(aka 'Murder to the Tune of the Seven Black Notes' or 'Seven Notes in Black' or 'The Psychic')

Directed by Lucio Fulci
Italy 1977

 

Lucio Fulci was a versatile talent. Before he carved a name for himself in the early eighties with gory epics like The Beyond (1981) he made some Argento style gialli and this is one of the best. The film successfully blends a dreamlike quality with an intricate, multilayered story co-written by Fulci and the extremely hardworking Dardano Sachetti (let's face it the man must be a genius).

Jennifer O'Neill is the psychic woman who as a child had a vision of her mother's actual death and who later as an adult has a puzzling vision of a woman being walled up in the same fashion as in Edgar Allan Poe's The Black Cat. Recently married O'Neill then spends some time at her rich husband's lonely country estate where she discovers the room from her vision, and a dead body behind the wall...

This being a giallo there's several plot twists as the film develops but they are carried out with unusual effectivety and partially thanks to Sergio Salvati's incredible cinematography the film becomes involving and atmospheric. That Fulci might have intended this as some sort of commentary on the giallo genre is evident in the recurrence of the color yellow/giallo in O'Neill's key vision, there's the cigarette with yellow wrapping paper, a magazine cover with the text "giallo" and a broken mirror with a golden yellow frame.

Excerpt from Euro Trash Reviews (Kristoffer Gansing) located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: August 10th, 1977

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DVD Review: Severin - Region 1 - NTSC

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Distribution Severin - Region 1 - NTSC
Runtime 1:37:15 
Video 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.0 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s  

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate:

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0 mono) 
Subtitles English (only when Italian text information is shown), None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Severin

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio 1.85:1

Edition Details:

• Voices From the Black (27:25)
• Trailer (1:09)

DVD Release Date: October 30th, 2007

Keep Case
Chapters: 10

 

Comments:

Most fans will be pleased with this single-layered transfer from Severin - anamorphic and progressive - it suffers somewhat from a bit of softness and dullish colors but overall the image quality presents itself as quite acceptable. The audio is in original English (with obvious post production DUB'ing of some actors) - it's a bit hushed at times with some minor hiss and optional subtitles would have been appreciated. They only exist for the supplemental featurette and the Italian text in the opening sequence (see below) of the feature.  

Severin have added a trailer and a half-hour featurette "Voices From the Black" with input from Dardanno Sachhetti, costume designer Massimo Lentini and editor Bruno Micheli. Those keen will enjoy.

The price might be a bit high for DVD tech value but fans of Giallo and Fulci will certainly find enough to be content. I found the film a quintessential representation of the genre with a masterful touch of subtleties. I'm no expert on Giallo but could appreciate this strong effort.   

Gary W. Tooze

 

 



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Distribution Severin - Region 1 - NTSC




 

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Gary Tooze

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