Movie Review: Last Shark (1981)

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The Last Shark (1981)
Directed by Enzo G. Castellari
Starring James Franciscus, Vic Morrow, Joshua Sinclair, Giancarlo Prete, Stefania Girolami Goodwin, Gian Marco Lari, Chuck Kaufman, Gail Moore, Joyce Lee

It was not uncommon for a foreign film studio to make their own version of a popular US film. I’m not talking remakes, mind you, since that would imply buying the rights for it. I’m just talking on using the same ideas, storyline, or theme, but changing them enough to make it their own. Just look at when William Friedkin’s The Exorcist came out … there were tons of rip-offs … sorry, films made that were “inspired by” just in Italy alone. Now this wasn’t a bad thing, and we’re not complaining, since we love a lot of those … variations. But when a new film called Great White hit the US shores in March of 1982, Universal Pictures filed a lawsuit against the producers of the film, stating that it was too similar to their film Jaws and Jaws 2. After only a month on the screen, it was pulled. Of course, that didn’t stop the producers from making a reported $18 million for that single month. Not too bad for a rip-off, huh?

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Movie Review: Cat O’ Nine Tails

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The Cat o’ Nine Tails (1971)
Directed Dario Argento
Starring James Franciscus, Karl Malden, Catherine Spaak, Pier Paolo Capponi, Horst Frank, Tino Carraro, Rada Rassimov, Aldo Reggiani, Carlo Alighiero

This has always been my favorite of Argento’s Animal Trilogy. Even though the reveal at the end of the film doesn’t have the big “It’s You!” payoff that a good thriller might have, this is a giallo after all so it comes down to many other things. But having a blind puzzle maker as one of the main protagonists is something that I’ve always thought was a cool idea, and Malden does an excellent job here.

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