6.4/10
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49 user 71 critic

A Hatchet for the Honeymoon (1970)

Il rosso segno della follia (original title)
A cleaver-wielding bridal designer murders various young brides-to-be in an attempt to unlock a repressed childhood trauma concerning the death of his mother.

Director:

Mario Bava

Writer:

Santiago Moncada (screenplay)
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Stephen Forsyth ... John Harrington
Dagmar Lassander ... Helen Wood
Laura Betti ... Mildred Harrington
Jesús Puente ... Inspector Russell (as Jesus Puente)
Femi Benussi ... Alice Norton
Antonia Mas Antonia Mas ... Louise
Luciano Pigozzi ... Vences (as Alan Collin)
Gérard Tichy ... Dr. Kalleway (as Gerard Tichy)
Verónica Llimerá Verónica Llimerá ... Betsy (as Veronica Llimera)
Pasquale Fortunato ... John Harrington as a Boy (as Fortunato Pascuale)
Ignasi Abadal Ignasi Abadal ... Jimmy Kane (as José Ignacio Abadaz)
Silvia Lienas Silvia Lienas ... Vicky
Montserrat Riba Vidal Montserrat Riba Vidal ... Rosy Miller (as Monserrat Riba)
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Storyline

The owner of a design house busies himself murdering the new brides who have modelled his bridal fashions. When he decides to murder his wife, she becomes the ghost that wouldn't leave. Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

When you chop Aim well! Don't slip! And just make sure She doesn't drip! See more »


Certificate:

GP | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Spain | Italy

Language:

Italian | English

Release Date:

9 February 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Hatchet for the Honeymoon See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The TV show that Harrington refers to in an attempt to fool Inspector Russell is a clip from Mario Bava's own Black Sabbath (1963) - specifically the "Wurdalak" sequence featuring Boris Karloff. See more »

Goofs

When a newspaper close-up is shown, with a report of a murder on a train on the front page, the French word for wife (Epouse) is misspelled. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Mildred Harrington: John? John!
John Harrington: [shaving] Just a minute, Mildred.
John Harrington: [voice-over] My name is John Harrington. I'm 30 years old. I am a paranoiac. Hmph... "paranoiac". An enchanting word. So civilized, and full of possibilities. The truth is, I am completely mad... the realization which annoyed me at first, but is now amusing to me. Quite amusing. Nobody suspects I am a madman... a dangerous murderer. Not Mildred, my wife... nor the employees of my fashion center... nor, of course, my customers.
[...]
See more »

Connections

Featured in Villa Parisi: Legacy of Terror (2016) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A fiendish and colorful psycho drama from the great Mario Bava.
27 September 2009 | by Nightman85See all my reviews

Handsome bridal shop owner is troubled by mysteries from his childhood which seem to drive him to murder brides-to-be. However he may have other problems after the ghost of his vindictive wife starts to haunt him.

Hatchet for the Honeymoon is one deliciously strange and darkly comical chiller from the great Mario Bava. As usual Bava's direction is excellent and inventive; particularly the dynamic camera-work and vivid imagery. The story is quite compelling as it goes against the norm and takes the killer's point of view and makes us surprisingly sympathetic toward him. The plot also takes some nicely off-beat twists as it brims with moments of macabre humor, sharp suspense, and some touches of dream-like surrealism. In addition the music score of Sante Maria Romitelli is jazzy and quite beautiful at times; a nice contribution to the colorful cinematography.

The cast is fairly solid too. Star Stephen Forsyth does a wonderfully brooding performance and makes his psychotic character strangely likable (one wonders if Bret Easton Ellis saw this film before writing American Psycho). Forsyth is perfectly matched by co-star Laura Betti, who does a fiendish performance as Forsyth's domineering wife.

Hatchet for the Honeymoon is a real treat for fans of Bava and the giallo genre, or those that just enjoy odd-ball horror films. It's one of Bava's most interesting works and remains perhaps the most overlooked of his films.

*** 1/2 out of ****


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