The Case of the Scorpion's Tail (1971)
"La coda dello scorpione" (original title)

Not Rated  |   |  Mystery, Thriller  |  16 August 1971 (Italy)
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The Case of the Scorpion's Tail begins with the mysterious death of a millionaire and spirals into the murder of his suddenly rich wife, which draws the attention of a dogged investigator, who follows a trail of blood to the bitter end.



(story) (as Eduardo M. Brochero) , (screenplay) (as Eduardo M. Brochero) , 2 more credits »
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Complete credited cast:
George Hilton ...
Peter Lynch
Anita Strindberg ...
Cléo Dupont
Alberto de Mendoza ...
John Stanley
Ida Galli ...
Lisa Baumer (as Evelyn Stewart)
Lara Florakis
Inspector Stavros
Tom Felleghy ...
Mr. Brenton
Luis Barboo ...
Lisa Leonardi ...
Hostess (as Annalisa Nardi)
Tomás Picó ...
George Barnet


A plane explodes; one passenger is a London businessman who's insured for $1 million. His unfaithful wife is the beneficiary. The insurance agency arranges to pay, but also assigns their top investigator, Peter Lynch, to sniff out irregularities. The widow goes to Greece for the payout; Peter follows her, introducing himself. He becomes her protector and her companion, but the relationship is short lived. She has decided to take the money in cash and plans an immediate trip to Tokyo. Is she guilty of her husband's murder, and if so, who's her accomplice? An Athenian police inspector, an Interpol agent, and a French photojournalist join Lynch in the investigation. Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Mystery | Thriller


Not Rated | See all certifications »





Release Date:

16 August 1971 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Scorpion's Tail  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


ESP 19,571,993 (Spain)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


70mm blow-up version released in Spain. See more »


[first lines]
Lisa Baumer: Hello, this is Lisa. Yes, it's alright. Yes, his plane will be leaving in a few minutes. You know I'm dying to see you. Soon, hurry darling, I'll be waiting. Bye.
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Referenced in Eugénie (1973) See more »

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User Reviews

Italian/Spanish Giallo dealing with a killing spree with several suspects
1 September 2011 | by See all my reviews

¨The Case of the Scorpion's Tail¨ begins with the mysterious death of a billionaire when a plane explodes and spirals into the killing ; as the newspapers publicize : ¨Air disaster , nor survivors¨ . As his suddenly rich wife (Evelyn Stewart or Ida Galli) because he's insured for one million of dollars . Being the unfaithful spouse the beneficiary as the insurance agency arranges to pay . It draws the attention of various sleuths to sniff out suspects . A dogged and top investigator named Peter Lynch (George Hilton) , a Greek police (Luigi Pistilli), a Interpol agent ( Alberto De Mendoza ) and a journalist ( Anita Strindberg) , follow a wake of blood to the bitter final . Meanwhile Peter Lynch becomes companion and protector the widow .

Sergio Martino's great success is compellingly directed with well staged murders plenty of startling visual content , though was submitted to limited censorship in Spain . This is a customary slasher where the intrigue, tension, suspense appear threatening and lurking in every room , corridors and luxurious interior and exterior . The picture packs atmospheric blending of eerie thrills and creepy chills combined with a twisted finale . It displays lots of guts and blood but it seems pretty mild compared to today's gore feasts . It's a solid movie , a thrilling story plenty of suspense and intrigue in which the victims seem to be continuous . The staged killings are the high points of the movie , they deliver the goods plenty of screams, shocks and tension . The intriguing moments are compactly made and fast moving ; as the film itself takes place from various points of sights . It packs tension, shocks , thrills, chills and lots of blood . There's plenty of moments of gore and a number of scenes that are quite thrilling , resulting to be definitely the spotlight of the film the surprising ending situation . Lousy special effects when the plane explodes , it's in made in ridiculous scale model that lookalike a little toy . Written by the usuals , Ernesto Gastaldi and Eduardo Manzanos Brochero ( also producer with his Production Company called Copercines , as he produced several Gialli and Western as ¨Apocalypse Joe , Danger Pass , Winchester one among thousand , Arrival Sartana , Djanjo the condemned ¨) . Good ambiance design and acceptable production design by Cubero and Galicia , both of whom created lots of sets in several Western filmed in the 60s and 70s . Sergio Martino's so-so direction is well crafted, here he's less cynical and more inclined toward violence and lots of killings . It's a co-production Italian- Spanish , for that reason appears Spanish actors as Luis Barboo , Alberto De Mendoza , Janine Reynaud and Italian players as Luigi Pistilli and Ida Galli , among others . Colorful and evocative cinematography by Emilio Foriscot who photographed splendidly Londres , Madrid , Rome and Greece where is developed the action . However , the photography is washed-out and for that reason is necessary an urgent remastering . Very good and suspenseful score by Bruno Nicolai , known disciple of Ennio Morricone and his director of orchestra .

The picture is professionally directed by the prolific filmmaker Sergio Martino . Talented and versatile writer/director Sergio Martino has made a vast array of often solid and entertaining films in all kind of genres as horror, Giallo , comedy, Western, and science fiction in a career that spans over 40 years . He especially was expert on Western as proved in ¨Mannaja¨ and ¨Arizona returns¨ and Giallo as this ¨The case of scorpion's tail ¨ , ¨Torso¨ ,¨the scorpion with two tails¨ and of course ¨The strange vice of Mrs Ward¨. Rating: Acceptable and passable , this is one more imaginative slasher pictures in which the camera stalks in sinister style throughout a story with magnificent visual skills. This is a bewildering story , funny in some moment but falls flat and it will appeal to hardcore Gialli fans

5 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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