In this third and final segment of Kat and Samm’s series on obscure but stunning giallo films, they look at five of their favorite titles—nearly all of which involve a protagonist’s descent into madness—beginning with Francesco Barilli’s The Perfume of the Lady in Black (1974). Mimsy Farmer stars as a troubled scientist who begins to have flashbacks about her mother’s suicide and is alarmed to find her life quickly unraveling. In Umberto Lenzi’s Spasmo (1974), a man begins a relationship with a woman, saving her from attempted murder, only to realize that he may be in the middle of a deadly conspiracy meant to drive him mad.

Mimsy Farmer returns for Armando Crispino’s Autopsy (1975), where she stars as a pathology student writing a thesis on suicides. This just happens to coincide with a wave of them across Rome, though she believes that some of these are actually murders. The same year’s wonderfully eerie Footprints on the Moon follows another female protagonist (the great Florinda Balkan), who misses several days of work, but can’t remember what she did during that time, and the clues lead her to an isolated resort town. But there the residents confuse her with another woman. The series concludes with what is surely one of the most terrifying giallo films ever made, Pupi Avati’s House with the Laughing Windows (1976), which follows an art historian to a small town, where he is charged with restoring a grisly fresco in a church. He comes to be haunted by memories of the mad painter responsible for it and suspects that the man might still be alive…

Also be sure to check out the Nucleus Films’ Indiegogo campaign to restore Lady Frankenstein and Death Laid an Egg. Any little bit helps!

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