#FridayNightAtTheHomeDriveIn……………… Plot of Fear Plot of Fear Plot of Fear Plot of Plot of Fear (1976) by #PaoloCavara
A group of wealthy men and women get murdered one by one at a decadent weekend party full of orgies and drugs on the outskirts of Milan.
I had never heard of Plot of Fear (1976) prior to picking up a copy on DVD sometime earlier this year. It was on sale and, looking at the box, I found it irresistible. The description on the back begins “Plot of Fear tells the story of a group of wealthy men and women who get murdered one by one at a decadent weekend party…”. Well, say no more – I’m sold.
It turns out that this description is a little wrong. The men and women are not murdered AT the party. They are murdered sometime AFTER the party – and we don’t even know about the party at first. It’s the thing that ties them all together and provides a motive for the murders.
Plot of Fear is a giallo. I’ve talked about the genre before, and how it has become one of my favourites. This one, starring Corinne Cléry from The Story of O (1975) and Moonraker (1979), features a heavy dose of sleaze including hookers, S&M, and the promised “decadent weekend party”.
The film even includes a pornographic cartoon made by Gibba, who was an Italian animator (full name Francesco Maurizio Guido) who did several erotic animated films in the 1970s and 1980s.
Tom Skerritt appears in Plot of Fear as a Chief Inspector of the police. I thought for a minute that he was only going to make a brief cameo in one scene, but his appearances are actually peppered throughout the entire movie.
Eli Wallach also appears as Peter Struwwel, a private detective with some questionable techniques and morals – and his character is even more prominent than Skerritt’s.
Michele Placido is the real hero of the movie. He has 130 credits on the IMDb, and may be recognizable from movies such as The Pyjama Girl Case (1977), Kleinhoff Hotel (1977), The Sicilian Connection (1985). and Big Business (1988) with Bette Midler and Lily Tomlin. In Plot of Fear, Pladico plays a police detective trying to solve a series of bizarre murders (as could only be found in a giallo – or maybe a slasher film).
Plot of Fear is probably not the greatest giallo ever made, but it’s pretty darn entertaining – especially for those who appreciate a higher than average sleaze factor. It manages to keep you guessing as to what the hell is going on – and who is behind the murders. And it is certainly no carbon copy of every other giallo that came before it.
The director, Paolo Cavara, is probably best known for making Mondo Cane (1962) and other pseudo-documentaries that expose strange behaviour from around the world, like Women of the World (1963), Malamondo (1964) and L’occhio selvaggio (1967). Plot of Fear is a drama that exposes the strange and shocking behaviours of a group of rich elite people in Milan, so it’s kind of like Mondo film in a way.
Plot of Fear (1976) is #NotQuiteClassicCinema that should appeal to fans of unusual giallos and other Italian exploitation films. It could certainly add a little spice to any cinematic line-up that seems a little too chaste for a #FridayNightAtTheHomeDriveIn.
Plot of Fear (1976) by #PaoloCavara
— Angus Kohm (@AngusKohm) November 27, 2021