The Best Giallo movies

by KevsHardLemonade | created - 18 Apr 2016 | updated - 19 May 2017 | Public

Giallo movies are Italian-produced murder-mystery horror thrillers usually a sub-genre of the horror genre which feature scenes of excessive violence – often originally choreographed – which blur the lines between art and exploitation cinema.

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1. Deep Red (1975)

R | 127 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

89 Metascore

A jazz pianist and a wisecracking journalist are pulled into a complex web of mystery after the former witnesses the brutal murder of a psychic.

Director: Dario Argento | Stars: David Hemmings, Daria Nicolodi, Gabriele Lavia, Macha Méril

Votes: 33,136

2. Tenebrae (1982)

R | 101 min | Crime, Horror, Mystery

83 Metascore

An American writer in Rome is stalked and harassed by a serial killer who is murdering everyone associated with his work on his latest book.

Director: Dario Argento | Stars: Anthony Franciosa, Giuliano Gemma, John Saxon, Daria Nicolodi

Votes: 21,285

3. Blood and Black Lace (1964)

Not Rated | 88 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

A masked, shadowy killer brutally murders the models of a scandalous fashion house in Rome.

Director: Mario Bava | Stars: Cameron Mitchell, Eva Bartok, Thomas Reiner, Arianna Gorini

Votes: 9,595

4. The Bird with the Crystal Plumage (1970)

GP | 96 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

An American expatriate in Rome witnesses an attempted murder that is connected to an ongoing killing spree in the city, and conducts his own investigation despite himself and his girlfriend being targeted by the killer.

Director: Dario Argento | Stars: Tony Musante, Suzy Kendall, Enrico Maria Salerno, Eva Renzi

Votes: 18,899 | Gross: $0.42M

5. The Forbidden Photos of a Lady Above Suspicion (1970)

Not Rated | 96 min | Mystery, Thriller

The wife of a financially struggling businessman is blackmailed by a mysterious man into having a sadistic relationship with him, or he will release damning evidence which suggests that her husband is a murderer.

Director: Luciano Ercoli | Stars: Dagmar Lassander, Pier Paolo Capponi, Simón Andreu, Osvaldo Genazzani

Votes: 1,493

AKA Forbidden Photos Of a Lady Above Suspicion

6. A Bay of Blood (1971)

R | 84 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

The murder of a wealthy countess, which was erroneously deemed suicide, triggers a chain reaction of brutal killings in the surrounding bay area, as several unscrupulous characters try to take over her large estate.

Director: Mario Bava | Stars: Claudine Auger, Luigi Pistilli, Claudio Camaso, Anna Maria Rosati

Votes: 9,705

AKA Twitch of the Death Nerve

7. Don't Torture a Duckling (1972)

Not Rated | 105 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

A reporter and a promiscuous young woman try to solve a series of child killings in a remote southern Italian town rife with superstition and a distrust of outsiders.

Director: Lucio Fulci | Stars: Florinda Bolkan, Barbara Bouchet, Tomas Milian, Irene Papas

Votes: 8,509

8. A Lizard in a Woman's Skin (1971)

Not Rated | 95 min | Mystery, Thriller

The potentially unhinged daughter of a British politician is accused of killing her hedonistic neighbor after she witnesses the murder in a dream.

Director: Lucio Fulci | Stars: Florinda Bolkan, Jean Sorel, Stanley Baker, Silvia Monti

Votes: 4,594

9. Torso (1973)

R | 92 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

A string of appalling lust murders shocks the University of Perugia as a sadistic serial killer strangles to death beautiful college girls with a red and black scarf.

Director: Sergio Martino | Stars: Suzy Kendall, Tina Aumont, Luc Merenda, John Richardson

Votes: 5,923

10. Your Vice Is a Locked Room and Only I Have the Key (1972)

Not Rated | 97 min | Drama, Horror, Mystery

A series of murders are committed near the estate of a degenerate author and his wife.

