The corpses are piling up at St. Hilda's School for Girls, leaving top cop Michael Rennie with more than the usual suspects. Is the killer Mark Damon? Peeping Tom Luciano Pigozzi? Or ... See full summary »
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Alberto de Mendoza
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The corpses are piling up at St. Hilda's School for Girls, leaving top cop Michael Rennie with more than the usual suspects. Is the killer Mark Damon? Peeping Tom Luciano Pigozzi? Or someone else? Mario Bava's original script "Cry Nightmare" was entrusted to director Antonio Margheriti. Be sure to see the Italian version which runs 98 mins. (the film was hacked by 15 minutes and retitled by American International Pictures to show mainly at drive-ins). Written by
Not bad, not great...okay diversion if you're bored enough
When I heard Mario Bava wrote the screenplay and that this was something of a body count giallo, I bought the DVD expecting a typically atmospheric '60s Italian film with great thrills, suspense and early gore. Maybe I expected too much.
A terrific opening title theme, "Nightmare," gets things off to an exciting start. Unfortunately, the film then bogs itself down in endless footage of squirrelly, bland females acting silly and flaky (behavior that is endearing to women but annoying to men). At long last, a few of them then endure some of the mildest, least violent and tidiest "deaths" ever seen.
This is not a brutal shocker like the earlier, "Blood and Black Lace." If anything, an irritating, bouncy humor persists throughout, leading me to suspect this was intended for the Sunday matinée crowd.
Some of the older cast members are quite good, including the aforementioned Damon. Michael Rennie shines in a later role and the school administrators are all suitably mysterious.
Not great, not bad, just so-so. While away a couple of hours with it, if you're in the right mood.
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