In addition to the usual reviews and comments you would find on a horror movie blog, this is also a document of the wonderfully vast horror movie section of the video store I worked at in my youth.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Cut The Jazz, Charlie!

This week's VHS was my big box copy of William Rose's The Girl In Room 2A.

After being recently released from prison (sorry “women's jail”) Margaret (Daniela Giordano) begins to suspect some strange is happening in her boarding house.

Much like my experience with Watch Me When I Kill, I quickly discovered that this movie was a giallo, and not the cheap American B-title I was expecting. I then adjusted my expectations accordingly, as I knew I was going to get a least three things. And I was right.

The first thing was a lovely leading lady in Giordano. The movie leaned on her a lot, and with good reason, as anytime she wasn't onscreen, the movie really started to drag. Once she gets settled in, she strikes up a romance with Jack (John Scanlon), whose sister was staying in 2A before Margaret. I suppose it's not unique, as many of the classic gialli featured a budding relationship between kills, but this one was playful enough as to not be cumbersome. Speaking of the death toll, it was remarkably light and usually involved people falling, or being thrown, off cliffs, sometimes even in cars that spontaneously exploded before they even hit bottom.

Daniela Giordano as Margaret in The Girl In Room 2A

William Rose was more known for directing soft-core porno films, and you can see flashes of it here. Based on the underlying lasciviousness, I get the sense he was restraining himself from going full-on S&M. Which brings me to the second thing - our masked killer. Although, I did feel the killer's outfit a was tad too flamboyant. It was like Rose saw Sergio Martino's Torso (released one year previous) and thought “yeah, I want that, but with more Satan!” Maybe losing the cape would have made it less comical.

The last thing was, of course, the score. I felt the music in the first half was stronger, as it did get a little bombastic during the climax. On the whole, there were bits and pieces that kept me interested throughout, but The Girl In Room 2A doesn't have the style or story to put it up there with the greats.

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