I put this one off for as long as I could. It’s time to face the music and get it done. I really didn’t want to re-watch this one, but I finally bit the bullet. Horror isn’t really my genre (other than maybe the Halloween movies).
To be honest, Giallo wasn’t quite as bad as I remember, but it sure isn’t good.
Here we go…
Cast: Adrien Brody (in two roles), Emmanuelle Seigner, Elsa Pataky, Robert Miano, Valentina Izumi…
Written by: Jim Agnew, Sean Keller, Dario Argento
Directed by: Dario Argento
Genre: Horror, Thriller, Crime
Running Time: 1 hour, 32 minutes
Released: Horror film festivals in 2009 (U.K, Sweden, etc). Reached the U.S. in 2010. The release was delayed due to a lawsuit Adrien filed, because he wasn’t paid his agreed-upon salary. And yet, they were still using his name and image to promote. Not cool.
MPAA Rating: R
A taxi driver (Brody) in Torino, Italy is kidnapping young, conventionally attractive women. He’s a serial killer, so it doesn’t end well for most of them. He also photographs his victims, as if it’s a fashion shoot. He later, umm… uses the photos for… purposes. It is quite disturbing.
The sister (Seigner) of one missing woman (Pataky) happened to have come to town to visit her sister the day she disappeared. She teams up with an inspector (also Brody) who has lived in Italy, New York, and back to Italy. We learn why that is, but I won’t spoil it for you.
Adrien’s Role: Yellow/Giallo/Flavio
So, our killer, known as yellow (or giallo, in Italian) is played by an actor credited as Byron Deidra. That happens to be an anagram of Adrien Brody, and yep… it’s him. He looks like a cross between Bruce Springsteen and Rambo, but it’s Adrien.
They gave him lighter hair, very dark brown contact lenses (because the lovely shade of green would’ve been a dead giveaway), fake teeth, and a fake nose, to make it slightly less obvious. They even covered his iconic eyebrows.
However, there’s a scene fairly early on (about 25 minutes or so in) where you can totally tell it’s Adrien. He was wearing a hoodie, which I think was meant to hide his face… but it didn’t always do so.
I’m not sure if this was done intentionally, to make you wonder if the inspector is the killer for a while, but it’s really distracting.
We eventually learn Yellow’s name is actually Flavio. He has a liver disorder, and has since he was a child. He grew up in an orphanage, and was bullied relentlessly for his yellow skin.
His goal is to make the most beautiful people ugly. That’s pretty much his motivation.
Adrien… I love the man, but he was kind of ridiculous as Flavio. His accent was straight out of a Mario Bros. game. And supposedly scary dialogue was unintentionally funny. The rest wasn’t really his fault, like the weird makeup.
Adrien’s Role: Enzo Avolvi
Surprisingly, Adrien wasn’t as strong as usual as Enzo, either. I think it was because he could only do so much with what he was given. And because he was pulling double-duty.
He does… fine. There are just several awkward deliveries that are very unlike him. It’s odd. Maybe the director is ultimately to blame for that, I don’t know. Major fan or not, I have to admit Adrien fell a bit short, here.
The main reason Adrien became involved in this film is that his then-girlfriend, Elsa Pataky (yes, Chris Hemsworth’s wife) was cast in it first. He felt nervous about her doing the film, so he joined in to protect her, so to speak.
I guess that’s really all I have to say about it. I honestly can’t recommend this one, unless you’re on a quest to see everything he’s ever made. Like someone who runs a blog about his movies, for instance. 😉
Movie Overall: 3/10
Brody Performance: Flavio: 2, Enzo: 6, so… 4 average
I don’t think it was totally his fault, though. The movie is just awful.