A married man has a brief affair, then goes back to his wife and children. His jilted mistress, believing that if he had no more family he'd come back to her, sets fire to his house, hoping... See full summary »
A married man has a brief affair, then goes back to his wife and children. His jilted mistress, believing that if he had no more family he'd come back to her, sets fire to his house, hoping to kill them. The man, unsuccessfully trying to rescue them, is horribly burned. After he undergoes an operation to reconstruct his face, he begins to plot his revenge against his former mistress. Written by
First of all, this is an English language film, so the title "Pyro" is appropriate. The film was made in Spain, though; with generous location scenes, it's a lovely setting. But, back to the title. "Pyro" is short for "Pyromaniac", or someone who possesses a compulsive urge to start fires. The lead characters in this film - engineer "Vance Pierson" (Barry Sullivan) and beautiful widow "Laura Blanco" (Martha Hyer) are not pyromaniacs. The motives for starting fires in the story are not those of a pyromaniac. Only little "Isabella" shows a brief moment of "Pyro"-type behavior.
Producer Sidney W. Pink's original title "The Phantom of the Ferris Wheel" was much better.
In flashback The story is "told" by carnival attendee Fernando Hilbeck (as Julio), who becomes an associate of Mr. Sullivan, an admirer of the "Ferris Wheel". Once introduced, we see Sullivan, who appears to be happily married, meet and succumb to Ms. Hyer's seductive charms. Hyer was a model for aging gracefully, looking better in her 40s than she did in her 20s; with her fiery red shirt and black leather pants, she is irresistible. When Sullivan won't give up his wife and daughter, Hyer decides to play with fire...
The story boils down to one about infidelity and revenge, but there is a slight hint of supernatural possession in the script. Mr. Fink coordinates his "Spanish Gothic" story elements smoothly. Later on, the film adopts elements of horror. Sullivan and Hyer perform admirably, resisting the urge to overact. Mr. Hilbeck and the Spanish supporting cast are outstanding. Watch for a young Soledad Miranda (as Liz) to appear late in the third act. Beautiful women of all types can't seem to keep their hands off Barry Sullivan.
****** Pyro (5/64) Sidney W. Pink : Julio Coll ~ Barry Sullivan, Martha Hyer, Fernando Hilbeck, Soledad Miranda
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