for clues. Continue reading