Il Profumo della Signora in Nero (1974)

Il Profumo della Signora in Nero


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Movie Info

Francesco Barilli, star of Prima della Rivoluzione, made his directorial debut with this unique, hallucinatory horror-thriller. 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 reminiscent of Alice in Wonderland, who may be Sylvia herself as a child. It turns out that Sylvia stabbed her mother's sexually abusive boyfriend to … More

Rating: PG
Genre: Horror, Art House & International, Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By: Massimo D'Avaci, Francesco Barilli
In Theaters:
On DVD: Mar 15, 2011



as Sylvia
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Critic Reviews for Il Profumo della Signora in Nero

All Critics (3)

One of the most tense, and delectably unfathomable Italian horror films ever made... as pure as any cinematic depiction of descent into insanity.

Full Review… | June 17, 2014
Antagony & Ecstasy

There's no lack of mood and atmosphere, key elements both, but there isn't enough anchoring them to plot or character for it to matter.

Full Review… | October 25, 2011
Not Coming to a Theater Near You

... the hall of mirrors reflecting reality and fantasy back on one another is part of the fun and the Satanic reverberations of the conspiratorial climax only adds to the mystery.

Full Review… | April 1, 2011

Audience Reviews for Il Profumo della Signora in Nero


More or less nails the shift of tone that all giallo should strive for - gentle absurdity in the beginning that segues into complete insanity. This is a slower one, leaden with exposition (especially in its first half), but it looks great, the performances are solid, and the ending is wild. Definitely worth it.

Drew Smith

Super Reviewer

Not knowing anything about this movie before I sat down to watch it, I'd assumed from the title and the star (Mimsy Farmer, fresh from Dario Argento's Four Flies on Grey Velvet) that it was going to be a giallo. In fact, The Perfume of the Lady in Black owes more to that particular brand of psychological horror at which Roman Polanski used to excel. Indeed, albeit substituting voodoo for devil worship, there are definite echoes of Rosemary's Baby to be found here. Attractively photographed and nicely scored throughout, the film is technically a cut above much of the trash that was being made at the time, and even the typically bad dubbing cannot quite ruin Farmer's decent performance. Unfortunately, the plot makes no sense whatsoever and, though the movie is commendably and refreshingly bloodless for most of its running time, the incongruously gory climax leaves a nasty aftertaste.

Stephen M

Super Reviewer

A solid and stylish, if lesser known, giallo that blends the traditional exploitative traits of the genre together with an almost surrealistic, hallucinatory aesthetic. A solid if not quite masterful example of the form, The Perfume of the Lady in Black will delight giallo fans with its twists and turns and slow descent into madness.

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