The House of the Laughing Windows ★★★★

A mostly excellent slow burn giallo film that is seriously among the creepiest, weirdest and most disturbing in the genre. This movie avoids the typical genre trappings such as as black glowed killers, numerous kills and gratuitous nudity for a more subdued and quiet form of dread. Although the rare moments when violence does happen it is still often brutal and gut wrenching.

The film also swaps the usual urban setting for a more rural one which makes for some eye catching set pieces particularly the titular house and it's creepy painted smiling windows. It also features a cast of odd ball and creepy characters which makes everyone a suspect, even the love interest is a little bit weird. Although the male lead is a bit bland hampered by a pretty lackluster performance.

Now to get to the one thing that almost everyone who knows about this film finds most memorable which is the twist. Without spoiling much I wil have to say I had mixed feelings about it. Yes, it was shocking and well executed but I couldn't help it but find it a bit..."problematic" if you catch my drift. Like as much I was shocked by it, I couldn't help but think really? This again? I know giallo films aren't exactly known for their progressive politics and I know that it's an older movie and yada yada yada but regardless, we should still be critical of the messages in media, even in films from less progressive time periods and genres.

But, honestly I still couldn't help but find myself enjoying the hell out of this movie, it's creepy, it's weird, it's fucked up and it's just a great little murder mystery in spite of it's flaws and I still recommend it to pretty much any fan of gialli as it's one of the better films in the genre.

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