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Racconti di donne (1988)

6.5
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Title: Racconti di donne (1988)

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Cast

Credited cast:
Pierre Grosso
Roberto Malone
Lola Montres
Charles Trip
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female nudity | See All (1) »

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Mystery | Thriller

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5 July 1988 (Italy)  »

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User Reviews

 
An impressively good late Giallo, with lavish settings and great suspense
26 October 2012 | by (Los Angeles, usa) – See all my reviews

One of those little cult's gems that were still offered to the international markets,in the late 1980's!This doesn't have anything less than some of the major Gialli's produced in the 1970's,if anything else,features more nudity,from some of the splendid ladies involved,very fine settings,costumes,and cinematography,all together brings back that great lost sense of professionalism of a certain type of lost Euro Cinema,showing us why it's still so recognized today.The story is centered around a deeply troubled lady,going through a deep existential crisis,despite a successful career in High Fashion,a busy Atelier,in the center of Rome,she's hiding an obscure past. Her husband,just apparently drowned by accident,after being painfully recognized and declared dead by her&her mysterious son(Domiziano Arcangeli,a gorgeous young boy,then)has left them with some absurd amount of money,she doesn't want,being a cause of wrong judgment,from many, now telling about her cheating habits vs. an husband she'd never loved,while having raised,a dangerous son.The boy,staying away from school,just seems,at first,to be hardly speaking to anyone,beside,a group of petty criminals,who're providing him with hard drugs,he brings to some very wealthy women,as an ex change for sex.Later, he'll be hanging,among others,with Cyd,tragic beauty,and,one of his mother's most sensational models.Cyd's contempt of a certain society,her abuse of drugs,her public meltdown's with rich lovers,have made of her a misfit,who seems now relying on Mickey,for an irrational relationship:he's easily 10years younger,and,has been found unconscious at Cyd's house,after nights of debaucheries,one time too many,apparently,after abusing other young women with the help of those gangsters&drug dealers he's been friends with.The wealthy, successful designer,amazingly attractive,Barbara Spencer,instead,of collecting lovers,as her bigot fake friends suggest,has been progressively self medicating herself with stronger doses of sleeping pills,also,to avoid a recurring nightmare(the film,elegantly starts with one of them):her husband,appearing,alive yet ghostly,in the middle of night is tormenting her,while,entertaining some of her young models,making fun of her,at first,with lurid acts,then even heard declaring to have came back to the living to vindicate his pride,wanting to drive his wife crazy first,and,to a painful death,later.While,her annoying psychiatrist seems more interested to take her to dinner,than to sanity,her son's increasingly arrogant behavior and incessant double innuendo's,trouble Barbara even more:one night she listens to the boy accusing her of murdering his father:his-in flash back's- reconstruction,of the possible event,shows Barbara,the Summer before,with a young handsome lover,being threatened by a divorce and a huge scandal,to ruin her own Career,after her husband's caught the two,in very compromising positions.But,suddenly the nobleman is being laughed at,by the lovers,called impotent,first, then,from a terrifying "invisible"3rd party's point of view(supposedly Mickey's)is being drowned slowly and without pity,by an unrecognizable evil Barbara&lover,who seem even to have a certain sadomasochistic pleasure by killing him with such a cruel act,even under Mickey's paralyzed eyes,maybe,too drugged up to even attempt to save his father! But,all this is implied by the boy,while, Barbara,even to her worst enemies,simply cannot look capable of any evil.What's behind Mickey's absurd stories,then,and frequent amorality?Why a boy of that age,would then choose such bad companies,over a mother always ready to please him or trying to opt for a reconciliation of sort?Who's trying to hide what,who's not? The situation degenerates when the turbulent Cyd is found dead,after having been raped and brutally stabbed,next to a semi unconscious,over dosed,Mickey.But,he's alive,and,quickly sent home from the Hospital,while the police starts some heavy investigations.One of the detectives seems to be the only one to believe in Barbara's innocence,and,will help her later,after discovering more of this puzzle.Barbara is still unaware of this,when,in the middle of the day,is brought far in some weird area,while following a man,resembling her ex dead husband,almost afraid of being driven mad,she keeps on staring at a guy who's more and more truly nobody else,than,the defunct nobleman,alive and well,now,very quickly appearing and disappearing,until entering an ancient mansion,where some criminals seem to be in for a huge drug deal.There are mirrors everywhere(this scene is extremely well shot!)we see her husband,we see Mickey,with another one of her models,semi nude,while kissing the boy,then,again the heavies,among them,a young man:he's her lover,we had seen in Mickey's retelling of his dad's assassination:again a quick cut of an almost unrecognizably violent,merciless Barbara,drowning the poor Count.All is puzzled,intriguingly twisted,effectively cut,from Barbara's point of view,obsessively going back&forth,while also trying to remain unseen,from a mirror to another.Until..Barbara wakes up deliriously,looking at the police around her,unfortunately checking on the only person who's now at the same unusual house of mirrors: brutally cut to pieces,Barbara recognizes Diana's corpse,that young model,seen earlier:at her Atelier,then,at one of Barbara's mansions,while playing with Mickey in the swimming pool,until her last time, a little ago,at the drug's deal!But,the detective who's been after her case,with care,informs her2 days,have instead gone by,since she'd been there,after following her "revived husband",a story making everyone to believe on her increasing madness.While,she is tragically reaching almost despair,now, back home,under the 'attentions'of some anonymous nurses,and,of an always more enigmatic Mickey,tragedy seems to keep unfolding,when she tries to reach onto her"friend",whom,we find out now,to truly be her ex-lover,the one we saw in Mickey's flashback,the same one,later seen,also at the house,where Diana was killed.I will have to stop here to avoid to give away too much! Can only say nothing is what it seems,here:if you find a few stretches of credibility,remind,you're not in,for counting those:if you are a Giallo,classic genre cinema's fan,as i am,this is a must see.A DVD has not been made available in the US,yet,hope someone does one soon(this is very popular in Italy,Germany,N.Europe,the best version is actually so far the one from Japan)since,this movie is beautifully shot,very erotic,yet never vulgar,but,always truly exciting,twisted in a way,like they only used to make them! The acting always extremely tense and convincing!Rarely,a Giallo's been so engaging,so driven to arouse a real cold fear,distress and powerful twist's,like this one!Loved every minute of it:a great,unique add to my collection!


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