Title: Something Creeping in the Dark

Also known as:
Qualcosa Striscia Nel Buio
Shadows in the Dark
Something Is Crawling in the Dark

Year: 1971

Genre: Thriller / Giallo / Supernatural

Language: English (Dubbed)

Runtime: 96 min

Director: Mario Colucci

Writer: Mario Colucci

IMDb: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0066267/

Plot:
A random collection of people that includes; a convicted murder, two police officers, a married couple, a doctor and his assistant and the home owners. Become stranded and isolated, due to a flood, in a mansion that was once owned by a woman who practiced black magic. Strange things start to occur after a failed seance.

Our thoughts:
I'm certainly no expert when it comes the giallo sub-genre since I haven't seen that many, the ones I have seen such as "Tenebre", "Your Vice Is A Locked Room and Only I Have The Key", and "Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh", were extremely impressive. So for a change of pace I decided to pull a movie out of my obscure giallo collection, (I haven't seen that many movies, but yet I still collect the rare and hard to find ones. Go figure.) and with my luck I happen to pick one that was not only terrible, but doesn't even really seem like a giallo movie.

Well lets first take a look at why, I don't believe "Something Creeping in the Dark" qualifies as a giallo. While I'll leave the final word and this argument for the giallo experts, I've always been under the impression that movies were really murder-mystery while keeping a thriller/suspense atmosphere. None of which is in the movie, it is a supernatural movie that reminded me of the original "The Haunting" more so than anything else. Which is odd since the way it sets itself up in the beginning by giving the audience red herrings, of who could be a killer amongst the people who become isolated in the mansion. Such as the obvious convicted murderer, an abusive boyfriend who goes as far as to threaten to kill his girlfriend who also just happens to by the home owner, as well as some other characters. It becomes irrelevant though once the ghost story about the house is told, and a seance is held to contact the woman who use to live in the house, who also just so happened to practice black magic. There's a shocker. After the seance, it becomes a straight up supernatural movie and makes it no secret as to who the killer is, or why they are doing it. So right there, the mystery aspect is tossed right out the window not to mention any form of suspense.

Which is also where the movie fails, not just as a giallo but as a good movie in general. The first thing I noticed that was odd, is how there is no music at all in the beginning which really works against the movie in helping to set a mood. What's even more shocking is when there is finally music, it is so awful that it was actually better when there was none. The music is so loud and obnoxious that it becomes intrusive, due to the fact that it drowns out all of the other audio in the movie, including any characters' dialogue. Then there are the characters... A collection of some of the most unlikable and annoying people. Just in the beginning, the characters manage to cause massive disinterest simply because they spend their time bitching at one another instead of talking. Anytime somebody says anything, it is usually followed by someone else making a snide remark in return or telling them to be quite. Of course the atrocious acting doesn't help any, when you have one woman who looks like she's half asleep through out the movie. Others being completely wooden and sounding like they're reading their lines right off the script, and plenty of awkward and laughable situations. How can you have a scene of the convicted murder fighting the police inspector, in which he comes very close to killing him, only to have them both calmly talking about the rising water line a few seconds later? It doesn't stop with that scene though, plenty more stupid and absurd scenes will follow.

I could pick apart this movie down to bone with everything from the uninteresting story, to the horrible acting, characters, dialogue, music (when it's there) to some of the dullest cinematography and sets I've seen for an Italian horror movie. Though it all pales in comparison to one of the most anti-climatic endings that I believe I've ever seen. I didn't know what to make of it, I mean, how can you when your characters just walk off as if they are even fed up with the movie. As I said I won't get into the argument of whether or not this can actually be considered a giallo or not, but as far as recommending this movie goes. I'd say its best left for the giallo and Italian cinema aficionados.


Positive things:
- Hell if I know.
Negative things:
- For an Italian movie, it's pretty skimpy on both the violence and the sleaze.
- The acting.
- An overbearing score, that isn't used almost until the last half of the movie.
- Unlikable characters.
- The doctor and his assistant, anytime either one of them spoke they always talked about peoples nerves.

Rating:
Gore: 0.5/5
Nudity: 1/5
Story: 2/5
Effects: 0.5/5
Comedy: 0/5

We bought this movie from:
N/A

Reviewed by:
Preston




 

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