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

R  |   |  Mystery, Thriller  |  20 March 1973 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 2,543 users  
Reviews: 32 user | 85 critic

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



(screenplay), (story), 5 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Carol Hammond
Inspector Corvin
Jean Sorel ...
Frank Hammond
Silvia Monti ...
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 ...
Luigi Antonio Guerra ...
Erzsi Paál ...
Mrs. Gordon (as Ersi Pond)
Gaetano Imbró ...
Edmond Brighton


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


WARNING! Not Recommended Viewing for Persons with Schizophrenic Tendencies! See more »


Mystery | Thriller


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




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Release Date:

20 March 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Lizard in a Woman's Skin  »

Box Office


ESP 24,160,712 (Spain)

Company Credits

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Technical Specs



Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


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 »


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


Referenced in Paura: Lucio Fulci Remembered - Volume 1 (2008) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Fulci's Best Movie
26 October 2004 | by (Denver, Colorado and Santiago, Chile) – See all my reviews

Although Lucio Fulci is most famous for the atmospheric and very gory series of zombie movies he made in the late 70's and early 80's, this early 70's giallo might very well be his best film. It has all the strengths of Fulci's best work--great cinematography, brilliant editing, and a powerful sense of atmosphere (although the decadent, garish portrait he creates here of "Swinging London" is quite distinct from oozing sense of dread he conjures up in the rural American settings of his zombie films). This movie, however, has two things his zombie films do not have: first, a script that is both genuinely suspenseful and that actually makes sense (rather than merely functioning as a means to tie various interesting scenes together), and, second, Florinda Balkan. It is hard to describe how good Balkan is here, but if you've seen her in "Flavia, the Heretic" or in the supporting role she plays in another excellent Fulci giallo "Don't Torture a Duckling" you'll know what I mean. There is some decent acting in many of the later Fulci movies, but nothing like Balkan's performance in this and in "Duckling".

And if you're the typical Fulci fan seeking a heavy dosage of blood and gore, you won't be disappointed. This movie offers a bat attack similar to the one he later did in "House by the Cemetery" which is less bloody, but much more realistic as it accomplished through clever editing rather than phony prosthetics. Then there is the scene with a half-dissected (but still living)dog which actually landed Fulci in court for animal cruelty! (Don't worry--it wasn't a real dog). Hopefully, when this movie comes out on (legitimate) DVD that scene will be restored to its full power, and this excellent movie will be appreciated for what it truly is--Fulci's best movie.

6 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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