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. Read More »
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. Read More »
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. Read More »
Francesco Barilli – Il profumo della signora in nero AKA The Perfume of the Lady in Black [+Extra] (1974)
Silvia Hacherman (Mimsy Farmer) is an industrial scientist who is completely devoted to her job. She has been going out with the handsome Roberto (Maurizio Bonuglia) for a little over four months, but he is understandably perturbed by the fact that she seems to value her work more than him. One night, while attending, with Roberto, a party at the home of a renowned African professor (Jho Jenkins), his discussion of voodoo rituals and human sacrifices seems to unroot a memory deeply buried within her psyche. She begins to hallucinate, seeing disturbingly vivid images of her mother, who died under uncertain circumstances. As the hallicunations become more frequent and more lifelike, Silvia begins to lose her grip on reality as her sanity slips away… Throw into the mix phantom girls, grisly murders, mysterious gift shops and a possible conspirary involving her boyfriend, and you have the makings of an incredibly baffling psycho-shocker that, while following some of the giallo genre’s conventions, is too anarchic a piece to fit comfortably into that particular category.
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Representing the trashier side of European exploitation, this Dick Randall produced Italian/German giallo is the kind of film that, lacking style, substance or budget, instead throws in everything bar the kitchen sink in a bid to attract audiences.
The big gimmick is the presence of Humphrey Bogart-a like Robert Sacchi as the detective in charge of investigating the a series of call-girl murders. He can’t really act – or doesn’t get the chance to – but does make for a passable Bogart, with the look and mannerisms down pat. Read More »
Hélène Cattet & Bruno Forzani – L’étrange couleur des larmes de ton corps AKA The Strange Colour Of Your Body’s Tears (2013)
Some movies are watched. “The Strange Color Of Your Body’s Tears” is a movie you live inside. This new film from directors Helene Cattet and Bruno Forzani touches you repeatedly, inappropriately, from the front and, delightfully, from the rear. To synopsize the film is folly, though it will be fun to see viewers try. This is the magic that Cattet and Forzani have weaved from their debut effort “Amer,” a hypnotic trip down the giallo rabbit hole. Very few filmmakers today are working with a radical new vocabulary, but Cattet and Forzani are using genre of the past to toss us, shouting, into the future. Read More »
Sergio Martino – Il tuo vizio è una stanza chiusa e solo io ne ho la chiave aka Your Vice Is a Locked Room and Only I Have the Key (1972)
There are three key ingredients that make an excellent giallo production. First, you need a drop-dead-gorgeous starlet that will readily take at least two showers in front of the camera, naked of course, and during the course of the film will not shy away from further revealing her “acting skills”. Second, you need a good amount of red paint, preferably not the Ferrari-red type. And third, you need a relatively good mystery story complimented with a few catchy tunes to bring that extra bit of chill. Now imagine that you throw in the mix one of the sexiest European stars to ever grace the exploitation genre canvas-Edwige Fenech, a legendary Italian director-Sergio Martino, and a script based on a short story by celebrated writer Edgar Alan Poe…and there you have it…Il Tuo vizio e una stanza chiusa e solo ion e ho la chiave a.k.a Your Vice is a Locked Room and Only I have the Key (1972), a spectacular giallo production that mixes all the right ingredients with just about the right amount of style we pointed out above.
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