FIFTH CORD (Blue
Underground) 1971. 93 Minutes. Giallo film. Not Rated. An alcoholic
reporter (Franco Nero) is intrigued by a series of murders of four trendy
socialites. He keeps on the trail determined to discover the motive behind
the killings. However, the
closer he gets the more obvious it becomes he may become the fifth victim.
Fifth Cord is a magnificent example of twisted Giallo. From
cinematographer Vittorio Storaro’s (Apocalypse
Now) amazing and lush camerawork to a haunting score by master Ennio
Morricone, this is a fantastic film. The
use of a distorted fish eye lens giving us a killer’s point of view is
genius, lending itself to the insanity of the killer. And as for the
motive behind the killings? As is true Giallo fashion, you really won’t
believe it until it’s revealed at the end. Franco plays his drunken
alcoholic reporter to perfection, chewing up the screen in pursuit of
clues that will lead him to the killer. An interesting fact that makes the
film more creepy than usual is the total lack of music when the killer
strikes; a bizarre directorial choice considering who is doing the music.
The gore is non-existent, but the murder set pieces still play well.
Truly, the only reasons to watch this film are for the dizzying
camerawork and Nero’s performance. Blue
Underground has once again done a great service for true fans of the
Giallo genre. In addition to the film, there is an interview with Vittorio
Storaro and Franco Nero that is required viewing. -Douglas A. Waltz