A Blade in the Dark
in the Dark, or La casa con la scala nel buio is labeled
horror, but is equally at home in the thriller genre. Directed by
Lamberto Bava, son of Mario Bava, it is clear that Lamberto learned
the art of extreme gore and interesting camera angles from his dad.
advances the art on his own, however, by adding real fright, both the
startle and suspense type. In an example scene, a woman is fleeing the
killer, who has already cut her. She hides behind a chain link gate,
and it looks like she might be safe. Suddenly, the knife plunges
through the gate, but can't reach her at first. We have the surprise
of the sudden knife thrust, followed by the suspense of whether or not
the killer can reach her.
| We have breast exposure by Fabiola Toledo as she
changes into a swim suit.
| It was written as a four part TV mini-series,
filmed on a tiny budget mostly inside a villa, and then was released
as a feature film.
DVD info from Amazon.
The DVD is a decent transfer, and there is a 10 minute
interview with the director.
|The plot is simple. A composer is hired to score a horror film, and
rents a villa for a month to work in. Women start disappearing, and
there are many possible suspects.
It kept me guessing all the way to
the end, not through plot trickery, but because we learn things as the
hero learns them.
guideline: 7.5 usually indicates a level of
excellence, about like three and a half stars
from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm
watchability, about like two and a half stars
from the critics. The fives are generally not
worthwhile unless they are really your kind of
material, about like two stars from the critics.
Films under five are generally awful even if you
like that kind of film, equivalent to about one
and a half stars from the critics or less,
depending on just how far below five the rating
guideline: A means the movie is so good it
will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not
good enough to win you over if you hate the
genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an
open mind about this type of film. C means it will only
appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover
appeal. D means you'll hate it even if you
like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if
you love the genre. F means that the film is not only
unappealing across-the-board, but technically
inept as well.
Based on this
description, this film is a strong C+.
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