Nur Tote Zeugen Schweigen (1962)

aka Hypnosis, Dummy of Death, Ipnosi
Article 2587 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 5-5-2008
Posting Date: 9-12-2008
Directed by Eugenio Martin
Featuring Gotz George, Heinz Drache, Jean Sorel
Country: Italy/Spain/West Germany

A thief is framed for the murder of a famed hypnotist/ventriloquist. The thief attempts to elude arrest while hatching a plan to trap the real murderer. The police investigate. Oddest of all, the ventriloquist’s dummy has mysteriously vanished…

In some ways, this odd little thriller is rather intriguing. Going into it, a quick survey of the alternate titles led me to believe we were going to have another ventriloquist-and-his-dummy/alter-ego movie, but such is not the case. The plot takes a number of interesting turns and twists, and certain scenes are rather striking; I like the one where the thief saves the life of the policeman chasing him and then immediately knocks him out. The subplot of the dummy, combined with the fact that IMDB classifies this movie as science fiction had me prepared for some fascinating revelations at the end. Unfortunately, as it turns out, IMDB’s classification of the movie is unexplainable; though there may be some science fiction elements very early in the plot (the hypnotist’s act features doctors and x-rays), they are minor and unimportant to the story, and the final revelations turn out to be very disappointing. In short, this is one of those movies in which the ride is much more interesting than the final destination.



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