Sunday, May 16, 2010

Trenta Giorni di Giallo-Day One: Libido

Available at

So the ice is broken, and I have just finished my first of a thirty day journey into all things giallo.

Again, the readers got to choose this night's movie.  So lemme return the favor and talk about it.

Ernesto Gastaldi is a name that many giallo enthusiasts certainly know of, but he doesn't get mentioned that often.  I believe this is mainly because his input came mostly from off the set.  Gastaldi has written many gialli, collaborating with Lucio Fulci and Sergio Martino.  Some of his more well-known scripts in the giallo-world include The Case of the Bloody Iris and All The Colors of the Dark.  He also worked on the script for Sergio Leone's final film, Once Upon a Time in America.

But the entire genre probably wouldn't be here without Gastaldi.  So many gialli have his hand in it that it's positively headspinning.  I don't know how he slept during the 70's.

Yet, remarkably, Libido is the only giallo he directed.

Lemme get to the plot:

Christian returns to his childhood home, twenty years after witnessing his father murder his mistress.  In three months, Christian will turn 25 and inherit his father's estate.  However, he has to be mentally stable enough to receive it.  Visiting the house is the final test to prove his sanity.

Along for the ride are his wife, Eileen; Paul, who has been watching over the estate and acted as a surrogate father to Christian; and Brigitte, Paul's bubbleheaded sexpot wife.

I won't get into too many details here.  Instead I'll just say it doesn't go along like Christian planned.  Or anyone else for that matter.

Anyhow, things start off low-key, but things never get boring.  Instead Libido has a slow-burn intensity to it.  Then before you know it, there's double-crosses, triple-crosses, and all sorts of twists and turns.  This setup lets us know the characters more, and care for Christian as his mental health crumbles all around him.

Overall this is a giallo that should be sought out by any aficionado.  But as I mentioned before, this isn't a body-count extravaganza like many gialli from this 70's and beyond.  This one requires a bit of investment, but it'll reward you in the end.

Okay.  I'm off to bed.  I only had two of my three Jack Daniel's mini-bottles.  I have a feeling I'm gonna need the last one for tomorrow's selection.



  1. cool pick and a great beginning, captain. i don't think i've even heard of that one. oh and i gave you a little shoutout over at CinSom.

  2. Thanks for the shoutout. I didn't hear of that one until I read my little Holy Grail of Gialli, Blood & Black Lace. Nice little find. I got it from ZDD Visual Media before they shut down, but the disc mentioned Luminous Film and Video Works (, so it may be available there too. Worth tracking down.