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The Pyjama Girl Case (1978)

La ragazza dal pigiama giallo (original title)
Not Rated | | Mystery, Thriller | 12 January 1978 (Italy)
Two seemingly separate stories in New South Wales: a burned, murdered body of a young woman is found on the beach, and a retired inspector makes inquiries; also, Linda, a waitress and ferry... See full summary »

Director:

Flavio Mogherini
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ray Milland ... Inspector Thompson
Dalila Di Lazzaro ... Glenda Blythe
Michele Placido ... Antonio Attolini
Mel Ferrer ... Professor Henry Douglas
Howard Ross Howard Ross ... Roy Conner
Ramiro Oliveros ... Inspector Ramsey
Rod Mullinar Rod Mullinar ... Inspector Morris
Giacomo Assandri Giacomo Assandri ... Quint
Eugene Walter Eugene Walter ... Dorsey
Fernando Fernán Gómez ... Forensics detective
Antonio Ferrandis ... Nottingham (as Antonio Ferrandiz)
Vanessa Vitale Vanessa Vitale ... Quint's Neighbor
Mónica Rey Mónica Rey ... Patricia Clark Dorsey
Andrea Gnecco Andrea Gnecco
Sandra Dobrigna Sandra Dobrigna ... Little girl
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Storyline

Two seemingly separate stories in New South Wales: a burned, murdered body of a young woman is found on the beach, and a retired inspector makes inquiries; also, Linda, a waitress and ferry attendant, has several lovers and marries one, but continues seeing the others. The police have a suspect in the murder, but the retired inspector is convinced they're wrong; he continues a methodical investigation. Linda and her husband separate, and there are complications. Will the stories cross or are they already twisted together? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Mystery | Thriller

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Italy | Spain

Language:

Italian

Release Date:

12 January 1978 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

The Pyjama Girl Case See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film was inspired by a sensational real-life murder case that happened in Australia in 1934. See more »

Quotes

Inspector Thompson: Could you tell me if this insurance policy is still valid?
Dorsey: It's all up to date. It's the Security Central Company. Central Security Company, I mean. I'd bet my balls on it.
Inspector Thompson: [glances down] You wouldn't be risking much.
See more »


Soundtracks

Your Yellow Pyjama
Written by Amanda Lear and Riz Ortolani
Sung by Amanda Lear
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User Reviews

 
fascinating Italian 70's mystery, shot in Australia, starring Ray Milland
1 April 2006 | by django-1See all my reviews

Those expecting a sleazy, gory late entry in the "giallo" cycle of Italian cinema might be let down at THE PYJAMA GIRL CASE, but the film is actually a superb murder mystery, a fascinating character study, a police procedural, and a visually striking experience. Perhaps it's best to say that it was "inspired by a true story," since much liberty is taken with the original Australian case on which the film is based (and the Blue Underground DVD has as an extra an interview with investigative Australian author Richard Evans, who wrote a book about the real case from the 1930's). Ray Milland stars as a retired detective who spends time most of his time in his greenhouse (is this an allusion to the Columbo episode where Milland was into gardening?) but is brought out of retirement by a baffling case where an unknown corpse is found charred and decayed in an abandoned car on a beach. The police must first find who the woman is before finding who killed her. All the while as this story is being told we are following a second plot which I won't divulge here. At about the mid-point it seems as though the film might be nearly over, but it takes another turn and the chronologies of the stories become clear. As a regular watcher and reader of murder mysteries, the red herring characters were clear to me, the identity of the victim was no surprise, and the solution to the crime was not as much of a surprise as other IMDb reviews seem to think. However, I was riveted the way I am in a good Columbo episode thinking about the HOW and the WHY of the crime, and the clever way in which the various threads are tied together. Milland is, as always, superb, bringing many interesting quirks to the character of Thompson the retired detective. Michele Placido is impressive as the Italian immigrant waiter who is a major player in the parallel story, and Mel Ferrer is his usual suave self as a Professor who is having an affair with Placido's wife, who is played by the lovely Dalila Di Lazzaro. Fortunately, Milland and Ferrer provide their own voices. Howard Ross is also memorable as a vain and brutal German who is also having an affair with Dalila. While Riz Ortalani's music is largely the thumping electric euro-funk one expects in a 1977 film, it's much more subtle than, say, a soundtrack by Goblin, and two songs by Amanda Lear (my wife asked me "is that Nico?") are haunting and perfect, although many will find themselves initially put off by her singing. I don't think I can get the main song of hers out of my head. I had always considered buying a pan-and-scan VHS of this, but I'm glad I waited for the new and beautiful widescreen DVD. The Australian locations for the film as surprising and shot in an unexpected way that is fresh and makes the background an important character. I've been waiting to see this for two decades, and while it wasn't exactly what I was expecting, I was completely satisfied by it and watched it twice the day I bought it. Mystery fans and those into 70's Italian genre films should not miss it. However, don't expect the level of sex and violence you're usually provided in such films.


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