61 Days of Halloween: The Case of the Bloody Iris (1971)


For an introduction to the concept of 61 Days of Halloween, as well as a list of previously featured titles, please go here.

The Case of the Bloody Iris is a giallo film from 1971 by director Giuliano Carmineo. It’s written by Ernesto Gastaldi based on his own story. Now as is the case with many Giallo films it could end up being “just another one,” especially considering that this one does take place, at least in part, in the world of fashion (as quite a few do). Staple actors of the genre Edwige Fenech and George Hilton are leads. A lot of it boils down to how it all shakes out in the end.

Without spoiling it, I was highly satisfied with the result of the whodunit. There were, in my estimation, a few unsavory possibilities in that regard, and the best path was taken. The outcome does leave a question or two, but most of it works.

Yes, there are a few elements that do date it however some of the representations (both in terms of ethnicity and sexuality) while ensconced in the lack of political correctness of the day are somewhat departures from the norm, which was refreshing to see.

The mystery is cloistered about one building. The police involvement can be counted on for a bit of bumbling, and comedy, but they are mostly competent. It’s just that the enigmatic nature of the case does prove to be a rather difficult one.

For as many complications this film foists upon itself and engaging in the occasional flashback sequence, it never gets confusing which is another win for it. And, on a pet peeve note: gialli have some of the greatest, most florid titles in cinema. However, the more often than note end up being a bit of a stretch (one example would be The House with the Laughing Windows) that is not the case here. Despite its strong elements I can’t say it’s a great giallo, but it is a good one that is worth seeing if you’re a fan of the genre.


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