Senza via d’uscita (1971)

Translated as No Way Out, this movie is also known as Devil’s RansomLa MachinationTerroriThe VictimsDiabolicalThe Devil and His Diabolical Mistress and Photos of a Decent Woman. 

While this was sold to me as a giallo, it feels closer to a krimini film, as the genre had not yet fully begun to ape — bird? cat? — Argento yet.

Gilbert Mardeau (Philippe Leroy) is a bank courier stuck in a loveless marriage with Michele (Marisa Mell, so obviously this is science fiction because Marisa Mell is literally the entire reason why I have suffered through some movies). He has a woman on the side (Lea Massari, who no offense, but is a major step down) and a problem: someone has kidnapped his son and wants big money or he’ll never see him alive again.

Piero Sciumé only directed one more and this is it. It’s definitely not a straight-up black gloved, knife wielding killer movie, but the end has some nice psychedelic visuals, Mell is actually really solid as the mother driven to do unspeakable things and setting it in Stockholm is an interesting change of pace.

Obviously, for giallo completists only, but if you read this far, look in the mirror and realize that yes, you are one.

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