Il Mostro di Firenze (Night Ripper, 1986)

German Film Art Limited Blu-ray combo DVD edition

Leonard Mann (usually in spaghetti westerns) as the author Andreas Ackerman writing a book about the murders

Text below written 2016-09-09


I haven't heard much good about this late entry to the Giallo genre and was pleasantly surprised to see that the film were
much more ambitiously made than i thought. Sure, it's a B movie in the genre (and then i guess it's a C movie in the whole
movie world, as a giallo film, even though a giallo is at the top in it's genre it's supposed to be strictly B there - yes, it's weird
but in the mainstream shitty film world a masterpiece by Argento or Mario Bava is thought of as B film - sickening isn't it?).
BUT even though the actors are somewhat second rate it's an interesting effort from director, scriptwriter Ferrario.
The subject of the film is the real life serial killings in/around Florence/Firenze, Italy occurring between 1968 and 1985,
and much have been written about these hideous crimes and also filmed in documentaries and feature films (this one and at
least another one) and the perpetrator has never been caught.

The Killer committed his crimes in Lover's Lanes, places where people made love in parked cars (or in one case a tent) and
killed them using a pistol, showing sharp-shooting abilities. Afterwards he violated the bodies of the females and cut out their
body parts as genitalia ... yuck!

French couple, 1985

With the real crimes as a basis director Ferrario ambitiously tries to do a psychological study of the murderers mind and the
possible reason/background to his deeds. It's a slow film but he builds up a tension anyway in the mind games of an author
trying to make a mental picture of the killer, of whom he could be and why ? It's an interesting and unusual approach to a crime
movie and gives food for thought, and the film deserves much more accolades than given it on IMDB and other film sites.
Cesare Ferrario should be praised for his efforts to make something somewhat intelligent in the genre, even though he for sure
made no masterpiece. But the film is good, not great but good and a far way from being trashy, even though sometimes slow

WARNING for spoilers below ..........
.............................................................

Ditto couple

Much of the happenings in this film, if not most, takes place in the head of an author, Andreas Ackerman (Leonard Mann, he
seems to be known mostly for his roles in B-movie spaghetti westerns) who is writing a book about the Firenze killings.

The film starts the 8th of September 1985 with the killing of a tourist french couple (in the pics above) making love in their
tent at the outskirts of Florence. A man peeps and approach the tent and shoots them with a pistol and start doing disgusting
things with the body of the dead woman (luckily we see this from behind, but it's disgusting anyway).
The day after media flocks the crime scene including journalists Enrico (Gabriele Tinti) and Julia (Bettina Giovanni), the girlfriend
of Andreas. The Killer committed 16 murders between 68-85 and only killed in the summer when a full moon was up.

Crime scene

We are shown the double murders with a start in 1968 and a young man, earlier snubbed by the female victim, follows the much
older woman and her lover and shoots them when they make out in a car. He's from a rich family, elegantly dressed and he
lives with his domineering mother, he blends in and avoids suspicion. Andreas may have seen the murderer many times.
But, this theories about the persona of the murder and the re-enactments of the killings are all figments of Andreas brain, when
he's planning the writing of his book and discusses the case with his beautiful girlfriend.

This Blu-ray disc edition from impressive German company Film Art presents this film, for the first time says the sleeve, in HD
1.66:1 widescreen 1080 p. and a DTS HD-Master Audio soundtrack italian language with english subtitles (and a german dub
for backwards German cretins ... i suppose. I just can't understand why a leading industrial country in the world needs the dubbing
of foreign films, are they too lazy to learn english? Anyway it's an abomination listening to german dubbed films, yuck .... ).
The FilmArt gialli editions really needs to be checked into, this film seems to be no.6 in the series. The Blu-ray may be region ALL
as i can't se any B anywhere?
On the bluray you can choose between the 101 min long international version and the italian original 97 min version (96 min 33 sec)

The DVD version has the italian language audio in mono and plays the 97 min version

The only extras are an italian trailer, some other gialli trailers and a Leaflet with texts about the real Firenze Killings Case and
about the crew and the cast - but in german only. The sleeve says this combo edition is limited to only 1000 copies

Final verdict: This film is a B giallo but with many A qualities: It's sombre and depressing, a mood that suits these grisly crimes well
and it's interestingly made trying to probe into the psychological background of the perpetrator. Afterwards some scenes are staying
with me - the ones where Andreas may have, or not, met the killer. These were impressive and suggestive.
Others were just slow and hampered by flat acting. But Yes, you remember it at least and the film is much better than the rumour says


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