PUT THAT BLOODY KNIFE DOWN. It’s Time To Talk #31DaysOfHalloween” Horror!
It’s the month that exists to shock us for #31DaysOfHorror, and time to share some info on a great horror genre you might not know much about!
If you don’t know about the classic Italian “giallo” genre of film shockers, you are missing some of the most suspenseful thrillers ever committed to bloody celluloid!
As you can see from this paperback book, “Giallos” are Italy’s version of “pulp fiction” – lurid thrillers with plenty of sex and violence – but they are also some of the best mystery films ever made!
Oh, they also have some of the wildest titles of all time: like “A Lizard In A Woman’s Skin” for one, and what about this subtle title?
The genre of Italian “giallo” film has resulted in some cinematic classics such as “Suspiria” and “Four Flies On Dead Velvet” – and I will share more about those in a moment….but first, time to explore a few more classics of the genre – starting with this classic title:
“Your Vice Is A Locked Room And Only I Have The Key!”
This cult classic is loosely based on Edgar Allan Poe’s classic tale “The Black Cat”, and is from director Sergio Martino – who also made the classic thriller “Torso”!
Here is the international trailer for “Vice”, but don’t worry: it’s all scenes and images from the film with a classic 70’s giallo soundtrack!
Well, that poster doesn’t leave much to the imagination, does it?
Here’s a brief synopsis: Oliviero is an abrasive drunk who amuses himself by holding drunken orgies at his grand country manor – and no surprise, his wife, played by Actress Anita Strindberg, doesn’t like it much!
Soon, a series of murders rocks Oliviero’s sordid world….and here’s a great fact thanks to IMDB: the title is a reference to Sergio Martino’s earlier giallo “”The Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh”, in which the same phrase appears in a mysterious note apparently sent by a killer!
So, are you getting an idea of just how entertaining and twisted this genre is? And believe me when I tell you – they are very entertaining!
Perhaps the most well-known Giallo Director is the legendary Dario Argento:
Argento’s masterpiece is “Suspiria” starring Jessica Harper, best known for her starring role in Brian DePalma’s “Phantom Of The Paradise”…but Argeno also made such great thrillers as “Tenebrae”:
You can read all about his great movies by clicking on my story here:
Some very well known movie stars appeared in these films – perhaps none more beautiful than “Bond Girl” Claudine Auger:
Aside from starring alongside Sean Connery in “Thunderball”, she starred in a classic “giallo” as well…see it here:
One of the genre’s most controversial films was this classic – with an equally classic title:
“A Lizard In A Woman’s Skin” ended up in court! Yes, a Judge had some big questions about what he saw in the movie. Click here to find out why the Director almost ended up in prison!
As you can see, the “giallo” genre is a movie category with plenty of controversy…another great Director was Lucio Fulci, and yes, he had some wacky film titles too!
Yes, the film “Don’t Torture A Duckling” is a classic Giallo shocker and part of his animal trilogy! Read more here:
And finally, here is a title that doesn’t beat around the bush:
“Strip Nude For Your Killer” may sound like it’s pandering, and – well, it is! But it’s still a great mystery thriller, and you can read more here:
Let me know which of these classic “Giallos” you’ve seen, and what else you ware watching on these #31DaysOfHalloween!
Categories: 70's Films, Artsploitation, Books / Media, Camp Cult Classics, Classic Action Films, Classic Horror, Cult Classics, Euro-Sleaze, Exploitation Films, Grindhouse, JRsploitation, Nudity, Sexploitation Films, Talent / Celebrites
Those titles are a legend in themselves, John. I wonder if anything was ‘lost in translation’? 🙂
Best wishes, Pete.
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Pete, the titles are as good as the films, and yes, I wonder what they really meant in Italian!
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I assume that the majority were just literally translated by someone who didn’t realize how silly they sound in English (speaking as a translator who’s had plenty of experience with that kind of thing). One of the things I find funny about giallos is the stilted dialog. Oh, and my favorite in the genre’s probably Argento’s “Profondo Rosso”/”Deep Red”: interesting story, great music and some wild shots.
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Yes, the dialogue is definitely stilted, and “Deep Red” is a great example of Giallo done right!