An ex-convict, troubled by dreams that he strangles women, is hired as the caretaker on an estate owned by three very strange sisters. Soon after his arrival, a serial killer begins ...
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Maria Pia Conte,
An ex-convict, troubled by dreams that he strangles women, is hired as the caretaker on an estate owned by three very strange sisters. Soon after his arrival, a serial killer begins slaughtering blonde, blue-eyed women - and leaving their eyeballs in a bowl of water. Written by
More than anything, 1973's "The Blue Eyes of the Broken Doll" seems to pose the question "Can a film be called a giallo if it was not made in Italy?" Well, since this Spanish picture has every attribute of a classic giallo except the Italian soundtrack, let's just say the answer is yes, call it an "amarillo" and move on! This film was my first introduction to the huge oeuvre of the late Spanish horror icon Paul Naschy, an actor/writer/director/producer who in this film contented himself with merely being the lead man. Here he plays Gilles, a likable ex-con in northern France who signs on as handyman at the run-down estate of three very unusual and beautiful sisters: Claude, who is aloof and sports a burnt arm and prosthetic hand; Nicole, a redheaded nymphomaniac; and Ivette, an embittered, wheelchair-bound invalid. When a crazed psycho killer starts slaying women in the area and plucking out their baby blues, Gilles is automatically deemed suspect No. 1. But is he really the guilty party? Anyway, this amarillo, directed by Carlos Aured, provides giallo fans with all the requisite elements they have come to expect. It features any number of grisly and murderous set pieces (although the actual butchering of a pig may be the hardest thing to look at), stylish direction from Aured, some pleasing flashes of nudity courtesy of Eva Leon as the lusty Nicole, and an alternately sprightly and sinuous jazz score from Juan Carlos Calderon that should stick in your head for days. Typical for a giallo, red herrings abound, but the story ultimately manages to cohere very well and make perfect sense, unlike a lot of other gialli that I have seen. You may even be able to figure out the murderer in this one; as usual, the ending came as a complete surprise for me. And I must say that that ending is as pleasingly sick as any viewer could want. "Have a horrible time...and have fun," Naschy urges us during this film's introduction, and a fun time will certainly be had by all genre fans with this one. Oh...the DVD in question here, from the fine folks at Deimos, looks fantastic, is excellently subtitled and comes with some nice extras, too. Gracias, guys!
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