Archive for George Hilton

The Killer Must Kill Again (1975) Review

Posted in Killer Must Kill Again with tags , , , , on March 14, 2013 by Last Road Reviews

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KILLER MUST KILL AGAIN

*** Out of 5

Release Date- 1975

Running Time- 86-Minutes

Rating- NR

Screenplay- Adriano Bolzoni, Luigi Cozzi, Daniele Del Giudice

Director- Luigi Cozzi

Starring- George Hilton, Antoine Saint-John, Cristina Galbo, Eduardo Fajardo, Alessio Orano

Released in 1975 The Killer Must Kill Again (one of its many titles) is a forgotten film that had a 2nd lease on life when it was released on DVD by Mondo Marcarbo, which was the first official DVD release in the US. In general the film isn’t very well known and despite a few problems I do think the movie deserves a little more of an audience. When I first saw the movie I loved it, but it hasn’t held up as well for me and the flaws impacted my enjoyment whereas at first I was able to overlook them.

Giorgio Mainardi (Hilton) is going through a few problems with his wife Norma (Velazquez) and when he leaves the house he ends up coming across a killer (Antoine) dumping a body and Giorgio ends up blackmailing the killer as well as offering him 20-grand to kill his wife and make it look like an abduction. The killer does so and puts the body in the trunk of his car, but when he goes inside to clean up when he leaves he finds his car has been stolen by a young couple. The killer than steals a car and takes off in pursuit of the couple who are totally unaware there is a body in the trunk of the car and unaware a killer is on pursuit.

The biggest problem with The Killer Must Kill Again is the screenplay written by Adriano Bolzoni, Luigi Cozzi, Daniele Del Giudice; the plot is solid, but the execution however is a bit off. The characters are rather faceless with very little depth. Giorgio is the only character with any personality, but he’s also a bit cliched even for 1975. The young couple Luca (Orano) and Laura (Galbo) really don’t have anything of real interest to say and Luca is kind of an unlikeable jerk, but Laura fairs a bit better as the naive character and I’m not sure if it was the character I liked or the actress Cristina Galbo is one of my favorite actresses.

When the script focuses more on suspense things work well since the sub-par writing doesn’t really matter, but when the focus is the characters that’s when things get a bit sloppy as none of the characters are strong enough to carry the movie and the investigation by the police isn’t very interesting and the way Giorgio was busted is quite idiotic. Overall I wouldn’t say the script was poorly written, but it just wasn’t very good. I guess the weak characters is what does this one in, but again solid concept, poor execution.

As director Luigi Cozzi fairs a bit better; for the most part the film is well-made with some solid suspense, but when the focus isn’t on suspense the pacing can get very sluggish as I stated the script just isn’t strong enough to carry the movie for more than a few minutes at a time. The first half of the movie is when the film is at its strongest and despite the shortcomings of the script, Cozzi delivers some excellent suspense and while at times the pacing can be a little sluggish it’s made up for in suspense. However the 2nd half of the film is when the pacing gets very sluggish.

After a while the killer following the couple gets a bit tiresome and the investigation scenes lack any energy and while it was ok in the first half due to the suspense when the suspense lacks everything else does as well. Cozzi was trying to build the tension for the final act, but with weak characters it can fall a bit flat. However things get slightly back on track with a highly disturbing rape scene and while its not the most graphic, but for me it worked due to Laura being a virgin and due to Cristina Galbo who is amazing in the scene. Overall Cozzi delivers some solid suspense in the first half, but does lose it in the 2nd half with some decent moments mixed in with the sluggish pacing.

The cast here is great and Antoine Saint-John under the name Michael Antoine is excellent as the killer. I have seen a few of his movies and here he’s at his best as he is highly creepy. George Hilton while playing a cliched character like always is a blast to watch. As a fan of European cinema I have seen many of his films and always enjoy watching him. Cristina Galbo like always is great and amazingly beautiful; Cristina is as I stated one of my favorite actresses and this may not be her best film, but she’s still excellent here.

My review is mixed just like how the movie was very mixed in how it was excellent and sluggish in certain scenes. Originally I rated this one much higher, but the flaws as stated this time around did hinder my enjoyment. But with that said this may not be a great film, but it deserves more of an audience and even though it gets a lot wrong it also gets a lot right as well.

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The Case of the Bloody Iris (1972) Review by Dave Kaye

Posted in Case of the Bloody Iris, The with tags , , , , , on April 30, 2012 by Last Road Reviews

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THE CASE OF THE BLOODY IRIS

*** ½ Out of 5

Release Date- August 4th, 1972 (Italy)

Running Time- 94-Minutes

Rating- NR

Screenplay- Ernesto Gastaldi

Director- Giuliano Carnimeo (As Anthony Ascott)

Starring- George Hilton, Edwige Fenech, Annabella Incontrera, Paola Quattrini, Giampiero Albertini, Franco Agostini, Oreste Lionello

Most cite the 60s as when the first Giallo film was made and in the 70s these films reached their peak with the emergence of Dario Argento, Lucio Fulci and the continued success of Mario Bava who stared the Giallo; The Case of the Bloody Iris is pretty much the typical Giallo of its time and the formula for these movies are quite simple and in many ways these films can sort of be seen as the Italian slasher film as there is a thin line between them. As great as Italian cinema was in the 80s and despite how many great Giallo’s were released in the 80s nothing can top the 70s and Case of the Bloody Iris is an excellent if now flawed Giallo.

The screenplay was written by Ernesto Gastaldi who is no stranger to the Giallo; he wrote many of the more popular ones in the 70s most notable writing for Sergio Martino with such movies as Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh and Torso. The script is well written with some touches of comedy and while the comedy can be a little silly it isn’t over the top and does work rather well and offers something a little different than the norm; the investigation scenes while well written can at times be the only flaw in the script as it’s just not as interesting as many other movies like this. The actual mystery however is fairly strong and did have me guessing and while the identity of the killer may not be shocking I will admit I was caught off guard. The movie is driven more by the characters rather than action and while the characters may not have the most depth, Gastaldi does however create some fairly interesting characters that are able to keep things interesting when there are lulls in the action.

Director Giuliano Carnimeo going under the name Anthony Ascott does a solid job at keeping the pace moving along and there’s no shortage of suspects and nudity. The murder scenes are done well with some pretty good suspense and tension and while the investigation scenes can at times slow down the pace, Giuliano Carnimeo still is able to keep the movie above float. I can’t say I was ever bored with the movie, but at times the middle sections of the movie I did zone out just a little bit, but overall the movie is mostly always interesting and the scenes with the killer are well-done with some excellent moments of suspense, but this movie is more about the characters than the deaths and Carnimeo handles it well with only a few moments where things can lag.

The cast is solid led by the amazingly stunning Edwige Fenech as Jennifer. I haven’t seen a lot of her work, but what I’ve seen I have liked. You’ll be hard pressed to find a woman more beautiful than Edwige who I think might be the most beautiful woman I have ever seen and for me she was never more stunning than she was Case of the Bloody Iris. If you are a fan of Edwige this is essential viewing. George Hilton also stars as Andrea Barto and like Fenech I haven’t seen a whole lot of his work, but what I’ve seen I have liked. The two previously worked together in The Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh, which was produced by Luciano Martino who also produced The Case of the Bloody Iris.

Overall the Case of the Bloody Iris is an excellent Giallo that sadly is mostly forgotten and while it may not be one of the best this style of film has to offer it’s still an excellent movie with no shortage of nudity and suspense and like I said earlier does make for an excellent mystery and despite some slight pacing problems in the middle of the movie Case of the Bloody Iris deserves more attention than it gets.

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