Splatter Time Fun Fest 2014: Cosa avete fatto a Solange? (What Have You Done to Solange?, 1972)

what have you done to solange

I haven’t done anything with anyone named Solange, okay!

Screenplay By: Massimo Dallamano, Bruno Di Geronimo, & Peter M. Thouet
Directed By: Massimo Dallamano

A reveal can damage a movie, and that’s exactly what happens in Cosa avete fatto a Solange?. The reveal that takes place in this movie caused me to think back about everything I had previously seen and how truly meaningless it became because of said reveal. I felt like much of my time had been wasted, as this film put forth the idea that all the set up in the world doesn’t matter when an ending can be pulled out of thin air. I know there are some who will say that such an ending, or reveal, is emblematic of Giallo. I respectfully disagree, as in the best Gialli there are kernels left that lead to the big reveal making sense. That’s not the approach to the reveal in Cosa avete fatto a Solange?, it’s more of an attempt at pulling the rug out from under the audiences feet than anything else.

I did quite enjoy the score in Cosa avete fatto a Solange?. That’s not surprising since the score is supplied by Ennio Morricone. He hits all the right beats in Cosa avete fatto a Solange?, and he provides a main beat that is catchy and adds energy to the film. Every time the main beat would kick in I would get very interested in what was happening on the screen. It’s not among his best works, but Signore Morricone does quality work with his score for Cosa avete fatto a Solange?.

I wish I could give the film kudos for some inventive kills. Unfortunately due to the controversial nature of the kills we don’t ever actually see them. Actually, that’s not true, we do see them after the fact, in photographs and x-rays. The decision to show the kills in that manner really dulls their effect. They are no longer inventive, or cool looking, they are matter of fact events that happened off screen. That’s a shame too, because the idea behind the kills in Cosa avete fatto a Solange? is original and would have made for some violently disturbing cinema.

A major problem with Cosa avete fatto a Solange? is the films length. It’s only an hour and forty five minutes, but it could have stood to have a good fifteen minutes shaved off of that run time. After a character we’ve been following much of the movie bites the dust, that’s when the over-length seeps into the film. A few scenes take on the role of filler, and much of the momentum of the film is stalled as Massimo Dallamano turns his film in circles trying to figure out how to progress towards the ending.

In recent years Cosa avete fatto a Solange? has taken on a reputation as one of the best Gialli from the 1970s. I don’t see it folks, and I really wish that I could see a great Gialli in Cosa avete fatto a Solange?. Certain elements are in place for a great Gialli, and a great film period. Those elements are never put together to make a whole film that earns its reveal. When the feeling a reveal leaves is that everything that has come before is meaningless, that’s not a well executed reveal. Cosa avete fatto a Solange? isn’t one of the best Gialli of the 1970s, it’s a badly missed opportunity in the Giallo subgenre.

Rating:

**1/2

Cheers,
Bill Thompson

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