Saturday, October 27, 2012

The Fifth Cord

An alcoholic, assholish reporter investigates the assault of an upper-class acquaintance for a story (because I guess that's what reporters do?), and begins to uncover a weird, tangled web of, um, something or other. Not sure. Anyways, soon enough there is a killer on the loose, somehow tied to the case, and of course it's up to the reporter to stop him.

Giallos aren't often the most well structured of mysteries, but The Fifth Cord did strike me as particularly hard to follow. I paid attention, but looking back at it, I don't think I could explain what all the conspiracies and secrets and whatnot meant. Especially considering the movie tells us from the beginning that the killer is just a sick fuck who wants to see what it's like to kill; why all the hullaballoo about rich people with dark secrets and underground pornography clubs and all that jazz?

That's okay, though, because it's still a fun and damn good looking movie. It's not as overtly stylish as a lot of giallos were, but it was shot by a DP who went on to shoot, amongst other impressive entries on his resume, Apocalypse Now, Last Tango in Paris and Dick Tracy. Oh, and previously he had done Dario Argento's first film, The Bird With the Crystal Plumage. That kinda makes this a must see for anyone interested in the genre.

I'm not too familiar with star Franco Nero, but I did see him in Hitch-Hike earlier this month. And it's funny, because Nero also played a drunk in that film. He's more likable here (although not much; there's a scene where he slaps his girlfriend around, but then it's totally brushed off), but I wonder if that was a recurring theme in his performances. He's handsome and charismatic, but seems adept at playing unpleasant fuckups. The only other thing I can recall seeing him in is Django, but he's basically just doing an Eastwood impression in that. Might have to check out more of his films.

Rating: B-

No comments: