Paranoia (1969)

aka Orgasmo

Article 3601 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 6-9-2011
Posting Date: 6-24-2011
Directed by Umberto Lenzi
Featuring Carroll Baker, Lou Castel, Colette Descombes
Country: Italy / France
What it is: Giallo

A rich widow moves to Europe and gets into an affair with a down-on-his-luck man. However, the man has a sister… and the two of them are not quite sane…

For the record, I will give the movie some points for keeping under wraps just what kind of story it is, so a number of the twists in the second half of the movie do actually come as surprises. Unfortunately, for the most part it’s one of those movies that’s about an unhappy, fragile woman being tormented, which is a concept I’ve never enjoyed all that much. Furthermore, it’s one of those movies where all of the characters are unpleasant and unlikable (including the tormented woman), and so I find myself spending a lot of time just wishing the movie would finish up and be done with it. It’s not near as sexy as the alternate title would lead you to believe, but it wasn’t really until the seventies that movies like this would get really permissive. And I could really do without the deus ex machina ending. In short, it’s passable and has its moments, but I didn’t find it particularly enjoyable.


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