Terrore Giallo! – Perfume of the Lady in Black
$12 General Admission
** Screening as part of the series Terrore Giallo! Italian Thrillers as Anti-Kyriarchal Dream Agents **
Giallos are at their best when they hew more towards Alice in Wonderland than Agatha Christie and Perfume of the Lady in Black goes all the way down the rabbit hole. The strange world into which it travels is unmoored from the conventions of the giallo cinema, drawing on their preoccupations with labyrinthine dreams and conspiracies to interrogate the genre’s paralyzing fear of female sexual desire. Mimsy Farmer portrays Sylvia, a chemist who begins to suffer from strange visions. She sees a mysterious woman in black applying perfume in a mirror, strangers following her everywhere she goes, and a ghostly little girl who may be Sylvia herself as a child. You see, Sylvia stabbed her mother’s sexually abusive boyfriend to death long ago, and now her visions are driving her to madness and cleaver-murders. The other possibility, however, is that literally all of Sylvia’s friends are Satanists conspiring to cause her suicide. This is a remarkable film, weaving reality, fantasy and memory into an almost seamless cinematic fabric to dizzying and poetic effect.