Cold Eyes of Fear

1971 [ITALIAN]

Action / Crime / Horror / Thriller

Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten 13%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 13% · 250 ratings
IMDb Rating 5.4/10 10 919 919

Top cast

720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
838.61 MB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 31 min
Seeds 7
1.52 GB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 31 min
Seeds 10

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Bezenby 6 / 10

Ciao, geezers!

As far as I know this is Enzo Castellari's only venture into the giallo genre, and I'd also heard it wasn't that good. That's not true, and it's barely even a giallo, so maybe I should check my sources or just watch the film. Chocks away!

Sporting incredible sideburns, Gianni Garko is a posh solicitor who quite wisely spends his free time with strippers and hookers who on this occasion takes home an Italian lady. When I say home, I mean his rich uncle's home in a rich part of London. You know, the kind that has a butler in it and a driveway. The Italian lady is playing hard to get even though she's a hooker, and the discovery of the dead butler is a bad enough dampner on the proceedings, so sex totally goes out the window when a gun-toting cockney emerges from the gloom.

He's a kind of 'Alright Guvnor, knees ap Maaver Bhraaan' cockney type but his motivations are not quite clear. Adding to Gianni's woes is his uncle (Fernando Rey), who is a judge and keeps calling to harass him about case files. Fernando sends a policeman over to the house with some files, and while he's trying to whisper that he's being held hostage, the policeman punches him square in the face. Uh-oh! Looks like there's a doings-a-transpiring!

Turns out the copper is the head bad guy which isn't much of a surprise seeing as he's played by Frank Wolff. Frank's motivations aren't quite clear but he does mention quite early on that he's wired Fernando Rey's office to blow up the moment he opens his door, so now the game is on for Gianni to free himself and the hooker, get rid of Frank and his partner, and save Fernando in the nick of time. Either that or he can just have a lot of punch ups while the hooker plays mind games with the two of them.

As this is one of those films that could almost be a stage play in terms of limited set and characters, Enzo's usual hyperactivity makes sure that things don't get boring, so he throws in loads of jarring editing techniques, unusual camera angles (like filming Gianni through the bottom of a jug of icy water he's having his head forced into, or through those finger holes you used to get on telephones), loads of twists (even the cockney becomes unsure of Frank's motives), and an overly violent ending just to cap things off.

Although Fernando Rey shouts down the phone a lot and doesn't do much else, Frank and Gianni do well in their roles, with Frank constantly mocking Gianni's Eton and 'playing rugger', with Gianni alternating between snivelling wimp and stiff upper lip radge mentalness.

I've never seen an Enzo film I didn't like, so you might want to knock the praise in this review down a bit. Ennio Morricone's freeform jazz soundtrack is a winner too.

Reviewed by Stevieboy666 6 / 10

Did Dick Van Dyke dub this?

Looking at the various artworks for this joint Spanish/Italian movie it is easy to assume that it is a traditional looking giallo, but in fact it is more of a tense home invasion thriller. The opening scene is pure giallo and there are certainly elements throughout the movie of that genre, but for the most part it is a suspenseful crime thriller, though towards the end one of the characters starts to get some scary hallucinations. The fact that it takes place at night also helps create some fear. Set in London I loved the street scenes, looked to my like it was probably done without permission as many passers-by can been seen looking at the action. Ennio Morricone provides an excellent soundtrack, very cool, and of all the cast Giovanna Ralli as a prostitute called Anna was my favourite character. However the movie is hardly a classic and the laughable "Cockney" accents of the two criminals, in particular of Quill (Julian Mateos), spoil any menace, I've docked it a couple of points for that. Could they not have employed somebody better to dub these two??

Overall, for fans of Italian crime and giallo movies it is definitely worth a watch, but maybe not a repeat.

Reviewed by Leofwine_draca 7 / 10

Effective suspense flick - but it's not a giallo

This is often wrongly mislabelled as a giallo movie, thanks to the entirely gratuitous sex scene that opens the film. In it, a mysterious man (we never see his face) stalks a blonde woman (genre regular Karin Schubert) in her lingerie, gradually cutting off her clothing with a flick knife before he beds her. Anyone watching this will understandably think they're in for a sex-obsessed and entirely sleazy murder mystery, but then the camera pans back to reveal we're watching a show and the real film starts.

This is a hostage thriller, set in a single location as a couple of people are trapped in a house with two violent killers. The premise has been done over and over again (as in the Bruce Willis flick HOSTAGE) but that's because it's such a filmable premise and easy to get right. The good news is that this film is a success, largely thanks to direction from Enzo G. Castellari. This Italian director was one of the biggest names in action cinema and as a result we get a film chock full of tense stand offs and brutal fist-fights, along with the stylish camera-work we know and love from this director.

The script is intelligent and the various characters have believable machinations. Acting is spot on, with honours going to the American Frank Wolff as the shady copper who turns out to be the chief villain. Wolff brings equal parts humanity and equal parts villainy to his character and it's a barnstorming performance not to be trifled with. While Gianni Garko makes for an entirely unsympathetic hero – he's just too weedy and self-centred, the leading actress is easy on the eye and an equal force to be reckoned with. Heavyweight support is lent by the ever-good Fernando Rey and the film as a whole rips along, never boring or slow, always adding to the tension and suspense. The finale is perhaps unsurprisingly violent and brutal, but it works and provides a fitting coda to what is a very effective suspense flick.

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