Lucrèce, the best killer in the business, accepts a final job: eliminate an opera singer who threatens the interests of a corporation. She's hired as a soprano for a festival her target is singing in, but things don't happen as planned.
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Lucrèce is a contract killer in search of a new life. Specialized in the use of poisons and enamored with opera, she accepts a difficult, final hit in a castle in the heart of the Swiss Alps. Posing as a soprano, Lucrèce must perform on stage during the very prestigious Festival of Ermeux and slaughter one of her co-performers, British baritone Alexander Child, who recently bought a distillery in Scotland, and thus became the only obstacle to a strategic pipeline project with considerable financial ramifications. He just won a long legal battle against British Oil, who now has no other choice but to eliminate him. To complicate things, French counter-espionage learns of the hit and sends Rico, a reinstated former agent, to infiltrate the orchestra, unmask and terminate all who wish harm to Alexander Child. Rico has no information on the killer and has a lot of trouble identifying her amid a horde of suspicious characters: an obnoxious conductor, a particularly proud tenor and a ... Written by
The deadliest hit-man in Europe is actually a woman and sings contralto. The toughest secret agent detailed to stop her is a guitar virtuoso. If you can swallow that and watch the rest of it as a straight thriller, you have a mental age of four. Tops.
In fact, this is a hilarious send-up of three different genres all at once: Hitchcockian cat-and-mouse thriller, Agatha Christie whodunnit and Italian giallo. Perhaps the director (quite rightly) doubted that the producers would allow him to make three different films in this vein, so he lumped all three together. Which I suppose makes the whole even funnier.
The script goes out of its way to invent the most bizarre situations and then sabotage them in the most outlandish ways possible. Witness the outrageous murder method employed in the opening sequence, or the episode where the killer uses poison to fulfill her contract, only to realise she is a breath away from having a mass murder on her CV. All characters behave like children in a playground sand pit, set to gorgeous strands of Handel's Messiah. And the film looks ravishing, too, in the best 70s fashion, both outdoors and in.
Bound to be a flop at the box-office (way, way too tongue-in-cheek for the popcorn-munching crowd), but should become a cult classic if there's any justice in this world.
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