Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Bad Inclination (Pierfrancesco Campanella, 2003)

Don't you just hate it when you're trying to make out with your new girlfriend–on, where else, your orange avante garde sofa–and your pet kitty cat won't stop staring at you? I can't speak for you, or even you–yeah, you, the guy jacking it on the fire escape in nothing but a slightly charred  pair of teal oven mitts, or I should say, teal oven mitt–but there's nothing creepier than pets who like to watch when you engage in lustful activities. Nothing creepier, eh? You have obviously never been stabbed to death by an attractive Italian woman wielding a large set square. I'm going to have to respectively disagree. Watching a cat mimic my pelvic thrusts out of the corner of my eye like it was sitting centre court at a tennis match is creepy. Being stabbed by an attractive Italian woman, on the other hand, is a dream come true. Add the fact that she is wielding, what did you say she was wielding? A what? A set square?!? Good gravy, don't people stab one another with knives anymore? Anyway, add the fact that she was wielding something you might find lying around the offices of your average architectural firm only makes matters that more dreamier. Now, I don't want to cause you to lose too much of your metaphorical shit, but I'm about to add something to the mix that might provoke you to engage in some mild celebratory gesticulation followed by a pre-planned joy-based conniption fit. The attractive Italian woman wielding the set square was born with a cock. Hello? Are you still there? Oh, hey. I'm sorry, I must have passed out or something. Did you just say there's a giallo floating around out there that boasts an attractive Italian transgender woman wielding a set square as a weapon? Why haven't I watched this movie? Oh, but you have. I have? When? Take a look at the title of the movie your currently typing words about. You mean, Bad Inclination, a.k.a. Cattive Inclinazioni? Remember the look on Chazz Palminteri's face when he realizes who Keyser Söze is in The Usual Suspects? Well, that's the look I'm currently sporting at the moment.

Except, instead of feeling royally duped. I'm rolling around on the floor like a giddy school girl who just found out that Jonathan Taylor Thomas is going to be signing autographs at the mall this weekend. After the film, a stylish ode to the Italian giallo thrillers of days gone past directed by Pierfrancesco Campanella, had finished, I was already meticulously planning a lavishly verbose tribute to Eva Robin's's Nicole Cardente, a pop star; fashion-forward lesbian; a walking, talking fabulous dispensary; and camp icon all rolled into one. Let's just say, my plans went into overdrive when I finished reading Eva Robin's's bio.

In a bizarre twist of fate, I initially had this almost sane scenario bouncing around in my head that involved me wishing that the gorgeous/leggy Elisabetta Cavalotti had a cock.

Who needs to fantasize about being penetrated by Elisabetta Cavalotti's imaginary cock, when I can have Eva Robin's's real cock resting in my hands lickety-split. Am I right, fellas? Fellas? Where are you going?

Anyway, don't let Gianna Paola Scaffidi's beige blouse and equally beige curtains lull you into thinking you're about to watch a drab melodrama about a school teacher with womanly hips. Uh-uh, baby, this film has something to say. And it does so in a highly intelligent manner. Okay, maybe that's pushing it a bit. Nonetheless, the film is good. In fact, I'd go as far as to call it, Creatures from the Abyss good. Whoa, is it that good? You better believe it is.

Keep your panties affixed to your undercarriage, I'm gonna get to Eva Robin's in a minute. What I'm doing right now is laying the groundwork. At any rate, as I was saying earlier, Gianna Paola Scaffidi is wearing a beige blouse in her Italian apartment, when, out of the blue, a gloved hand knocks her unconscious with a karate chop to the head; which is ironic since she had just finished chopping veggies in her Italian kitchen. Waking up on the floor of her living room, she can't help but notice that the mysterious gloved figure is currently investigating her garter belt region with a series of invasive groping actions. Somewhat relieved that the mysterious gloved figure only wants to inspect her lingerie, Gianna seems to relax for a moment. Unfortunately, the lingerie inspection turns deadly when the mysterious gloved figure stabs her with a set square in the area located just above her frilly garter belt.

Except for being brunette, Detective Rita (Mirca Viola) has nothing really going for her in terms of pizazz. Which is a shame, really, as I thought her struggle to work within a system that is run by a bunch of incompetent boobs–I'm looking in your general direction, Chief Visconti (Antonio Petrocelli)–was on the cusp of being interesting.

The other tenants of the building where Gianna was murdered are obviously on edge. Well, all except Mirta Valenti (Florinda Bolkan), an artist who is dressed in the kind of clothes a fortune teller might wear on their day off. You mean, fortune teller casual? Yeah, I like that. The way her red embroidered vest offset the harshness of her yellow shirt was quite ingenious. She looked like a giant canary, one, of course, that had just been run over by a gay tractor.

The reason she doesn't seem bothered by what happened in her building is because she sees the murder as an opportunity to promote her artwork, which, judging from what I've seen so far, is quite morbid in nature. And not only that, she sells fake artifacts to naive collectors; which upsets Gabriella (Rosaria De Cicco), Mirta's live-in maid; or at least I think she was her maid. Whatever, take special note of Gabriella when she's dipping into the cooking cherry, as I'm sure it will pay off later on down the road.