Director: Sergio Martino | Stars: Edwige Fenech, Anita Strindberg, Luigi Pistilli, Ivan Rassimov

Votes: 3,435

11. Opera (1987)

R | 107 min | Crime, Horror, Mystery

A young opperata is stalked by a deranged fan bent on killing the people associated with her to claim her for himself.

Director: Dario Argento | Stars: Cristina Marsillach, Ian Charleson, Urbano Barberini, Daria Nicolodi

Votes: 15,683

12. The New York Ripper (1982)

Not Rated | 85 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

A burned-out New York police detective teams up with a college psychoanalyst to track down a vicious serial killer randomly stalking and killing various young women around the city.

Director: Lucio Fulci | Stars: Jack Hedley, Almanta Suska, Howard Ross, Andrea Occhipinti

Votes: 9,915

13. Black Belly of the Tarantula (1971)

Not Rated | 89 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

A series of victims are paralyzed while having their bellies ripped open, much in the same way tarantulas are killed by the black wasp. The victims all seem to have a connection with a spa.

Director: Paolo Cavara | Stars: Giancarlo Giannini, Claudine Auger, Barbara Bouchet, Rossella Falk

Votes: 2,903

14. Short Night of Glass Dolls (1971)

Not Rated | 97 min | Horror, Mystery

An American journalist temporarily stationed in Central Europe searches for his new girlfriend, who has suddenly disappeared.

Director: Aldo Lado | Stars: Ingrid Thulin, Jean Sorel, Mario Adorf, Barbara Bach

Votes: 2,868

15. The Cat o' Nine Tails (1971)

GP | 112 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

63 Metascore

A newspaper reporter and a retired, blind journalist try to solve a series of killings connected to a pharmaceutical company's experimental, top-secret research projects and in so doing, both become targets of the killer.

Director: Dario Argento | Stars: James Franciscus, Karl Malden, Catherine Spaak, Pier Paolo Capponi

Votes: 10,428

16. Four Flies on Grey Velvet (1971)

PG | 104 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

A musician is stalked by an unknown homicidal maniac, who blackmails him for the accidental killing of another stalker.

Director: Dario Argento | Stars: Michael Brandon, Mimsy Farmer, Jean-Pierre Marielle, Aldo Bufi Landi

Votes: 7,550

17. Seven Blood-Stained Orchids (1972)

Unrated | 92 min | Mystery, Thriller

A woman, a survivor of a failed murder attempt by a person dubbed "The Half-Moon Killer" by the police, and her husband must find the connecting thread between herself, six other women, and... See full summary »

Director: Umberto Lenzi | Stars: Antonio Sabato, Uschi Glas, Pier Paolo Capponi, Rossella Falk

Votes: 2,014

18. What Have You Done to Solange? (1972)

R | 107 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

A teacher who is having an affair with one of his students takes her out on a boat. They see a knife killing on shore. Other gruesome murders start occurring shortly thereafter, and the teacher suspects that he may be the cause of them.

Director: Massimo Dallamano | Stars: Fabio Testi, Karin Baal, Cristina Galbó, Joachim Fuchsberger

Votes: 4,741

19. The House with Laughing Windows (1976)

110 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

Stefano, a young restorer, is commissioned to save a controversial mural located in the church of a small, isolated village.

Director: Pupi Avati | Stars: Lino Capolicchio, Francesca Marciano, Gianni Cavina, Giulio Pizzirani

Votes: 4,869

20. Strip Nude for Your Killer (1975)

Not Rated | 98 min | Mystery, Thriller

When a fashion model dies during an abortion, a series of murders begins, starting with her doctor. The next victims are connected to the modeling agency where she worked, Albatross, run by... See full summary »

Director: Andrea Bianchi | Stars: Edwige Fenech, Nino Castelnuovo, Femi Benussi, Solvi Stubing

Votes: 2,275

21. Bloodstained Shadow (1978)

Not Rated | 109 min | Mystery, Thriller

The body of a schoolgirl is found in a meadow. The murderer is never caught, and years later; a young man named Stefano returns to the island and is reunited with his brother, the local priest.

