Thursday, January 29, 2015

Lamberto Bava Week: A Blade in the Dark

Hey you crazy kids welcome back for Day 3 of Lamberto Bava Week and it is time for another giallo film. Again, if you are unaware Giallo is the term for Italian thriller which usually follow gruesome murder mysteries, unlikely victims, less than likely sleuths and always a morbid back-story for the killer. Such as it was with Dario Argento's Deep Red and Tenbre, this film is no exception to graphic deaths but is vastly tame for a horror movie's standards.
This is A Blade in the Dark.

Accidents will happen in the kitchen.

Our movie opens with two darn kids daring each other to go down a creepy fruit cellar and suddenly overpowered to neither be seen or heard from again. Working well into the nights composer Bruno (Andrea Occhipinti of Congquest, Bolero, Miranda, The Jeweller's Shop and The Sea Inside) is busting his hump on his latest creation as eerie mood music for a horror movie when he decides to rent a secluded villa so he make work in peace. This manor is enormous and inhabited by many. True to giallo modus operandi, a beautiful young woman Katia (Valeria Cavalli of Bomber,The Tenors, La bocca, Blood and Dust, The First Circle and Mother of Tears) has disappeared and may have been murdered in the villa itself.

So naturally rather that bringing one's suspicions to the cops Bruno proceeds to his own investigations. He ends up dragging Julia (Lara Lamberti of Street Dance, Red Sonja, Garibaldi the General, Aenigma and A Case for Two) his girlfriend that came to visit purely for some implied sex sequences and she is convinced Bruno is putting so much time and effort into finding this girl that clearly he boinking her as well. The investigation points to the horror movie in question. Bruno composes a score about an abused child taunted by bullies that tossed his or her tennis ball down a flight of stairs leading to a darken cellar and he begins to wonder what else this movie will reveal. With a heaping helping of red herrings, dead ends and more murders, Bruno may not be the best investigator on the job, given he has no DAMN experience at it.

All I know is Chopsticks, they're bound to figure out I am lying.

A film that seems to channel Argento as much as Hitchcock the murders have a sense of flair and style as there are no two alike. The clock is ticking down and the cast is being thinned out. Can Bruno figure out who the murder is, why the need for so much blood and what was the reasons behind it all? Is he up for the task? Should he strengthen his skills by playing 221B Baker Street and/or Clue?

Just a few notations on the film now. I was surprised on the control of Bava not showing us extremely graphic death scenes similar to his mentor Dario Argento. That man likes to make a statement that he has been there and it is an elaborate and over the top death scenario. Very brief in the nudity which again I was flabbergasted with considering the incredible collection of ladies for this film. The cat and mouse game was well delivered and really allowed tension to build up. Hell the composure by Guido and Maurizio De Angelis is astounding, offering so many emotions to come flooding from the viewers as suspense builds up over and over again.

My one complaint is I felt the film drug on a bit to meet the obligational release requirement demanding that of a 90 minute or more film. Filmed in 35mm Spherical via Eastman Color, this film does give good suspense, some horrendous deaths and in general some good thrills, chills and blood spills. While I don't recommend you sit down with the kiddies to watch it, again it lack a lot of foul language, nudity or really repugnant deaths.

Green doesn't flatter me like I thought!!!