Giallo (2009)

Posted: May 28, 2012 in Movie Review
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Giallo (2009)

Directed By: Dario Argento

Starring: Adrien Brody, Emmanuelle Seigner, Robert Miano, Elsa Pataky

Subgenre: Thriller, Serial Killer


Synopsis: Detective Avolfi tracks down a serial killer, known only as Giallo.

Thoughts: Giallo’s path to North America has been a rough one.  The release was tied up in court as star Adrien Brody challenged that he was not paid for his role in the movie.  To top that off, Dario Argento has publicly stated that he dislikes the final cut.  Despite this, I was eager to sit down and watch Giallo.

I was hoping for a throwback to Argento’s glory days, when he gave us some of the greatest Giallo’s out there.  I was a bit shocked to discover that this isn’t a Giallo.  The killer is known as Giallo (Italian for yellow), because of a severe case of jaundice which causes his skin to turn yellow.  It plays like a pretty standard serial killer movie.

The acting is pretty decent, with Adrien Brody playing both the detective and the killer, under a heavy dose of makeup.  Brody tends to be pretty hit or miss for me, and this isn’t one of his strongest roles, but he gets the job done.  I thought his turn as the killer was better than his work as the detective.  He was generally creepy with all that makeup on.

I mentioned that Dario Argento was not happy with the final cut, but even with that in mind,  Giallo is a far cry from his best work. His work on Masters of Horror impressed me, and I was really hoping he was returning to form, but between Mother of Tears and this, it appears he is not.  I’m not looking forward to his latest project, Dracula 3D, either.  It seems as if Giallo has Argento’s typical violent deaths, but lacks the sense of style that movies like Suspiria and Opera showcased.

I’m sure most Argento fans have checked this out, or will, but it is difficult to recommend.  There isn’t anything special going on here, which is too bad.  Bringing together Dario Argento and an A-list actor should have netter better results, but Giallo is decidedly mediocre.  It’s not horrible, but it’s not great either.


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