The Killer Nun (1978)

THE KILLER NUN (1978)
aka Suor Omicidi
Article 3405 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 10-29-2010
Posting Date: 12-10-2010
Directed by Giulio Berruti
Featuring Anika Ekberg, Paola Morra, Alida Valli
Country: Italy
What it is: Nunsploitation giallo

Sister Gertrude (who suffers from hypochondria, is addicted to morphine, is having a nervous breakdown and leads a double life to fulfill her sexual desires) has a problem; patients at the hospital where she works keep turning up dead around her. Is she also a homicidal maniac?

IMDB places this one under several genres, including mystery. Me, I find the mystery element extremely weak here; it’s so obvious who the killer is that I can’t believe they actually try to make it a big revelation at the end. The movie walks the line between nunsploitation and giallo. The stylistic touches here are bizarre and confusing, but not really ineffective. At least one of the murders is truly sadistic. I remember seeing Anita Ekberg in SCREAMING MIMI which I covered several years ago; for what it’s worth, she’s a much better actress in this movie than she was in that one, though I don’t think she quite pulls it off. If my review seems a little disjointed, then that’s appropriate; the movie itself is so, and sometimes I found myself wondering if it was a comedy, especially in the earlier scenes. All in all, it’s a real mixed bag, but at least I’ve never quite seen anything like it.

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