Tenebre ★★½

Tenebre means darkness, but most of the violence in Tenebre happens outside or under bright electric lights. This is quite cool. There is some quite startling imagery in this Argento movie, most particularly the poster image, the face of Ania Pieroni (who is similarly destabilising in Inferno. There's a BFI interview with Argento where he's asked to define giallo and says something to the effect of 'giallo...it's a something...beautiful woman'), and a very unpleasant use of zoom towards the end. There is a nightmarish chase with a dog. However. Certain things do not work very well at all. Goblin's score is fun, but lacks the scary edge of Suspiria/Deep Red and isn't fun enough to get away with it, as their score for Phenomena is. The camerawork is occasionally virtuousic (as in the Lesbos scene) in a distracting and useless way. The film acknowledges giallo's inherent sexism, but does nothing much to rectify it. That sort of thing rarely sits well with me. And there's very little control of character, either via good writing (as The Bird with the Crystal Plumage), or imagery (as Suspiria). This allows for a twisty ending, but it's low impact because there's not much to care about. The pages of the author's giallo aren't yellow, they're white.