While collecting a suitcase filled with cash for the fake artifacts she sold earlier in the day, Mirta catches one of her former students (she apparently used to teach an art class) trying to steal a bunch of stuff from her mini-van. Telling Mirta that she needs the money, Donatella (Elisabetta Rocchetti) has supposedly had it rough since they last met. While appearing sympathetic, you just know that Mirta is thinking of ways to exploit the wide-eyed wretch, who, like, Detective Rita, has got nothing going on in the pizazz department.

You know who does have pizazz? (Please say, Eva Robin's.) The gorgeous/leggy Elisabetta Cavallotti, a slinky drink of confident water who walks with the swagger of a young milf. Approaching the now infamous apartment (it's all over the trashy tabloid television talk shows) with the aforementioned swagger I just alluded to, Elisabetta, who plays Otilia, bumps into Premio (Guido Berti), a handsome new tenant. I'm no body language expert, but it's obvious that Otilia and Premio have the hots for one another.

After she's finished flirting with Premio, Otilia enters the apartment. What does she find when she gets inside? No, not another woman who was stabbed with a set square, but one of the most beautiful women on the planet. Don't you mean one of the most beautiful women in the greater Rome area? Uh-uh, I'm talking about the entire planet. Lying on her bed in a corset, Nicole Cardente (Eva Robin's) is Otilia's "friend." Oh, wait, they just shared a passionate kiss. In other words, they're more than just friends. Judging by their conversation, Otilia is helping plan Nicole's comeback. You see, Nicole, on top of being my new style hero, is a pop star who's career could use a firm kick in the underpants.

While Otilia plans Nicole's comeback, Mirta is already well on her way to exploiting the murder that occurred in her apartment. Painting a picture of a naked woman with a set square through her neck, Mirta is hoping her proximity to the murder scene will increase the value of her art. If you thought Mirta was going to limit her exploitation to the art world, think again. She's got murder on her mind, and plans to use Donatella as her weapon. Of course, all she needs to do now is head down to the set square store to pick up set square and  she should be good to go.

Quick question, won't the police being monitoring all purchases of set squares that take place at the set square store? You would think so. But you have got to remember, the police in Bad Inclination are idiots.

Meanwhile, over dinner, Otilia and Nicole start to hatch their own plan to exploit the set square murder. Only problem being, Otilia has a thing for Primio. And Nicole, judging by the size of her hair and her demented disposition, doesn't look like the type of person to let something like this slide.

It's doesn't matter, 'cause in the next scene, Primio is demanding that Otilia dig her heels into his hairy Italian calves. Ooh, baby, pierce those hairy calves, you leggy vixen. Pierce them with your heels!

Even though she doesn't know about the calve piercing incident, you can tell Nicole thinks something is fishy when she spots Primio crouching next to his motorcycle.

Whether walking her cat in pink pantyhose or relaxing with her cat in taupe pantyhose, Eva Robin's is camp personified in this movie. Playing a high maintenance pop singer, lesbian murderess, Eva Robin's injects the proceedings with the correct amount of crazy.

You would think that a movie filled with so many duplicitous characters, that it would be hard to find someone to root for. Well, I don't care what anyone says, I was rooting for Eva Robin's's Nicole. Besides, if you found out that your leggy girlfriend was having an affair with a man with hairy calves, wouldn't you want to murder her with a set square and then try to pin it on said man with hairy calves? If you said yes, you're obviously my kind of people. If you said no, well, it's clear your taste in fashion-forward chicks with dicks is not as impeccable as I thought it was.

A parody of our murder as entertainment-obsessed society (and by "our," I mean the nation of Italy), Bad Inclination is a smart giallo that will definitely appeal to fans of Faceless and Strip Nude for Your Killer. And, yes, I realize that this film is best known in some circles for being the one Franco Nero briefly appears in as a "vagrant." But if I'm watching a movie that features Eva Robin's and Franco Nero, the former will always receive the bulk of my attention, it's just the way I was raised.

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  1. Great review!

    Having read this review of Bad Inclination, and Tenebrous Kate's, and now very curious about Bad Inclination!

  2. Hi. Sorry for this to be a question unrelated to Bad Inclination. Do you know how long the 1989 Dr Caligari film is? After failing to find the film on ebay, I saw that it's on youtube, but at 78 minutes long, while wikipedia, imdb, google, etc al say that its 80 minutes long.

    Also, what gender are you? (I hope that question doesn't make me sound like a creeper)

  3. @Chris Hewson: Thanks.

    If I recall correctly, Kate no likey Bad Inclination. :D

    @jane1999: Dr. Caligari is 78 mins (from the opening credits to the end of the closing credits).

    The Excalibur Films DVD includes a two minute intro thing, so, that might account for the extra two minutes.

  4. Eva Robin's must really hate copyeditors to spell her name that way.

    "Eva Robin's's legs look excellent in opaque pantyhose."

  5. "Eva Robin's's legs look excellent in opaque pantyhose."

    I agree wholeheartedly. :D

  6. Woah.

    I'm surprised you made it through this one and are still functioning.

  7. I'll admit, my head exploded a couple of times.