SEVEN DEATHS IN THE CATS EYES (1973)
aka La morte negli occhi del gatto
Article 4692 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Antonio Margheriti
Featuring Jane Birkin, Hiram Keller, Francoise Christophe
Country: France / Italy / West Germany
What it is: Mad family saga
Someone is murdering the residents of a Scottish castle while a cat malevolently looks on.
I have to admit that I was blindsided by this movie a bit, largely because the title simply screams “Giallo” while the movie itself owes more to the Italian horror movies of the previous decade. The movie actually starts out rather promising, and there are some stylish moments and memorable scenes here; the cat of the title also seems to have a nice, effective glare in his eye. However, the plot is a muddle (I think it has something to do with a power struggle within the castle, but it’s hard to tell), it throws in horror elements that are left dangling in midair (there’s talk about vampires that leads nowhere and a gorilla on the loose that just seems to vanish from the story), and it throws in sex just to throw in sex. Granted, since most of the print I saw of the movie was dubbed into English (there’s a few scenes where it looks like the originally Italian print was used with subtitles), I wonder if those preparing it for the English-speaking nations took much care with it; certainly the lack of an apostrophe in the English title shows a certain carelessness. I’d have to say this one is a mixed bag.