Giornata Nera Per L'Ariete (aka The Fifth Cord) (1971)
A serial killer is on the loose in Rome (though one of his victims survives the attack) but there's a connection to all the victims: a journalist (Franco Nero) knew all of them. So naturally he becomes a chief suspect. So it's a race against time for the journalist to find the killer's identity as the killer's next victim may hit closer to home. On its own, this is a well done example of the Italian giallo but what elevates it to another plateau is the great Vittorio Storaro's (LAST TANGO IN PARIS) stunning cinematography. This may well be the best shot giallo ever made. So superb that it's sometimes distracting as you're in awe of the compositions and lighting instead of concentrating on the narrative. But it's stylish and atmospheric rather than bloody though a tasteful giallo might seem a contradiction. Contemporary gay sensibilities might be somewhat disturbed by the killer's motives however. Directed by Luigi Bazzoni with a typical Ennio Morricone score. With Pamela Tiffin, Edmund Purdom, Agostina Belli, Rossella Falk, Wolfgang Preiss, Ira von Furstenberg and Silvia Monti.