Do You Like Hitchcock? (2005)
Director: Dario Argento
Film student and Peeping Tom since he was a wee twerp Giulio (Germano) loves Hitchcock films, is a dick with his girlfriend, peeps on the nude hottie across the street from him and becomes obsessed with a murder that happens there. His investigation into the crime (Get a life bro!) will lead him…somewhere…yeah that’s it…somewhere. Question is…do I care?
What happened to the Dario Argento I knew, worshipped and loved! You know the master of puppets who was pulling our strings, twisting our minds and smashing our dreams? Miserably after
The Stendthal Syndrome Argento lost his mojo, only half regaining it with the so-so I Can’t Sleep and The Card Player. With his latest piece of work,
Do You Like Hitchcock?, a Made for TV movie, he loses most of his testies
once again. What’s going D.A.? Talk to me broseph!
I will admit that Do You Like Hitchcock was somewhat engaging due to a sly premise, an even pace, Frederic Fasano’s stylish cinematography and at least one suspense bit which had me by the lapel (the Moppet in the rain sequence). In addition, the story’s nature gave way to a fun game of
“Spot the Hitchcock narrative/visual references” (Mostly from Strangers on a Train, Vertigo and Rear Window). So that kept me busy. When that game wasn’t on; I’d play spot the varied Argento winks on Argento. We get scenes reminiscent
of his past films (Deep Red, Bird with the Crystal Plumage) in terms of setting and staging and we get simpler nods such as
The Card Player poster, the Scarlet Diva box…what not. And when I got tired of that stuff, I entertained myself with “salivate” at the countless nude Italian female dish, which were on display like a line of new and well-varnished furniture on screen. Nice babes in this Zoo, thanks Argent!
Unfortunately the rest was mess! First off the slick concept behind the story was never taken to its full potential. The idea of somebody using Hitchcock movies to get away with murder is a mucho good one; you just wouldn’t know it by watching this movie. Then we’re tagged to an a-hole geek lead that not only happens to have a drop dead gorgeous girlfriend (Yeah right!), but he treated her like garbage at that. Right there my sympathy vote went to the killer in a snap of the collar. The absence of visceral murders on this plate hurt me as well. Is this an Argento flick or a
Meredith Baxter Birney yarn sale? Apart from one bludgeoning we got…you ready… you’re strapped into your chair with barbwire? We
Furthermore Argento’s staple visual style was mostly absent from this one. Kool POV shots, occasional eerie mood and some slick red lighting aside, anybody could’ve directed this! Felt like a flunking film student emulating Argento…not Argento himself! It didn’t fare any better in terms of the screenplay (When will Argento hire good screenwriters already!) which was filled with holes, specially in the last block where dumb-dumb moves to up the suspense were tossed into the mix. Well I didn’t get tense man; I was too busy groaning at the absurdity of it all.
What’s an Argento flick without flamboyant/gory kills? What’s an Argento flick without insane, kinetic shots? Well, its not an Argento flick! Even the stilted acting via obvious dubbing couldn’t have fooled me of that. Do You Like Hitchcock? Yes I do. But I love Argento! Where he at?
We get one bloody bludgeoning, some light blood, a person run over by a car and…and…that’s it! Again…Argento directed this?
Elio Germano (Giulio) handled his part well; too bad his character was a selfish, deviant nerd who treated his girl like trash. Yes, I was rooting for the baddie to off him off so I could take his girlfriend under my pants. Elisabetta Rocchetti (Sasha) was hotter than hells charcoal…her acting skills? WHO CARES! Chiara Conti (Frederica) was hotter than Elisabetta Rocchetti’s hells charcoal…her acting skills? You guessed it, you psychic readers you…WHO CARES! Cristina Brondo (Arianna) was charming and cute as a button as the lead's girlfriend who deserves MUCH better!
T & A
At least we got that! Chicks kissing, a tit shot here, an ass shot there, 2 more tits shots at that end…Arrow be happy. The ladies get some dudes in absence of the tops they call shirts.
Although we get some yummy bleak atmosphere (helped by the top notch photography), gnarly “inside a lock” shots and some groovy killer POVs, the dish was missing Argento’s usual token style and panache.
We get a powerful score by Pino Donaggio that used bass, techno and eerie voices to add pizzazz to the proceedings.
Do You Like Hitchcock had swell ideas, a semi -smooth pace, some amusing movie fanboy allusions and at least one edgy scene. The crappy lead, the un-inspired directing, the lack of violence and the often slap dodge script urinated on of that that like a drunk (i.e. me) trying to score at a lesbian bar. Argento made this film? I wouldn’t have known; this was like John Woo and Paycheck. Somebody give Argento, a bottle of Whisky, a kick in the ass, some bi sexual whores and new screenwriters ASAP! He needs "life" beat back into him in the name of regaining his inpiration! This average effort was beneath his genius.
The film cost 2.5 million clams to make
I think this is the first Argento flick where the killer wears white gloves as opposed to black gloves.