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Review: The Bird with the Crystal Plumage

Wanted to watch a quick movie before bed. Since Thanksgiving-themed films are so difficult to come by, I decided to keep the Halloween spirit alive with a screening of The Bird with the Crystal Plumage on Fandor. 

This early Dario Argento effort is fairly typical of his work in the giallo genre, from its murder mystery plot to its black-clad, knife-wielding psychopath. Many of his usual stylistic flourishes, however, exist only in a sort of larval form: the kills aren’t nearly as graphic or elaborately-staged as those found in Deep Red and Opera, while the visuals lack the psychedelic charm of Suspiria and Inferno. It even predates the director’s collaboration with Goblin; instead, the legendary Ennio Morricone provides the music—a moody, atmospheric score that treats viewers to a slow, suspenseful haunted house tour, as opposed to the Three Mothers trilogy’s disorienting roller coaster ride. It’s a very different flavor of Argento… but it’s no less delectable.

[Originally written November 17, 2018.]

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