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Un Silencio de Tumba

Spain 1972
produced by
Jess Franco for Manacoa Films
directed by Jess Franco
starring Alberto Dalbés, Glenda Allen, Mario Álex, Montserrat Prous, Luis Induni, Francisco Acosta (as Gene Harris), Kali Hansa, Yelena Samarina, Manuel Pereiro, Caroline Rivière
screnplay by Jess Franco, based on a novel by Enrique Jarnes, music by Fernando García Morcillo, David Kuhne (= Jess Franco)

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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For the longest time, popular actress Annette Lamark (Glenda Allen) has put her own interest above everyone else's ... and thus, she has left her young (circa 5) son Christian in her sister Valerie's (Montserrat Prous) care in her own remote island home for the longest time. Valerie has come to hate her sister, mainly because she has grown to love poor abandoned Christian quite that much.

But now, Annette has decided to bring her lover Vincent (Mario Álex) and her entourage (also including two former lovers of hers [Luis Induni, Francisco Acosta]) to her island home with her for a bit of partying. Valerie despises all of them of course, except for the private detective Juan (Alberto Dalbés) Annette has brought along to guard her (rather ridiculous) jewelry ... and then, Christian is kidnapped. Annette of course is thrown into a film-worthy depression, but it's Annette's heart that's really broken. Problem is of course, the island this all takes place is so remote and so deserted that it has to be one of those in the house who has kidnapped Christian. What's even worse, Valerie's guests start dying like flies, starting with Vincent, actually, and even including Annette.

Eventually, the survivors are down to Valerie and Juan, and since Valerie hasn't done it, it has to be Juan, right? And now she finds out he has spent some time at a mental institution, too, and might be many things but not a private detecitve - which means the only man she has trusted, even fallen in love with, is the killer. Fortunately, Valerie grabs a gun before Juan can and manages to lock him in ... when out of nowhere, Vincent shows up and wants to kill her. You see, Vincent has faked his own death because he wanted to have his revenge on Annette and her entourage. Annette, it turns out, has once been his son's lover, but she was only with him to drain him of his money, then she dropped him like a rotten apple, upon which he killed himself - and thus Vincent has become a bigshot in the movie industry to become her lover and trap her and her friends on the island to kill them. Sure, Valerie had nothing to do with these people, but now Vincent of course can't let her go ... thing is, Vincent didn't know Valerie was still holding onto her gun because of Juan, and when he attacks her, she shoots him.

The happy ending re-unites her with Christian (this part is a bit murky), and Juan proposes to her. Turns out he might not have been a private detective, but the only reason he spent time in an insane asylum is because he's a psychiatrist, and Annette brought him along to look after Valerie ...

 

One of the most mainstream movies Jess Franco has ever made, a murder mystery of the 10 Little Indians-variety, devoid of nudity and sex and with very little in terms of tongue-in-cheek humour - and it looks and feels like a very decent movie, low budget, sure, but better than quite a few other low budget mysteries from the era - which is kind of the problem of the film: It lacks the signature style of Jess Franco, his spontaneity and inventiveness, the obsession that permeates all his best movies. Basically, it's just a run-of-the-mill murder mystery, and you really couldn't tell that it's a Jess Franco movie if you weren't told.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
Amazon!!!

 

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD