Reviewed by: Ryan Doom
What's it about
An American psychic finds her husband accused of a crime in Italy and through her visions, she must prove his innocence.
Is it good movie?
Thereís something about thrillers that focus on psychics. The ability to watch a character unfold a mystery and discover clues simply by touching something or walking into a room might seem like cheating to the average detective fan. However, I offer a defense. Well, an excuse at least. Psychics, especially in films like The Dead Zone, and in this specific case Lucio Fulciís The Psychic aka The Seven Notes in Black, are never believed. On every occasion when they make a bold claim and attempt to explain how they came about solving a ten-year-old murder, no one believes them. And who the hell would? ďI walked into this room, touched that lamp, and had a vision.Ē Surrrre. In a way though, that allows the psychic to uncover clues traditional detective style in order to prove that they arenít nuts. The Psychic doesnít stray from this formula as it concerns an American designer named Virginia Ducci (Jennifer OíNeill) who travels to Italy with her husband only to see him accused of a crime. At the same time, she keeps having reoccurring visions of someone being walled up alive, a yellow cigarette and a man with a limp. And it just so happened the crime occurred in her husbandís home. He is arrested and, along with the help of her shrink, they must prove his innocence.
Itís funny when thought about. Why do psychics only see horrid things? Why never something positive like someone strolling on the beach or finding that lost remote? Regardless, Fulci sets up the mystery decently well as The Psychic has good Italian locations, good acting and even good dubbing, something most foreign films canít claim. Fulci, most known for his gory epic Zombie, has some pretty bloody scenes in here considering itís 1977 and not even a horror flick. My favorite aspect screams 70ís. Each time Ducci has a vision, the camera zooms in, cueing the scary music meaning, THIS IS IMPORTANT. An effect makes one grin after the tenth time it happens without taking away from its impact. Nevertheless, I found The Psychic mostly entertaining, but far from a classic. Parts slow to halt and it suffered at times from the mystery not being all that interesting. Overall, itís a decent flick to have a rum and coke with and relax.
Video / Audio
Video: A little grainy, but still looks good in 1.85:1 widescreen.
Audio: Dolby Digital and Mono.
Voices from the Black: 27 minutes worth of audio interviews with co-writer Dardano Sacchetti, costume designer Massimo Lentini and editor Bruno Micheli played over a constant loop of scenes from the film. Good insights from different viewpoints. Just be prepared to read subtitles.
Donít watch The Psychic expecting all out Fulci gore or horror, but itís a good little thriller that reminded a lot of an early Brian De Palma. Worth a look and some booze.