Director: Antonio Bido | Stars: Lino Capolicchio, Stefania Casini, Craig Hill, Massimo Serato

Votes: 1,489

22. The Evil Eye (1963)

Not Rated | 86 min | Comedy, Horror, Mystery

A mystery novel-loving American tourist witnesses a murder in Rome, and soon finds herself and her suitor caught up in a series of killings.

Director: Mario Bava | Stars: John Saxon, Letícia Román, Valentina Cortese, Titti Tomaino

Votes: 4,130

AKA The Girl Who Knew Too Much

23. Hatchet for the Honeymoon (1970)

GP | 88 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

A cleaver-wielding bridal designer murders various young brides-to-be in an attempt to unlock a repressed childhood trauma.

Director: Mario Bava | Stars: Stephen Forsyth, Dagmar Lassander, Laura Betti, Jesús Puente

Votes: 3,433

24. All the Colors of the Dark (1972)

R | 87 min | Horror, Thriller

A woman recovering from a car accident in which she lost her unborn child finds herself pursued by a coven of devil worshipers.

Director: Sergio Martino | Stars: George Hilton, Edwige Fenech, Ivan Rassimov, Julián Ugarte

Votes: 3,525

25. The Case of the Bloody Iris (1972)

Not Rated | 94 min | Mystery, Thriller

Having recently escaped the clutches of a hippie sex cult, a beautiful model is pursued by a serial killer whose previous victims include former occupants of her new apartment.

Director: Giuliano Carnimeo | Stars: Edwige Fenech, George Hilton, Paola Quattrini, Giampiero Albertini

Votes: 2,476

26. The Case of the Scorpion's Tail (1971)

Not Rated | 95 min | Mystery, Thriller

When the estranged widow of a millionaire receives a massive payout following his death, an insurance investigator works to determine any irregularities in the policy, but soon finds himself suspected of her murder.

Director: Sergio Martino | Stars: George Hilton, Anita Strindberg, Alberto de Mendoza, Janine Reynaud

Votes: 2,702

27. A Blade in the Dark (1983)

Unrated | 108 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

A killer stalks a composer staying at a posh Tuscany villa while writing the score to a horror film which has an incriminating clue to the killer's identity.

Director: Lamberto Bava | Stars: Andrea Occhipinti, Anny Papa, Fabiola Toledo, Michele Soavi

Votes: 3,170

28. The Night Evelyn Came Out of the Grave (1971)

R | 103 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

A rich, mentally unstable man who's obsessed with his deceased wife invites women to the family castle for a game of deadly S&M. He suddenly decides to get married to the beautiful Gladys, but does she have his best interests at heart?

Director: Emilio Miraglia | Stars: Anthony Steffen, Marina Malfatti, Enzo Tarascio, Giacomo Rossi Stuart

Votes: 2,262

AKA The Night Evelyn Came Out of the Grave

29. The Fifth Cord (1971)

Not Rated | 93 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

A journalist finds himself on the trail of a murderer who's been targeting people around him, while the police are considering him a suspect in their investigation.

Director: Luigi Bazzoni | Stars: Franco Nero, Silvia Monti, Wolfgang Preiss, Ira von Fürstenberg

Votes: 1,818

30. Trauma (1993)

R | 106 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

A young man tries to help a teenage European girl who escaped from a clinic hospital after witnessing the murder of her parents by a serial killer and they try to find the killer before the killer finds them.

Director: Dario Argento | Stars: Christopher Rydell, Asia Argento, Piper Laurie, Frederic Forrest

Votes: 6,457

31. The Red Queen Kills Seven Times (1972)

PG | 99 min | Crime, Horror, Mystery

When two sisters inherit their family castle, a string of murders committed by a mysterious dark haired woman in a red cloak targets their circle of friends. Is the killer their ancestor, ... See full summary »

Director: Emilio Miraglia | Stars: Barbara Bouchet, Ugo Pagliai, Marina Malfatti, Marino Masé

Votes: 2,291

32. Death Walks at Midnight (1972)

Not Rated | 102 min | Comedy, Horror, Mystery

In the midst of a drug-fueled photo-shoot, a model witnesses a brutal murder in the apartment opposite hers. But when the authorities refuse to believe her, she is forced to assume the role of amateur sleuth to unravel the mystery.

