6.7/10
5,946
56 user 108 critic

4 mosche di velluto grigio (1971)

Trailer
1:00 | Trailer

On Disc

at Amazon

A musician is stalked by an unknown killer who's blackmailing him for an accidential killing of another stalker. But is everything what it appears to be?

Director:

Dario Argento

Writers:

Dario Argento (story), Luigi Cozzi (story) | 3 more credits »
Reviews

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Certificate: GP Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

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
Certificate: GP Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A writer is stalked by a serial killer after witnessing a murder attempt on a woman's life.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Tony Musante, Suzy Kendall, Enrico Maria Salerno
Trauma (1993)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

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
Opera (1987)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

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
Tenebre (1982)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An American writer in Rome is stalked by a serial killer bent on harassing him while killing all people associated with his work on his latest book.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Anthony Franciosa, Giuliano Gemma, Christian Borromeo
Sleepless (2001)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

An elderly and retired police detective and a young amateur sleuth team up to find a serial killer whom has resumed a killing spree in Turin, Italy after a 17-year hiatus.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Max von Sydow, Stefano Dionisi, Chiara Caselli
Phenomena (1985)
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A young girl, with an amazing ability to communicate with insects, is transferred to an exclusive Swiss boarding school, where her unusual capability might help solve a string of murders.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Jennifer Connelly, Donald Pleasence, Daria Nicolodi
Inferno (1980)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

An American college student in Rome and his sister in New York investigate a series of killings in both locations where their resident addresses are the domain of two covens of witches.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Leigh McCloskey, Irene Miracle, Eleonora Giorgi
Deep Red (1975)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A pianist is unwittingly pulled into a complex web of mystery after witnessing the brutal murder of a psychic.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: David Hemmings, Daria Nicolodi, Gabriele Lavia
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A young policewoman slowly goes insane while tracking down an elusive serial rapist/killer through Italy when she herself becomes a victim of the brutal man's obsession.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Asia Argento, Thomas Kretschmann, Marco Leonardi
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

In the chaos of the final days of the Italian revolution a thief and a baker hook up and travel the streets of Milan witnessing the historic events, which quickly take a dark turn.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Adriano Celentano, Enzo Cerusico, Marilù Tolo
Ti piace Hitchcock? (TV Movie 2005)
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

A college film student, obsessed with the works of Alfred Hitchcock, investigates a murder committed in the apartment building across from his and suspects that his seductive neighbor hired a girlfriend to commit the deed.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Elio Germano, Chiara Conti, Elisabetta Rocchetti
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Brandon ... Roberto Tobias
Mimsy Farmer ... Nina Tobias
Jean-Pierre Marielle ... Gianni Arrosio (as Jean Pierre Marielle)
Aldo Bufi Landi Aldo Bufi Landi ... Pathologist
Calisto Calisti Calisto Calisti ... Carlo Marosi
Marisa Fabbri ... Amelia, the Maid
Oreste Lionello ... The Professor
Fabrizio Moroni Fabrizio Moroni ... Mirko
Corrado Olmi Corrado Olmi ... Porter
Stefano Satta Flores Stefano Satta Flores ... Andrea
Laura Troschel Laura Troschel ... Maria (as Costanza Spada)
Francine Racette ... Dalia
Bud Spencer ... Diomede / Godfrey
Dante Cleri Dante Cleri ... Coffin Salesman
Guerrino Crivello Guerrino Crivello ... Rambaldi, the Neighbor
Edit

Storyline

Roberto, a drummer in a rock band, keeps receiving weird phone calls and being followed by a mysterious man. One night he manages to catch up with his persecutor and tries to get him to talk but in the ensuing struggle he accidentally stabs him. He runs away, but he understands his troubles have just begun when the following day he receives an envelope with photos of him killing the man. Someone is killing all his friends and trying to frame him for the murders... Written by Giancarlo Cairella <vertigo@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

If you dare to see it alone, make sure someone escorts you home. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Official site [Japan]

Country:

Italy | France

Language:

Italian

Release Date:

25 August 1972 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

4 Flies on Grey Velvet See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In the United States, the soundtrack by Ennio Morricone is available on CD. The movie itself was unavailable until early 2009. See more »

