Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, November 16, 2017


Helmut Berger
THE BLOODSTAINED BUTTERFLY (aka Una farfalla con le ali insanguinate/1971). Director: Duccio Tessari.

A 17-year-old girl is found stabbed to death in a park. Newscaster Alessandro Marchi (Giancarlo Sbragia) is arrested for the crime and put on trial. Marchi has a reason for keeping silent about where he actually was that day, but he doesn't know that his lawyer, Giulio (Gunther Stoll) is having an affair with his wife, Maria (Ida Galli). Meanwhile, his daughter, Sarah (Wendy D'Olive), is fooling around with a moody pianist, Giorgio (Helmut Berger). While Marchi is on trial, there are more murders of young women ... This dubbed Italian thriller has a too leisurely pace and no real thrills, but it still manages to be absorbing for the most part and summon up some suspense, although the modestly surprising wind-up is a little too far-fetched. Although top-billed, Helmut Berger walks around looking strange and haunted, makes love on occasion, but hasn't really been given much of a character to play. The business with an associate of the police inspector always giving him coffee that is either too hot, cold or bitter quickly becomes tiresome. Tessari also directed Kiss Kiss Bang Bang.

Verdict: Passable mystery film with some twists. **1/2.


angelman66 said...

Helmut was one of the most beautiful men ever...he made a glorious Dorian Grey back in the late 1960s and was Luchino Visconti’s lover and muse...Need to check this one out.
- Chris

William said...

"Ludwig," in which he played the mad kind of Bavaria, or something like that, is on my list.