Twitch of the Death Nerve / Last House on the Left, Part II, The (1971)

Twitch of the Death Nerve / Last House on the Left, Part II, The (1971)

“If you kill for killing’s sake, you become a monster.”

On a beautiful bay-front property, a wheelchair-bound woman (Isa Miranda) is killed by her husband (Giovanni Nuvoletti), who is promptly murdered by a mysterious assailant. We soon learn that a local real estate agent (Chris Avran) and his lover (Anna Maria Rosati) had plotted with Nuvoletti to kill his wife; meanwhile, a quartet of teenagers come to explore the bay and are killed by Miranda’s illegitimate son (Claudio Camaso), who has been scheming with Avram to sign over the bay to them but is foiled when Nuvoletti’s daughter (Claudine Auger) arrives with her husband (Luigi Pistilli), and their own desire for the property complicates the bloody situation even further — including involving a local entomologist (Leopoldo Trieste) and his tarot card-reading wife (Laura Betti).

Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:

  • Horror Films
  • Mario Bava Films
  • Serial Killers

Mario Bava’s stylish horror film is notable for the being a direct forerunner of “summer slasher flick” Friday the 13th (1980) — especially given the inclusion of an otherwise random subplot about a group of young adults frolicking on the property:

who are done away with one by one (or, in an infamous shot, two at once):

Twitch of the Last Death Nerve — also known as A Bay of Blood and The Last House on the Left, Part II (!!) — is filled not only with LOTS of gore but plenty of kooky, mysterious, and/or sinister characters:

… who may or may not be responsible for the spate of bloody killings that won’t stop taking place. Favorite random line: “You are full of hot dogs and cadillacs, and you have no music in your soul.”

Redeeming Qualities and Moments:

  • Atmospheric cinematography

Must See?
No, though clearly horror film enthusiasts would disagree with me. Listed as a Cult Movie and a Personal Recommendation in the back of Peary’s book.


3 thoughts on “Twitch of the Death Nerve / Last House on the Left, Part II, The (1971)

  1. Not must-see.

    Saw this once many years ago. Only for Bava fans (which I’m certainly not).

  2. ⭐️⭐️⭐️ out of ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

    A solid, blackly comic Italian giallo and well worth a look for fans of European horror and genre cinema in general but it’s not an essential film and therefore not must see.

    As a key Bava film it’s a must for fans of his work and for students of horror cinema it’s a must for its influence on the slasher genre.

  3. Saw it last night for the first time and for anybody interested in Horror, Slasher, Thriller this is definitely a must see – if you don’t like like anything related to Slasher then even this one will be a waste of time.

    Very much a film of the Seventies with continuous jump cuts, moody photography, groovy interiors and a pronounced soundtrack (which I love) this film continues to surprise as the bodies pile up. A big difference with the later 80s slasher movies is that the killers don’t possess supernatural powers, all murders could have been committed by you or me.
    I don’t think this film is a typical Giallo, the tempo is too high, the killers are fairly obvious and killers are killed almost straight away afterwards.

    At the end all you can do is laugh out loudly as it all does seem like a big joke. Highly recommended.

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