Saturday, June 16, 2012

BLOOD LINK (Alberto De Martino, 1982)
Dr Craig Mannings (Michael Moriarty) has recently been troubled by visions of himself murdering lonely women, which he attributes to the experimental therapy he's been under. In one such vision, he finds a clue that leads him to Hamburg, Germany, where his heretofore presumed dead siamese twin, Keith (Moriarty again), has taken residence. It's revealed that Craig has been seeing the murders through Keith's eyes (ala The Eyes of Laura Mars), and Keith through his just as often. Naturally, Keith seizes the opportunity to continue with his killing spree, now focusing on Craig's friends and framing him in the process. I wish I had an identical twin some days.
It's fairly easy to sum up Blood Link as a promising premise that's flatly executed. The mostly American cast takes away the Eurocheese feel from the proceedings, but the dialogue is long-winded and the performances feel forced at times. Oddly enough, I found Keith to be the most interesting character in the story, because he seemed the most dynamic, evil as he may be. Craig is a harder character to identify with, as he's weak and a bit slow on the uptake at times - and he screws around on his girlfriend, who ends up saving him in the end. In how many Italian thrillers of that period is the protagonist saved by his girlfriend? Can't think of too many.
Stylewise, Blood Link stands above it's ilk. The photography is lush and inventive, and makes good use of mirrored surfaces, disorienting compositions, and the ol' watery soft-focus lens. The moody, noirish lighting and beautiful, though forgettable Ennio Morricone soundtrack almost work with the general tedium of the film. Almost. It's still a dreadfully slow affair for a thriller, but not a bad film.

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