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Alberto De Martino
"Weekend Murders" perfectly summarizes all the reasons why Italian gialli-movies made between 1970 and 1980 are my absolute favorite type of horror flicks! Surely this little flick steals ideas of several other classics, surely it's incredibly absurd and far- fetched, and surely it isn't that well-made But, come on, you just have to discover how much fun and exhilaration this crazy little whodunit thriller provides! "Weekend Murders" is basically a spoof of an Agatha Christie story, particularly "Ten Little Indians/And Then There Were None", and thus definitely not your standard type of giallo, however the highly imaginative murder methods and bizarrely eccentric characters are maintained. And then there's something else that usually never features in gialli, namely lots and lots of humor! Director Michele Lupo mostly known for his numerous Terence Hill & Bud Spencer action/comedy vehicles marvelously succeeds in narrating the tale of jealousy, family hatred and murder in a very light-headed fashion, with special thanks to a handful of delightfully funny dialogs and a cast full of respectable names with (hidden) comedy talents. Gastone Moschin, for example, whom I only knew from the raw and violent crime thriller "Milano Calibro .9", here demonstrates his comedy skills together with the textbook British Lance Percival. Speaking of textbook British, "Weekend Murders" is probably the only Italian film that successfully manages to look authentically British (aside from the dubbing) with gloomy land houses, stereotypically well-mannered characters and oppressed humor. The film creatively opens somewhere halfway in the plot, in fact. When a lifeless body is discovered in the sandpit of a golf course, local police sergeant Aloisius Thorpe reminds his Scotland Yard colleague that this is already the third vicious murder in three days. So we go back in time and get acquainted with the remaining members of the Carter family and their partners. They have gathered in the old family home for the reading of the will of their deceased patriarch. Like often the case with inheritances and greedy relatives, most of them aren't too happy with the outcome. Soon after the first murder takes place and this indirectly leads to what I personally find the most hilarious part of the movie. For you see, the first victim is Peter butler, so one of the characters makes the incredibly dry and witty remark: "Well, at least this time nobody can say that the butler did it". Anyways, more murders follow, but Sergeant Thorpe certainly isn't as dim-witted as he looks and impressively gets closer and closer to capturing the killer. For my liking, the body count easily could (and should) have been a bit higher, but I was pleasantly surprised by the ingenious unfolding of the mystery and by the revelation of the killer's identity + modus operandi. If all this isn't persuasive enough just yet, "Weekend Murders" also has an awesome score, with a fantastic reworking of the catchy classical music by Pyotr Tchaikovsky, and stars a few couple of really ravishing actresses (Ida Gallo, Anna Mofo, Beryl Cunningham, Orchidea de Santis). It exists on DVD, what are you waiting for?
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