Director: Luciano Ercoli | Stars: Nieves Navarro, Simón Andreu, Peter Martell, Carlo Gentili

Votes: 1,479

33. So Sweet, So Dead (1972)

X | 88 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

A serial killer is on the loose. His victims are unfaithful wives and he always leaves compromising photographs at the crime scene.

Director: Roberto Bianchi Montero | Stars: Farley Granger, Sylva Koscina, Silvano Tranquilli, Annabella Incontrera

Votes: 725

34. One on Top of the Other (1969)

R | 108 min | Mystery, Thriller

An unscrupulous doctor is accused of killing his asthmatic wife as part of an insurance scam, despite discovering that she has a doppelgänger who works as a high-class stripper.

Director: Lucio Fulci | Stars: Jean Sorel, Marisa Mell, Elsa Martinelli, Alberto de Mendoza

Votes: 1,963

AKA Perversion Story

35. The Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh (1971)

R | 81 min | Crime, Horror, Mystery

An ambassador's wife discovers that one of the men in her life - either her husband, an ex-lover or her current lover - may be a vicious serial killer.

Director: Sergio Martino | Stars: George Hilton, Edwige Fenech, Conchita Airoldi, Manuel Gil

Votes: 4,153

AKA The Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh

36. Macabro (1980)

Unrated | 89 min | Horror

A middle-aged woman, traumatized from the death of her adulterous lover, moves into a room at a New Orleans boarding house where the blind landlord becomes suspicious to her activities of continuing her affair with her dead lover.

Director: Lamberto Bava | Stars: Bernice Stegers, Stanko Molnar, Veronica Zinny, Roberto Posse

Votes: 2,519

37. Delirio caldo (1972)

R | 102 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

A respected doctor becomes the prime suspect in a series of gruesome murders.

Director: Renato Polselli | Stars: Mickey Hargitay, Rita Calderoni, Raul Lovecchio, Carmen Young

Votes: 937

AKA Delirium

38. The Perfume of the Lady in Black (1974)

R | 103 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

Sylvia, an industrial scientist, is troubled by strange hallucinations related to the tragic suicide of her mother.

Director: Francesco Barilli | Stars: Mimsy Farmer, Maurizio Bonuglia, Mario Scaccia, Jho Jhenkins

Votes: 2,329

39. Five Dolls for an August Moon (1970)

Not Rated | 82 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

An industrialist invites his colleagues and their wives to relax on his private island so they can exploit the monetary value of one of the guests' revolutionary resin formula, but a killer within the group disrupts the proceedings.

Director: Mario Bava | Stars: William Berger, Ira von Fürstenberg, Edwige Fenech, Howard Ross

Votes: 2,733

40. Eyeball (1975)

R | 91 min | Mystery, Thriller

A maniac killer in a red cape and hood is killing off American tourists on a tour bus by gouging out their eyeballs.

Director: Umberto Lenzi | Stars: Martine Brochard, John Richardson, Ines Pellegrini, Andrés Mejuto

Votes: 1,472

41. The Sister of Ursula (1978)

Not Rated | 96 min | Drama, Horror, Mystery

While searching for their estranged mother, two beautiful sisters, Dagmar and Ursula, arrive at a luxurious seaside hotel. At the same time, a mysterious killer starts murdering promiscuous women in the area.

Director: Enzo Milioni | Stars: Barbara Magnolfi, Stefania D'Amario, Anna Zinnemann, Vanni Materassi

Votes: 727

42. Spasmo (1974)

R | 94 min | Mystery, Thriller

Christian (Robert Hoffman) and his girlfriend are taking a walk on a deserted beach when they discover a woman's body lying. A closer look proves that she's alive. The next day Christian ... See full summary »

Director: Umberto Lenzi | Stars: Robert Hoffmann, Suzy Kendall, Ivan Rassimov, Adolfo Lastretti

Votes: 1,643



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