Murder Rock (Dancing Death / Slashdance / Murderock: Uccide a passo di danza, 1984)

US Scorpion Releasing Blu-ray edition - region A stated on sleeve

 

This film may not be among Fulci's best gialli but i was pleasantly surprised over how much i enjoyed watching it this time.
It was better than i remembered it to be and i found it juxtaposing slick dancing and luscious dancers with a wintry grey
NY with lots of slush. New York, or in the Fulci Atlas - New York Ripper land, and shot by Giuseppe or Joseph Pinori.

It's understandable that i found it to be much better when watching "Murder Rock" today, beginning of July 2022, compared to
with my more lukewarm reaction when watching it on DVD in 2006 (the US Shriek Show 2 disc edition, se pic below). At that
time we've had an avalanche of great Gialli DVD releases, the best films in the genre from the best directors, the best Argento,
Martino, Lenzi and from Lucio Fulci himself ( "Lizard in a Woman's Skin", "Don't Torture a Duckling" and "New York Ripper")
and when the minor gialli one's started to to turn up you were spoiled a little. Today with all the awful CGI infested crap coming
at you one surely could be maybe overly enthusiastic when watching one of the masters minor gialli.
But this was a FINE Lucio Fulci giallo, maybe not great but fine, and with some impressive murder Set Pieces.

The first time i watched this film was waaay back and on an Austrian VHS tape i bought in Vienna when travelling through in
1989. All fun horror films were either banned or cut to pieces in Sweden back then, but i think this austrian copy also were
censored with a shortened needle murder. Well, the sleeve looked luscious at least. That summer i bought a lot of uncut VHS
horror gems in Greece and also Netherlands, Belgium and France (SECAM) had uncut films on VHS.

OK, enough with Old Geezer ramblings and on to the film:

After an annoying intro with a NY skyline and people doing break-dance to awful 80's music blaring out we find ourselves in
a Dance Studio. Alright, on with the leotards and legwarmers, but we're not saved yet as we get to see a class of young dancers
do Disco Dancing .... in a looong number. These youngsters, dance students really, are sweating it out and they have something
to strive for as 3 of them will be picked to dance in a Broadway show, and the relations between the dancers are strained.
Then the murders start. When the first victim, Susan is about to take a shower she's murdered in the locker room with the giallo perp
using a long needle and sticking it into her heart (and the beautiful actress in this scene Angela Lemerman may be ungoogleable).
In the audio commentary Troy Howarth says the dancers in this film mostly are obscure to the film world and with few if not none
more film to their filmography because they were actual dancers and not actors.

Above: The 2006 US Shriek Show 2 disc DVD

The sarkastic Lieutenant Borges (Cosomo Cinieri) investigates the murder case, and these are some of the suspects: The manager
of the Dance Studio, Gibson (Claudio Cassinelli), the mysterious Mr. Webb who hangs around the studio (Ray Lovelock), the
teachers Candice (Olga Karlatos, our main protagonist in this film) and Margie (Geretta Geretta, the first zombie in 1986 "Demons"),
and then we've the dancers, Janice, Jill and Gloria and Jill's handicapped brother. Who killed Susan ? Then the murders continues.
Susans boyfriend Willy is played by Christian Boromeo and he can be seen in Argento's "Tenebre", and a Brazilian dancer who
plays the 2nd victim in the film, Janice, does "Erotic Disco Dancing in a Club", ever heard of that and it's quite sexy, admitted.
Lucio Fulci makes a cameo playing a producer friend of Candice. Keith Emerson made the Soundtrack.

The film is presented in anamorphic widescreen 1.85:1 with english or italian audio DTS-HD MA 2.0 and with english subtitles.
Please Note: Region A is stated on the sleeve.
Scorpion Releasing Extras: Audio commentary by film historian Troy Howarth, Interview with actress Geretta Geretta (25 minutes
in english, made in 2018), Interview with make-up artist Franco Casagni (14 minutes in italian with subs, 2018), Trailers

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The Old Shriek Show 2006 2 disc DVD edition had these specs:
Presented in anamorphic widescreen 1.85:1. Audio commentary by cinematographer Giuseppe Pinori and journalist Federico Caddeo
Disc 2: Tempus Fugit - An inside look at director Lucio Fulci (directed by Daniel Gouyette) and with Dario Argento, Ray Lovelock,
Luigi Cozzi et al., Portrait of Cinematographer Giuseppe Pinori, Portrait of Ray Lovelock, Lovelock about Murder Rock, Gallery

 

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