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Shaun vs. You’ll Die at Midnight aka Midnight Killer (1986)

midnight1 Directed by Lamberto Bava

Starring Valeria D’Obici, Paolo Malco and Lara Wendel

A man is killed trying to prove his innocence of murdering his wife who was a victim of a masked serial killer.  A friend of his, and criminal psychologist, gets some of her students to help with the case but winds up putting them in the path of a deranged maniac.



Definitely not the best from Bava.

The film starts with Nicola finding out his wife is cheating on him while sneaking up on her in the lingerie shop.  He violently confronts her at their apartment but takes off before doing any more harm.  Unfortunately, there is someone nearby willing to do harm and a masked killer makes their way into the apartment and gets stabby.  Nicola runs into Anna, an old friend and criminal psychologist, who wants to help prove his innocence.   It gets weird later on when an undercover police officer shoots Nicola dead when he was trying to kill Anna, who still maintains his innocence.  Aroo?

midnight4

I see you!

Anna is well known for a thesis she wrote on a serial killer years ago named Franco Tribbo.  Just think of her as Clarice Starling to his Hannibal Lecter, only more rapey and less cannibalistic.  She gathers up a few of her students to work on the case and prove who the real killer is, filling their heads with the possibility that this Tribbo fellow is out on the loose though the police officer Anna works with is pretty sure Tribbo is dead, though he doesn’t do away with the notion that there’s a copycat.  As the students try to piece the mystery together, Tribbo or someone like Tribbo, starts stalking and killing the students and it’s not until the final moments that everything makes sense.  And by “make sense” I mean in the most absurdly convoluted way.

midnight3

Psycho this is not.

I normally don’t mind how silly and convoluted giallos can be; I can plant tongue firmly in cheek to enjoy a decent murder mystery with a few buckets of blood thrown around for good measure (ie: Eyeball) and call it a day.  Midnight Killer would almost have me stick my tongue all the way through my cheek in order to really enjoy the film because it falters in so many ways.  The story is generic slasher fare, filled with awful, uneven dialogue that changes in tone from being serious to ludicrous all in one conversation.  Even some of the scenarios are downright stupid; who is going to defend themselves with a mixer?  One stupid victim, that’s who.

midnight2

So…so stupid.

A giallo from Lamberto Bava should not be this weak.  Going in blindly, even with my tempered expectations, the film was ultimately a disappointment on all fronts.

TL;DR

Story: 3 – A story so generic and bad I had to watch it twice to understand!  Generic and stupid.

Blood: 5 – It has it’s moments but it’s a let down when you see the name “Bava” on the box cover.

Nudity: 0 – Nothing!?

Overall: 3 – Disappointing all around.  Definitely not what I was expecting and not worth the trouble to find.

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