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García Vázquez), barman of the Stardust Club and police
informer, has disappeared, and his buddy, sergeant detective Miguel Mora (Fernando
Fernán Gómez) is quick to suspect Leprince (Jean Servais), a
rich businessman running for senator, who promises to bring justice to the
region but seems to have his hands in every dirty business in town. In his
desperate attempts to find Juan, Mora goes to Leprince's house to accuse
him personally - bad idea, because now Leprince knows Mora is after him,
so his men throw Juan's corpse through into Mora's house through a window
that night. Mora however is not one to give up this easily, and since this
incident has only infuriated in, he storms into Leprince's office at the
Stardust Club to ... well, I don't know what exaclty he wanted to do, but
Leprince's men beat him up really badly, then throw him into the sea to
drown. Luckily though, two of Juan's friends (Dina Loy, Luis Marín) who
mistake Mora for Juan save him from certain death. However, Leprince sees
to it that Mora soon gets fired from his job at the police, even if the
chief of police (Antonio Prieto) is sympathetic to his cause.
Juan was a personal friend of his, Mora is passionate of the case, so not
being a policeman anymore can't stop him from investigating further.
However, somebody else seems to be enthusiastic about the whole case as
well, somebody who one by one kills the people responsible for Juan's
death (their identities being pretty much an open secret by now).
Laverne (Maria Vincent) is Leprince's lover and the singer at the
Starlight Club, but she also was Juan's girl once and has never quite
forgotten him, so eventually she turns to Mora to pass some information on
to him - information that Mora uses to force the chief of police into
raiding the Starlight Club, where tons of drugs are found hidden in the
Leprince is quick to realize it must have been Nina who
tipped off the police, so he kills her together with his henchman Miralles
(Manuel Gas), then they ditch the corpse into the sea, and Leprince helps
Miralles skip town in a freight train - where Miralles is found and killed
by the mystery killer, who then turns out to be Pilar (Laura Granados),
Mora searches Juan's apartment and finds a busload of
loveletters - including some very passionate ones written by Pilar. He
returns home just to tell her that he'll leave her, and leaves the
loveletters with her as explanation. Pilar now wants to kill the man who
has caused everything, Leprince, but her eyes are clouded by tears on the
drive there, so she drives her car over a cliff and dies.
Mora calls the
chief of police and persuades him to raid Leprince's home, then he gets
there ahead of the police, forces Leprince to open his safe and hand over
incriminating evidence at gunpoint, then intentionally gives Leprince
access to a weapon which he uses to shoot Mora - and that was exactly the
mistake Mora wanted him to make, because the police has just arrived on
the scene, and now Leprince is a murderer, and there is no more loophole
for even the most powerful politicians. Leprince tries to make an escape,
but is eventually shot dead by the chief of police.
pulpy crime thriller that shows director Jess Franco, still early in his
career, at his best: He shows directorial verve and elegance, at the same
time makes the movie look hip, shows inventiveness in terms of
cameraangles and cameramovement, and tips his head to classic Hollywood
film noir without ever becoming a mere copycat. Also, he shows his mastery
in staging musical numbers and weaving them into the film's crime plot.
Add to this a great plot full of plottwists, a competent cast, nice
locations and one of Daniel J.White's best scores, and you are left with a
pretty good film.