IMDb > 5 Dolls for an August Moon (1970)
5 bambole per la luna d'agosto
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5 Dolls for an August Moon (1970) More at IMDbPro »5 bambole per la luna d'agosto (original title)

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Overview

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6.0/10   1,230 votes »
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Director:
Writer:
Mario di Nardo (story)
Contact:
View company contact information for 5 Dolls for an August Moon on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
14 February 1970 (Italy) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
A small group of people come to an island to relax but soon find themselves trapped on the island with a murderer in their midst. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
User Reviews:
Wrapped in plastic... See more (34 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)
William Berger ... Prof. Gerry Farrell
Ira von Fürstenberg ... Trudy Farrell (as Ira Furstenberg)

Edwige Fenech ... Marie Chaney
Howard Ross ... Jack Davidson
Helena Ronee ... Peggy Davidson (as Helena Ronée)
Teodoro Corrà ... George Stark (as Teodoro Corrá)
Ely Galleani ... Isabel (as Justine Gall)
Edith Meloni ... Jill Stark
Mauro Bosco ... Charles
Maurice Poli ... Nick Chaney
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Directed by
Mario Bava 
 
Writing credits
Mario di Nardo (story and screenplay)

Produced by
Luigi Alessi .... producer
 
Original Music by
Piero Umiliani 
 
Cinematography by
Antonio Rinaldi (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
Mario Bava 
 
Costume Design by
Giulia Mafai  (as Giuliana Mafai)
 
Makeup Department
Orietta Melaranci .... makeup artist (as Oretta Melaranci)
 
Production Management
Luigi Alessi .... production manager
Alfonso Cucci .... assistant production manager
Adolfo Martello .... assistant production manager (as Rudolfo Martello)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Mario Bianchi .... assistant director
 
Art Department
Giuseppe Aldrovandi .... set designer
Giulia Mafai .... set dresser (as Giuliana Mafai)
 
Sound Department
Leopoldo Rosi .... sound
 
Visual Effects by
Enrico Catalucci .... optical effects (as E. Catalucci)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Gianlorenzo Battaglia .... assistant camera (as Lorenzo Battaglia)
Armando Pietrangeli .... still photographer
Emilio Varriano .... camera operator
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Roberto Ranucci .... assistant costumes designer
 
Editorial Department
Liliana Serra .... assistant editor
 
Other crew
Marisa Agostini .... continuity
Franco Tupini .... production secretary
 

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Additional Details

Also Known As:
"5 bambole per la luna d'agosto" - Italy (original title)
"Island of Terror" - USA (alternative title)
See more »
Runtime:
88 min | USA:78 min | France:90 min | UK:81 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Color (Eastmancolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Agatha Christie's original story was titled "Ten Little Niggers", which had previously been filmed under such official titles as And Then There Were None (1945) and Agatha Christie's 'Ten Little Indians' (1965). The source of the story went uncredited. Mario Bava did not care for that story, but his next feature, A Bay of Blood (1971), was practically a rewrite, on which he enjoyed total control.See more »
Quotes:
Nick Chaney:So what was I telling you?
Marie Chaney:That I'm a dirty whore. That's why I'm taking a shower... at least now I'll be a clean whore.
See more »
Movie Connections:
References La Dolce Vita (1960)See more »
Soundtrack:
Five DollsSee more »

FAQ

Is "Five Dolls for an August Moon" based on a book?
I don't understand the plot. What exactly happened?
See more »
1 out of 1 people found the following review useful.
Wrapped in plastic..., 17 June 2012
Author: Red-Barracuda from Edinburgh, Scotland, UK

Seemingly Mario Bava was not pleased with having to direct this film. He carried out his duties as a director for hire though but despite the presence of the beautiful giallo regular Edwige Fenech, his disinterest to the project shows and the movie is wildly uneven but hugely likable. It's about an inventor who, along with a group of would-be investors, assemble on an island. The investors want a formula from the inventor and are willing to pay big for it but he does not want to sell out. Before long people start being murdered one by one. It's a variation on Agatha Christie's Ten Little Indians.

It has the breezy atmosphere that many late 60's Italian thrillers have. It wasn't until after Dario Argento's The Bird with the Crystal Plumage became an international success that the giallo genre became more direct, aggressively suspenseful and violent. Five Dolls is very much a product of the gialli that came before this. Its lounge music soundtrack and languid nature testify to this. As an actual mystery thriller it's pretty lacking it has to be said. It feels like Bava's contempt for the material is reflected in his complete indifference in creating a suspenseful or thrilling movie. While it's a whodunit with quite a number of murders, they are all committed off-screen. This is not to the film's advantage at all. Characters suddenly die from out of nowhere with no build up. Sometimes it feels like Five Dolls is a lampoon of the genre. Judging by the black humour Bava utilised in the following year's Bay of Blood it is entirely possible that he isn't taking things entirely seriously here either.

What Five Dolls does have though is a beautiful look and feel. This is hardly surprising I suppose seeing as its Bava's trademark. The cinematography is always interesting, with several well composed shots and good use of the beach-front location and villa. While the production design, fashions and cool décor are all appealing. The interest of the film, therefore, is more in watching a chic melodrama involving a group of largely unsympathetic rich people. It works better as this, than as a thriller. Still, it does have some nice macabre touches that would have graced his best films, such as the repeat scene of the murder victims hanging up in the freezer wrapped in plastic; or the shot of crystal balls rolling en mass down a set of stairs and into a bathroom leading us to yet another dead body. But perhaps best of all is the opening party scene which introduces all of the characters. It's campy to the max, with lots of slow zooms into all of the character's faces, while Fenech dances in a crazy sensual way. This sequence, like many others, benefits from the score by Piero Umiliani. It's a very eccentric soundtrack of organ-driven Italo-pop. Five Dolls is certainly a film that favours style over substance.

Five Dolls for an August Moon is not one of Mario Bava's best films but it is among his most charming. Despite the inherent weakness of its plot and mystery-thriller elements there's just something extremely likable about it. It's of its time in the best possible sense.

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