A corpse is found in the trunk of a car that belongs to the Swiss ambassador to the UK. Speculations run wild, as more people around the ambassador keep falling victim to the vicious killer. A former detective is hired to investigate.
In Dublin, a young woman is brutally murdered in her home by a maniac that throws acid in her face and then slits her throat with a razor. Her mangled body is later discovered in the boot of a limousine owned by the Swiss Ambassador Sobiesky. The Ambassador, who was the dead woman's lover, refuses to cooperate with the police due to his diplomatic immunity. John Norton, an ex-cop famed for his brutal working methods, is brought in to help and gets too deeply involved when he stars an affair with the Ambassador's beautiful step-daughter, Helen. Meanwhile, the brutal killings continue...Written by
"L'Iguana dalla lingua di fuoco" aka. "The Inguana with the Tongue of Fire" is certainly not a very memorable or spectacular Giallo, but it is still a pretty entertaining film that I recommend to my fellow Italian Horror buffs. The film, which is brought to you by director Riccardo Freda ("Lo Spettro", "Murder Inferno",...) has its flaws, but it also has quite a bunch of highly memorable elements. The film takes place in Ireland and, as far as I know of, this is the only Giallo ever set in Eire. The plot may not be the most original, and the twists sometimes seem a bit silly for Giallo standards, yet this is very cool in some aspects. The film has an eerie general mood and is often quite nasty, with gory murders, and the great Italian actor Luigi Pistilli in the lead as an investigating ex-cop. Pistilli truly was one of the greats in Italian cult-cinema, whose great performances complimented masterpieces of a variety of genres, such as brilliant Westerns ("For A Few Dollars More", "The Good The Bad And The Ugly", "The Great Silence"), ingenious Crime-Cinema ("Milano Calibro 9"), sublime Gialli ("Your Vice Is A Locked Room And Only I Have The Key", "The Scorpion's Tail") or Mario Bava's blood-soaked slasher landmark "A Bay Of Blood", just to mention some of the most memorable films the man has been in. And Pistilli once again delivers a great performance as the former Detective John Norton, a Dublin ex-copper who lives with his teenage daughter and his almost deaf mother. After a murder near the Swiss embassy, other violent murders follow. Since the police don't find any clues, the ex-detective Norton is appointed to the case... As mentioned above, the murder sequences are quite gory and nasty (if sometimes a bit clumsy). The score is also excellent, which contributes a lot to the atmosphere. The film also has some silly elements, such as a shrill tune whenever something eerie happens, but never to an extent that would lessen the entertainment-value. Pistilli is great, and the rest of the performances are not bad either, Anton Diffring is wonderfully arrogant as the Swiss ambassador, Irish actor Arthur O'Sullivan is very good as a grumpy elderly Police inspector, and beautiful Dagmar Lassander makes a sexy female lead. All things considered, this film is certainly no Giallo-highlight, but it is an overall entertaining flick that is well worth watching for Italian Horror buffs.
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