The 1980s heralded in a new era for the giallo and Carlo Vanzina’s 1983 thriller, Mystère is indicative of a marked change in the Italian thriller during the decade of excess. Peter and Rachael take a look at how the cultural shift in the 1980s manifested in the stylings of Carlo Vanzina’s contemporary giallo, examining the film’s influences from Roger Moore era Bond to Jean-Jacques Beineix ’s 1981 thriller, Diva. In their discussion of Mystère, they examine the film’s tonal shift from giallo to espionage thriller, its depiction of prostitution, 1980s yuppified glamour and Carole Bouquet’s enigmatic performance as the morally ambiguous Mystère:

I haven’t got much to add to this one, for the simple fact I’ve never seen it – and it seems pretty difficult to get an English-language (or subtitled) version.

But if it’s good enough for Rachael and Peter it must have something going for it, and in the shape of For Your Eyes Only’s Carole Bouquet it certainly has an eye-catching lead.

Here’s the synopsis:

Assassins are after a prostitute who has come into possession of a cigarette lighter that, unbeknownst to her, contains the negatives that show a politician’s assassination.

And here’s a trailer of sorts…

About The Author

Simon Fitzjohn

Simon is a journalism tutor in London, who also just happens to be a movie fanatic, with a craving for the darker side of cinema. He has written three books - on the horror films of director Bob Clark (2014), the history of the character Norman Bates (2015) and the work of British exploitation director Pete Walker (2017). He is currently working with director Richard Loncraine to explore all avenues in a bid to orchestrate the re-release of 1978 Mia Farrow chiller Full Circle