Hey folks we are back in black for Day 3 of Giallo Journeys. Now if you are even slightly hip to Italian movies, you know you have seen a director with the name Sergio attached to it. For Sergio Leone, it's the Man with No Name trilogy. For Sergio Cobucci, it is for Django and Navajo Joe. Yes oddly enough we have a giallo film with director Sergio Martino (Torso, The Mountain of the Cannibal God, 2019: After the Fall of New York, The Scorpion with Two Tails, Hands of Steel and Rally) This is Blade of the Ripper a.k.a. The Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh a.k.a. The Next Victim!a.k.a. Next!
|No, I am not Audrey Hepburn.|
Oh foreign mass distribution, your titles are meant to confuse the unsuspecting and gullible. Our story opens with a guy in a long black car cruising for either a night on the town or possibly a victim. It could go either way at this point and ladies when your "John" parks you mere yards from the airport lanes, he is there to drown out your screams one way or the other.
We then follow Julie (Edwige Fenech of Desert of Fire, All the Colors of the Dark, Your Vice Is a Locked Room and Only I Have the Key, Lover Boy, Stripe Nude for Your Killer, Sex with a Smile, A Policewoman on the Porno Squad, A Policewoman in New York, Phantom of Death and Hostel: Part II), the wife of a U.S. Ambassador, socialite and heiress to a vast fortune and ambassador hubby Neil Wardh (Alberto de Mendo of El Jefe, Delusions of Grandeur, Horror Express, The House on Garibaldi Street, Seven Dangerous Girls, So Feared a Hell and Tapas) as they have just returned to Vienna.(in Austria if some folk are not aware) The couple puts on a great public face of mutual love and understanding but behind closed doors, Neil is a workaholic and Julie is less than faithful to her marital vows. If he divorces her, he gets none of her inheritance but... maybe if she was to have say an accident, and then his money troubles and work life ends.
|The winds are grabby and rapey too..|
Bogged down in work, Neil sends Julie home in a registered car. The car is stopped as a cop checks their ID to clarify who they are as they are looking for a serial killer that just struck hours ago calling him the "Sex Fiend". My mind immediately went to Gene Simmons is the killer but Kiss was on tour when this film was made so I was bummed.
Barely seven minutes into the film and already a death scene and mildly randy sex scene of heavy petting and a topless sequence so yup may not want the younglings around for this flick. Also an FYI, Edwige Fenech seems to be the buxom brunette bombshell that has made her share of risque films ranging from erotic horror to a softcore pornography so not really offering a wider acting range.
|Glimpse of a girl.|
Attending a social party she is introduced to George (George Hilton of Guns for Dollars, The Devil with Seven Faces, My Dear Killer, All the Colors of the Dark, Return of Halleluja and The African Deal) they seem to hit it off as the drunk girls dancing start stripping each other and get into a catfight. Yeah this is a hedonistic flick already but Julie is being tailed by her ex-lover Jean (Ivan Rassimov of Sacrifice, Jungle Holocaust, Beyond the Door II and Eaten Alive!) who has issues with sexuality, overpowering and in general, kind of a dick. Hubby slaps Jean and Jean just laughs and walks away. The killings continue and Julie starts thinking it could be George, Jean or even Neil that is the killer. She starts trying to piece it together as the bodies piling up.
The musical scores range from these deep disturbing organ composure to these light-hearted, jaunty orchestral numbers. Setting the tone bringing the theme that is sinister one minute and frolicsome the next. It is bloody, eerie and copious amount of nudity of which most folk assume with every giallo film. Not an amazing flick but not the worse one of this genre I have ever seen.
|Ah, the old "I'm sleeping and not interested in sex," fake sleep.|