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A Lizard in a Woman's Skin (1971)
"Una lucertola con la pelle di donna" (original title)

R  |   |  Mystery, Thriller  |  20 March 1973 (USA)
7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 2,366 users  
Reviews: 31 user | 80 critic

A young woman is accused of murdering her debauched neighbor after dreaming it. Was she set up, or did she really do it?

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(screenplay), (story), 5 more credits »
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Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Carol Hammond
...
Inspector Corvin
Jean Sorel ...
Frank Hammond
Silvia Monti ...
Deborah
Alberto de Mendoza ...
Sgt. Brandon
Penny Brown ...
Jenny (hippie girl)
Mike Kennedy ...
Hubert (hippie guy)
Ely Galleani ...
Joan Hammond (as Edy Gall)
George Rigaud ...
Dr. Kerr
Ezio Marano ...
Lowell (scientific squad)
Franco Balducci ...
McKenna
Luigi Antonio Guerra ...
Policeman
Erzsi Paál ...
Mrs. Gordon (as Ersi Pond)
Gaetano Imbró ...
Policeman
...
Edmond Brighton
Edit

Storyline

Florinda Bolkan plays the daughter of a prominant English politician who keeps having recurring "nightmares" in which she makes love to a bisexual nympho who lives downstairs and conducts all-night LSD orgies. When the nocturnal wet dreams become murderous, the neighbor turns up dead, and Florinda is the main suspect. Did she actually commit the murder she dreamt about? Is she being framed by her philandering husband? Did Florinda actually make nightly visits downstairs aside from borrowing the occasional cup of sugar? How DID Florinda's letter opener end up stuck in the dead neighbor's chest anyway? The complex plot unfolds amidst red herrings, outlandish dream sequences, lesbian hanky panky, and ominous close-ups of Florinda Bolkan's guilt-ridden facial expressions every time someone mentions the murder. All this takes place in swinging late-1960's London. Written by Mike Justice <Fergus21@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Biting, Gnawing Terror Claws at Your Brain! See more »

Genres:

Mystery | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

| |

Language:

Release Date:

20 March 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Lizard in a Woman's Skin  »

Box Office

Gross:

ESP 24,160,712 (Spain)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(DVD)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The scene in which Carol encounters the disemboweled dogs in the clinic became quite controversial because of the startlingly realistic (and graphic) appearance of the fake prop dogs. Director Lucio Fulci was nearly sent to prison because it was believed that the dogs were real and Fulci had allowed animal cruelty on the film. However crew members were able to testify in court that the "dogs" were indeed fake and no animals had ever been harmed. Special effects artist Carlo Rambaldi even presented the dog props in court to convince the jury. This was the first time that an effects artist had to testify in court that their work was fake. See more »

Goofs

When people are taking pictures of Julia Durer's body, her eyebrow moves. See more »

Connections

Referenced in No Telling (1991) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Fever-Dream-Like Fulci Giallo
27 May 2009 | by (Salzburg, Austria) – See all my reviews

The 'godfather of gore' Lucio Fulci is certainly most famous for his gory Zombie flicks, such as "Zombi 2" (1979), "City of the Living Dead" (1980), or "The Beyond" (1980). Great films, of course, but, as far as I am concerned, his less widely known 70s Gialli are at least as memorable. Especially his 1972 masterpiece "Non Si Sevizia Un Paperino" aka. "Don't Torture a Duckling", easily Fulci's greatest film, ranges among the greatest Italian Horror films ever made, and outshines all his Zombie flicks in a heartbeat. This earlier Giallo-outing by Fulci, "Una Lucertola Con La Pelle Di Donna" aka. "Lizard In A Woman's Skin" (1971) is doubtlessly also a very intense, beautiful and creepy Giallo that impresses with a wonderfully uncanny, fever-dream-like atmosphere and a wonderful Florinda Bolkan in the lead. Yet I do not fully share the enthusiasm of some of my fellow Giallo-lovers, many of whom even seem to regard this as Fulci's best. While "Lizard in a Woman's Skin" is doubtlessly highly atmospheric and furthermore has an ingeniously convoluted plot, it does have its lengths, and, even in regards of atmosphere, it cannot possibly compete with "Don't Torture a Duckling", in my opinion.

Tormented by bizarre lesbian dreams about her seductive neighbor (Anita Strindberg), the respectable lawyer's wife Carol Hammond (Florinda Bolkan) regularly visits a psychotherapist. One day, Carol tells the psychotherapist about a dream in which she murders the neighbor. Shortly thereafter, the neighbor is actually murdered, in the exact same manner that Carol has dreamt of... "Lizard in a Woman's Skin" is a Giallo that delivers in almost all regards. It has a convoluted plot and certainly isn't easy to predict. The cinematography is great, and the generally creepy, dream-like atmosphere is intensified by another ingenious score composed by maestro Ennio Morricone (the orchestra is conducted by another maestro, Bruno Nicolai). The film has a great ensemble-cast, especially Florinda Bolkan is brilliant in the lead. Bolkan is very beautiful and a great actress, and her performance here is just great. Anita Strindberg is mysterious and seductive in her role. The rest of the cast includes prolific characters such as Jean Sorel (as Carol's husband), Leo Genn (as her father), and Alberto De Mendoza (as one of the investigating police inspectors). Even though there are only few killings for Giallo-standards, the film has some very gory scenes and genuine shock-sequences. The film is very suspenseful, but, as mentioned above, it is partly a bit confused and has its lengths in-between. All in all, this is a very good film, but I personally wouldn't call it Fulci's best. That title doubtlessly goes to the masterpiece "Don't Torture A Duckling", but the two films can hardly be compared due to the very different theme, style and setting. If there is one film I would compare "Lizard in a Woman's Skin" with, it is probably Sergio Martino's underrated "Tutti I Colori Del Buio" (aka. "All Colors of the Dark", 1972), due to the psychedelic atmosphere and the confused female protagonist (though I personally preferred Martino's film). "Lizard in a Woman's Skin" provides a wonderful 70s feeling, with hippie-characters, orgies etc. Overall, "Lizard in a Woman's Skin" is highly recommended to all Giallo-lovers, particularly those who appreciate a psychedelic atmosphere. My rating: 7.5/10


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