Crazy Credits

You have just seen Four Flies on Grey Velvet. See more »

Connections

Referenced in iMadman (2014) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Experimental early Argento
1 August 2006 | by Red-BarracudaSee all my reviews

Four Flies on Grey Velvet is Dario Argento's rarest genre film. It completes the Animal Trilogy and is the movie that preceded the magnificent Deep Red. Having never been officially available on video or DVD, Four Flies remains a bit of an enigma. It's fair to say that it is not an entirely successful movie – it has serious flaws in story and acting – however, it showcases early stylistic experimentation by Argento. And, as such, is an important entry of giallo cinema.

The story involves a rock drummer who accidentally kills a man and is drawn into a web of murder by a masked assassin who appears to have a vendetta against him.

The opening credit sequence is a memorable affair, incorporating pounding drums and close ups of a beating heart. This title sequence, however, is a good indicator of the inconsistencies of the film we are about to see, as included within this impressive opening is a silly section involving a fly that irritates rock drummer Brandon. The inclusion of this nonsense is an early example of one of the films major weaknesses – the comedy. It is never funny. We have a completely unfunny postman, a guru fisherman God who says absolutely nothing of interest at any point and a man with a moustache who tells a succession of abysmally unfunny stories to an audience of giggling women. Argento has never had flair for comedy, it's just not his arena and this film shows why. Imagine how bad a giallo directed by Woody Allen would be, well that's how bad comedy directed by Argento is.

But onwards and upwards. Thankfully he handles the suspense scenes very well indeed. We have the bizarre opening murder in the theatre witnessed by a highly creepy masked figure. A scary scene involving a girl hiding in a cupboard while the killer stalks outside. A sleazy episode in the underground. And, best of all, an excellent set-piece where a woman suddenly realises that she is alone in a menacing empty park that was previously filled with children and haunting carousel music playing over the tannoy. Four Flies is predominantly an exercise in suspense as all of these well handled sequences testify. The violence is restrained even for giallos of the period. Argento more than makes up for this with stylistic flourishes like the nice camera pan of the phone wires leading to the location of the killer, the shots of Michael Brandon driving his car quickly edited together with his subsequent POV approach to the private investigator's office and the deranged asylum flashback scenes. The movie is well shot with a number of inventive jump edits and unusual angles, giving a taste of Argento's films to come.

However, all of these excellent elements are strung together by a somewhat ridiculous plot. There are certainly holes here, for example, how could the newspapers report finding the body of the dead man if he's not actually dead?! And as for the 'four flies' revelation near the end, well I won't spoil it for anyone who hasn't seen the movie but it really is quite ridiculous. And the killer's motivations are, to say the least, uneven. The acting, too, is not helpful. Sadly, Michael Brandon resembles a plank of wood for the majority of his screen-time. His acting range stretches from 'a bit bored' to 'quite annoyed'. He certainly doesn't help draw the viewer in. And where Brandon under-acts, Mimsy Farmer over-acts. It makes for quite unusual viewing when they are on screen together. There is a lack of chemistry here for sure. In general, the exposition scenes are a bit clunky throughout the movie. And we even have a bit of unintentional humour in the exchanges between Brandon and the homosexual private investigator. If you turned the movie on at this point you could be forgiven for thinking you were watching Carry On Giallo.

The music is variable. This was the first movie where Argento incorporated rock music. From here on he would use it extensively. Similar to the rock music provided by future collaborators Goblin, the rock music here is strange, except here it is not strange in a good way. The vocalist sounds like a deaf man trying to copy Robert Plant. It's grim. And it's by Ennio Morricone so it's a bit of a shock but fortunately he also provides some good avant-garde jazzy compositions too. Much better.

Overall, despite its short-falls, Four Flies on Grey Velvet is too interesting a giallo movie to be disregarded. It is a key experimental work in Argento's cannon. It may be flimsy of plot and misguided of humour but, as is the way with giallo cinema, these elements have to be weighed against the more sensory aspects – the visuals, the music, the atmosphere. And happily, there is more than enough good to outweigh the bad.


26 of 33 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 56 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed