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Simona Sana is a young pathologist whom works in a morgue in Rome, Italy which suddenly gets hit with a wave of violent suicides that are attributed to a summer heat wave. Driven to exhaustion from the intense heat and the long hours worked, Simona struggles to complete her college theses about natural deaths when one "suicide" victim is brought into the morgue in which a young Catholic priest named Paul Lenox who identifies the corpse as being his sister, but that she did not commit suicide, and was instead murdered then subsequently set up to make it look like another suicide. Simona teams up with Father Lenox to solve the mystery and stay one step ahead of a mysterious killer who now begins to stalk her when she gets a little too close to the truth of the suicides. Written by
Bizarre, unusual Giallo. A real treat for the developed Italian horror admirers
Armando Crispino's `Autopsy' is an authentic Giallo but slightly more complex and diverse than your ordinary experiences in this field of horror. The constant mix of mystery, suicides and twisted characters makes this film one of the most ambitious Italian flicks of the early 70's. Closely living up to Dario Argento's films when it comes to originality and suspense, but a lot more modest when it comes to violent images. Autopsy contains a downright brilliant opening and the first 5 minutes (showing a series of repulsive suicides in the city of Rome) already were enough for me to consider this film a success. The story loses much of its initial grip, of course, but there still is a lot of imaginativeness to discover throughout the whole film. Compared to many other Gialli, Autopsy features a believable, solid plot and it sticks to it without the overuse of unnecessary plot-twists. The score (by Ennio Morricone) gives you cold shivers and the main characters are creatively presented. How about a depressed pathologist who has visions about the living dead copulating? Or a racecar-driver turned priest and out for vengeance? Autopsy is a lot more suspenseful than it is gory, even though the DVD-cover leads you to believe otherwise. Tension-highlights include a compelling sequence inside the `Death Museum' and an atmospheric experiment upon an entirely paralyzed victim. Add a bit of stylish nudity to all this and you've got yourself an undiscovered and ignored cult-gem. It may not satisfy horror-rookies on a quest to see tons of blood, but it'll sure please the more experienced horror fans. If you're searching for a top-macabre and unsettling horror film, this is the one.
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