“I thought I was cured… But instead, it’s getting worse!”
The opportunistic owner (Yvonne Furneaux) of a champagne factory enlists the help of her husband (Anthony Perkins) in convincing her mentally unstable business partner (Maurice Ronet) to sell the rights to his famous last name. Soon a mysterious rash of murders occurs, with Ronet the prime suspect.
Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:
- Anthony Perkins Films
- Claude Chabrol Films
- French Films
- Mental Illness
- Murder Mystery
This mess of a murder mystery by French director Claude Chabrol aspires towards Hitchcockian thrills, but comes across as a lame, ineffectual satire instead. The acting by everyone involved is either over-the-top (Furneaux, Ronet):
… and/or cliched (Perkins):
None of the characters are likeable; and the script makes no sense from beginning to end. Although the final resolution of “whodunit” comes as a surprise, this can’t make up for the remainder of the insipid story, which is eminently unwatchable. A major disappointment.
Redeeming Qualities and Moments:
- Fine cinematography and sets
No. While it’s inexplicably listed as a Personal Recommendation in the back of Peary’s book, this is a disappointing entry in Chabrol’s oeuvre, and definitely not must-see viewing.