A clairvoyant woman, inspired by a vision, smashes open a section of wall in her husband’s home and finds a skeleton behind it. Along with her psychiatrist, she seeks to find the truth about who the person was and who put her there.
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Expecting a giallo I was surprised to see a literal variation on the women's gothic melodrama of decades prior (Rebecca, Jane Eyre) which only hint at the supernatural. Its plot may follow a formulaic procedure but so much of its pleasure lie in being guided by the impossibly beautiful O'Neill, in a new decadent outfit every scene, charging ahead competently. If it all turns fatalistic, well, men. 3.5
Strange that the only stupid scene of this film is the close-up of the face of Virginia's mother when she falls from the cliff. Stupid and gratuitous because the movie didn't need such a scene. The rest is a good variation on E.A. Poe's 'The Black Cat' with a great performance by Jennifer O'Neill. Recommended.
Far from a slasher, this film is a tremendous bundle of mystery and suspense. Virginia (the glorious Jennifer O'Neill) has a premonition via a vision of images spawning an investigation into past events, as well as the future. Beyond keeping you locked in suspense, Fulci successfully investigates the power of image association, how an image can trigger sensations, instincts, and always mutating memories. (4.5)
Without lapsing into spoilers, Fulci's suspenseful & unusually restrained giallo effectively plays with self-reflexive notions of perception & the subjective belief that images can change their meaning when divorced from an original context. The film as such becomes a psychological jigsaw puzzle, in which fragments of a narrative slowly take on a more terrifying definition as the true nature of events becomes clear.
For a Fulci flick, Seven Notes in Black is strangely subdued, and almost totally without his usual penchant for blood, gore, tits, and ass. But this works to its advantage; Seven Notes in Black is easily the maestro's most character-driven film, and the one that bucks his trend of really bad endings. Full Review: http://cinephiledreams.blogspot.com/2013/12/seven-notes-in-black-1977.html
Fulci tempers his more extreme tendencies for this sharply-crafted, supernaturally-tinged Hitchcockian thriller. Some of the twists have been borrowed from a few too many times to still be surprising, but it's loaded with style, atmosphere, and strong performances. Can't say it's my favorite Fulci, as many have, but an excellent giallo thriller for fans of the genre, and maybe a good introduction to the uninitiated.