Having the wrong idea about Fulci, as do many, might be the ideal vantage from which to come at DON'T TORTURE A DUCKLING, one of the greatest genre films of all time. You might be floored, I was. Hopping on the giallo-with-an-animal-in-the-title bandwagon for the second time, he delivers a hicksville variation, both social and emotional. Almost a frenzied admixture of Chabrol (especially LE BOUCHER) and Peckinpah.
Lucio Fulci did better giallos than pure horror movies as they went too much over-the-top and brutal in my eyes. This is an excellent who-dunnit that have several perverse murder suspects that can have killed children in a small Italian village. Acting is also good and it has a good revelation and use of a Donald Duck mask. Could this be the director's masterpiece worthy of praise even in art circles? I think so.
It really aged badly and I wonder what International fans could get out of horribly dubbed southern dialect, but, well, I started watching movies from other reason since I was younger. So I could not avoid loving the external locations, lying not too far from my place. I found funny enough Abruzzo and Puglia were used to fake a village in Basilicata.
One of Fulci's early-period misses. As it starts so well, but the middle drags with its many characters and too much repetition. The procedural element of the case also has too many red herrings and purposeless scenes. Despite the atmosphere building garnering diabolic unease, the pace picks up somewhat after the hour mark. The whipping scene would have been ghastlier, but the musical choice during it feels wrong.
One of the better gialli in the genre, Fulci's style and perverseness is seen all over. The pedophilic Bouchet and what I think is a main critique of the religious idea of hell and how to get there. The greatest scene has to be the chaining of the superstitious outcast, which is one of the most tragic that I've witnessed. Fulci is stronger on second viewings after they've settled.
Un giallo a tinte forti,per di più su un tema delicato come l'omicidio seriale dei bambini.L'utilizzo della collettività turbata è il cuore pulsante di questo film,in cui i molti personaggi che ruotano attorno alla vicenda accrescono da subito i sospetti.Grandioso l'apporto dato da Florinda Bolkan;la scena della flagellazione è magnifica. Fulci,come al solito,gira alla grande con due lire e sforna un vero cult.4*