Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The Onetti family's very low-end Argentine giallo, FRANCESCA, hits Blu-ray, DVD & CD

Putting the "lo" in giallo, this bizarre example of how-did-it-ever-get-made-let-alone-released? Italian giallo homage hit home video late last month. TrustMovies is catching up with it only now, and is posting this short review simply to give his readers warning. FRANCESCA is such a poorly-made movie -- flat, tiresome, pretentious and very nearly senseless -- that I can see no reason, even for die-hard giallo fans, to actually view it.

Though it cribs from Dante, that great Italian poet would cringe at how his work has been degraded. Aping the style and look of the 1970s (when giallo reigned supreme), the film was actually made, so far as I can determine, in 2015. I suppose this is an accomplishment of sorts. But the movie's plot is so minimal and dumb -- a bunch of murder victims strung together mostly by silliness -- and the screenplay a total embarrassment (plodding and hugely expository), that its co-writer (with his brother, Nicolás) and director, Luciano Onetti (shown at left) deserves little more than a loud, large raspberry. Granted that giallo is itself a rather low-end genre, but this is ridiculous.

The movie's only interesting moments come at its beginning and end, when the screen seems to literally open up vertically (and close back at the end), as a sliver of light expands slowly into full widescreen. What is on the screen, however, isn't worth that nifty opening/closing effect.

The writing and direction are amateur in the extreme, as are most of the performances. The film is arty-farty, as well. (Piano- playing in leather gloves: has any pianist ever managed that very well?)  The Onetti family -- who contributed to the writing, direction, music and acting -- has a lot to answer for.

Running a thankfully brief 80 minutes and being released by the only-too-appropriately-named Unearthed Films, Francesca comes to home video via the sometimes more discerning MVD Entertainment Group

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