Cinematic Void January Giallo 2023: So Sweet…So Perverse (1969)

EDITOR’S NOTE: Cinematic Void will be playing this movie on Tuesday, January 17 at the Music Box Theatre in Chicago, IL (tickets here). For more information, visit Cinematic Void. It’s also available in The Complete Lenzi/Baker Giallo Collection set from Severin, which has plenty of other great films like OrgasmoA Quiet Place to Kill and Knife of Ice.

Umberto Lenzi’s early giallo — before the Argento-influenced Seven Blood Stained Orchids — feel more like film noir than the standard films of the genre. Speaking of that same movie, it would also use the J. Vincent Edward song “Why.” And while we’re discussing influences, this movie is definitely feeling all sorts of Les Diaboliques.

Jean (Jean-Louis Trintignant, Amour) is a rich socialite who has come to the aid of Nicole (Carroll Baker!), a gorgeous woman mixed up with Klaus (Horst Frank, The Dead Are Alive). Sure, Jean is married, but that doesn’t stop him from falling for her, even when he learns that she’s been paid to kill him. Of course, his wife Danielle (Erika Blanc!) is mixed up in this, but Nicole is smarter than she seems. Beryl Cunningham (The Salamanders) is also in this as a dancer and Helga Line (Nightmare Castle) is on hand as well.

This was produced by Sergio Martino and has a screenplay by Ernesto Gastaldi, the writer of The Whip and the BodyThe PossessedThe Sweet Body of Deborah and All the Colors of the Dark. And check out that Riz Ortolani score!

This is a classic giallo with so many of the finest actresses of the form and perhaps its best writer scripting.

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