Friday, November 20, 2015

Girl In Room 2A

Italy, 1974
Directed by: William Rose
Stars: Daniela Giordano, Raf Vallone, John Scanlon, Rosalba Neri, Brad Harris

Reviewed By Michael Hauss

After a fantastic opening scene, where a woman is abducted, drugged and taken to a secret location, hung from a ceiling by her hands and then knifed repeatedly and then cut down and impaled on a stake on the wall by a red masked assailant dressed in ancient executioner clothing (sadly not as campy as the executioner in BLOODY PIT OF HORROR), we are introduced to Margaret (Daniela Giordano) a woman who has just been released from prison for a crime she says she did not commit. She goes to stay at the boarding house of a Mrs. Grant (Giovanna Galetli), whose son Frank (Angelo Infanti) also lives there. The Grant's are nice enough to allow women to stay in room 2A in their boarding house after they are released from jail, but the women keep disappearing from that room. The Margaret character does a lot of hallucinating and seems to be on the verge of a hysterics, but can't muster enough enthusiasm or acting prowess to pull it off.  Daniela Giordano as Margaret seems to play the part with a naive stupidity and really can't figure the role out, nice to look at, but not quite right for the part. Giordano did far better in the films YOUR VICE IS A LOCKED ROOM AND ONLY I HAVE THE KEY (Italy, 1972), the Mario Bava directed film FOUR TIMES THAT NIGHT (Italy, W. Germany, 1972) and  HAVE A NICE FUNERAL MY FRIEND...SARTANA WILL PAY (Italy, Spain, 1970).

These Macramé hangers really spruce up my sex dungeon

We lose all momentum from this point as everyone seems to be hiding something or lying about things, case in point being Frank telling Margaret that his father drowned, but his mother told her he was run over by a driver who had just robbed a supermarket. Frank is a bit of an odd bird, his room is filled with mannequins and a small guillotine, kind of a Norman Bates Momma boy thing going on here. The first night in Margaret's room she finds a blood spot on her carpet and for some reason just cleans it up and then does so again on subsequent nights, no investigating or reporting this oddity, just cleans it up. The film introduces Jack (John Scanlon), who's sister Edie supposedly killed herself at the Grant' s house, he does not buy that it was suicide and asks Margaret to help him by spying around the house. Jack eventually gets a room at a place across the alley from the boarding house and together with Margaret they begin to try and solve what is going on, but these two ain't no Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson, that's for sure, they are downright stupid together and through pure luck figure this mess out. Margaret is aided by a social worker who originally set her up in the Grant house, the social worker is played by the drop dead gorgeous Rosalba Neri (LADY FRANKENSTEIN, Italy, 1971).

The film really bogs down after the beginning scene and is shot in a depressing hue of colors, with very little natural light and many night scenes. A cult is killing beautiful young women after being released from jail, a cult of correctness lead by a Mr. Dresse played by Raf Vallone, they take the law in there own hands, while also wallowing in the filth of their own sadistic sexual pleasures, cleansing evil from beautiful women. The film really takes off in the last 20 minutes or so and really needs to be seen to be believed, as the blood flows freely and torture takes center stage, the ending is crazy, with everything spiraling out of control, it almost makes you forget how boring the rest of the movie was, almost.

Toss me up an ice cold Stella Artois (the most eurotrash beer I can think of)

The talented and very lovely Karin Schubert (COMPANEROS, Italy, Spain, W. Germany, 1970, COLD EYES OF FEAR, Italy, Spain, 1971) is there towards the end to basically get naked and then be killed, again nice to look at, but a waste of a talented actress. Ex-strongman Brad Harris is along also and plays Charlie, who was Jack's sister Edie's ex-boyfriend who got her into some legal problems, he aids Jack in his pursuit to save Margaret after she is kidnapped at the end. So here's the story, watch the first ten minutes, the scenes with Rosalba Neri and the last twenty insane minutes and call it a day.

These face snuggies are cozy

Bottom line is this film was terrible, the performances, the lighting and direction are all lacking. While this film is technically a Giallo film, it builds zero suspense and was very easy to figure out. Watch it but do so with the remote close by, so you can fast forward...because this film is a murky, deceptive affair that can at times be torturous to sit through.


Get away from me Burt Young, I can smell your gorgonzola cologne from here

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