Monday, October 22, 2007

The Black Belly of the Tarantula

(1971) **

Just when I was starting to get impressed with Italian “who-dun-it” giallos, I watched Paolo Cavara’s disappointing The Black Belly of the Tarantula. This film contains a bunch of characters that I could care less if they died in the first 20 seconds of the film. In fact, I wished they had so it would have ended quicker.

The plot twists were lame, basically because they made little sense in the grand scheme of the movie, and there only purpose were to throw the viewer off the trail (let me add, there was no trail, no bread crumbs, nothing). There were no clues that pointed to the murderer. In fact, the character that turned out to be the killer, aside from when he was incognito murdering women in is his ridiculous 70’s outfit and hat, was shown for a miniscule few seconds at the beginning, a second towards the end, and in the final moments when revealed as the killer. His motive, which sucked, and had almost zero relevance to the rest of the film, was summed up in two sentences.

Now that I have ranted for a moment about how ghastly this film is, I suppose I should briefly provide you with the plot, infused with more ranting. Some of the clientele from a private beauty salon are turning up dead. The murderer injects the victims with a poison from a wasp, which paralyzes them, but keeps them conscious, while he cuts their bellies open with a knife.

Unfortunate for the victims, and the movie viewers, the dullest, whiniest, stupidest, inspector I ever encountered in a murder investigation is on the case. As the body count continues to rise, he often laments, “I don’t think I am cut out for this job.” He whimpers about an error in judgment he makes, which if done differently could have prevented a woman’s death and possibly stopped the killer, and then stupidly, he does it again (oops another death), which then almost results in the death of his wife. Of course, because it’s a movie the brainless inspector catches the murderer and saves the day, and the viewer feels no better for having watched this film.

“I don’t think I am cut out for this job.”

“I don’t think I am cut out for this job.”

I only gave this film two stars because my new favorite composer Ennio Morricone did the score.


DCD said...

Oh well, I guess we couldn't really expect them all to be winners. Great review, I especially loved the ranting!

I'mnotMarcbutmyboyfriendis said...

let me make sure you caught my recommendation -- if you dig morricone and you want to watch an actually cool movie, check out John Carpenter's The Thing.

octopunkybrewster did a nice review of it last year.

DCD said...


Fell on the floor on that one!

Whirlygirl said...

Thanks for the recommendation Marc. Maybe I will check it out this weekend.