Thursday, October 14, 2010


(Gianni Martucci, 1980)
This backwoods giallo obscurity was never released in English, and probably never will be. It's a little slow and predictable, but entertaining nonetheless.
Trhauma opens on two young boys, one of whom dares the other to climb a tree. Upon doing so, the boy falls from the tree and is chastised by the other. End prologue. Did I miss something there? In the average giallo, the traumatic occurrence at the start sets the tone and provides a clue as to the killers motive. I discovered about 10 minutes later that it did explain the killer's motive, and I had most of it already figured out. I then thanked God and Vishnu for the disco soundtrack, as it was going to be a while before the end. Anyway, back to the story...
Many years later, the injured boy has grown into a psychotic man and lives in a basement or store room. We know he is psychotic as he plays with Lego, kills animals, and has sex with dead human bodies. For reasons later divulged, he begins to stalk and kill the friends and owners of an isolated villa in the woods. This being a giallo, we know the stalker can't possibly be working alone...
Made at the bitter end of the giallo boom, Trhauma lacks the inventiveness and originality that come with the genre. Like Murder Obsession and Tenebre, Trhauma was obviously influenced by the American slasher movie, though it lacks most of the requisite gore. Martucci's uninspired direction and languid pacing make the film drag at times, though this is offset by occasional scenes of nudity, sleaze, and misogyny. The story contains no fresh ideas, and is a mishmash of the usual giallo themes of murder, inheritance, blackmail, etc.
The only pluses I give Trhauma are for the effective use of light and shadow, the bizarre shot compositions, the disco-matic synthesizer score, and the downer ending. Oh, and all the green. I can't say I've seen a giallo with more emphasis on green than yellow! I'd not recommend this to horror fans, though giallo freaks like myself (and YOU! and YOU!)could likely make it through the first (and only) time. It's not on DVD or BluRay as of yet, so happy downloading!

1 comment:

  1. I like 80s slashers but this one was a bit boring, and not a competent giallo either, like you I enjoyed the disco music, not to mention all that late 70s "look".