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Four Flies on Grey Velvet (1971)
"4 mosche di velluto grigio" (original title)

6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 3,626 users  
Reviews: 45 user | 86 critic

A musician is stalked by an unknown killer who's blackmailing him for an accidential killing of another stalker. But is everything what it appears to be?

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Title: Four Flies on Grey Velvet (1971)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Roberto Tobias
...
Nina Tobias
...
Gianni Arrosio (as Jean Pierre Marielle)
...
Godfrey 'God'
Aldo Bufi Landi ...
Pathologist
Calisto Calisti ...
Carlo Marosi
Marisa Fabbri ...
Amelia, the maid
Oreste Lionello ...
The Professor
Fabrizio Moroni ...
Mirko
Corrado Olmi ...
Porter
Stefano Satta Flores ...
Andrea
Laura Troschel ...
Maria (as Costanza Spada)
...
Dalia
Dante Cleri ...
Coffin Salesman
Guerrino Crivello ...
Rambaldi, the neighbor
Edit

Storyline

Roberto, a drummer in a rock band, keeps receiving weird phone calls and being followed by a mysterious man. One night he manages to catch up with his persecutor and tries to get him to talk but in the ensuing struggle he accidentally stabs him. He runs away, but he understands his troubles have just begun when the following day he receives an envelope with photos of him killing the man. Someone is killing all his friends and trying to frame him for the murders... Written by Giancarlo Cairella <vertigo@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

When the flies start to crawl, so will your flesh... See more »

Genres:

Mystery | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

25 August 1972 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

4 Flies on Grey Velvet  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A slow-motion bullet effect is used in the film, pre-dating The Matrix and many Hong Kong action films. See more »

Crazy Credits

You have just seen Four Flies on Grey Velvet. See more »

Connections

Featured in Der Fall der vier Fliegen (2012) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
One of Argento's WEIRDEST. Definitely NOT one of his worst!
9 July 2001 | by (Seattle, WA. USA) – See all my reviews

"Four Flies On Grey Velvet" is surely an odd, truly bizarre film, even by Dario Argento standards. In my opinion however, it most definitely is not a bad film, much less one of Argento's worst. Much of what is said about the film, by critics and fans alike, seems (to me) to wrongly condemn it. I definitely can understand why one might be frustrated by this film, but I don't believe that's a reason to reject it completely. Some may feel the acting and/or story isn't all that good. I would respectfully disagree. I feel the acting is strange and aloof, but I believe that it works in favor of the film; and the story is confusing, but that is typical for an Argento film, and as a viewer, I appreciate not being handed all of the answers on a platter. Perhaps what repels many viewers is consistently being displaced espacially within the film context; that is to say one (the viewer and/or the characters) doesn't necessarily always know where one is within the "reality" of the film or how one got there. Here, in what is perhaps Argento's most abstract film to date, the director makes some very bold, disarming choices with editing; choices I believe serve a greater purpose and add chillingly to the effectiveness of the film. For instance, the sequence in which the protagonist (Michael Brandon) is driving to the office of a private investigator. Shots of him driving in his car to the office are quickly intercut with gliding POV shots approaching the office building, going up the stairs, nearing the office door. The effect is that of feeling as if he is literally driving up the stairs and down the hallway to the office door, creating a tense and strangely humorous sequence of events. This editing technique, prevalent throughout the film, is surely a forceful presence and I suppose could turn off some viewers. Regardless of the editing, the atmosphere and visual punch of the film is pure Argento, albeit an Argento who was still developing his technique and discovering his style. There are many beautiful and stunning visuals to be appreciated, including the violent, shocking ending sequence and a very creepy chase scene in an otherworldly city park. My favorite visual flourish in this film is the reoccuring nightmare had by the protagonist, in which a Middle Eastern execution is taking place in a bleached out desert dreamscape; thoroughly chilling. A frantic, highly enjoyable score from the master Ennio Morricone adds greatly to the proceedings as well. I really like this film, despite whatever flaws it may have, and have but one question for anyone who thinks "Four Flies On Grey Velvet" is (one of) Argento's worst... "Have you seen "The Five Days Of Milan" or his "Phantom of The Opera"?

Definitely not for everyone's tastes, but a certain must for any Argento fan, Euro-horror fan, or anyone who just really wants to be daring and see something totally different.


19 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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