Voluptuous Italian starlet Serena Grandi stars in this uneven but memorable giallo from director Lamberto (Demons) Bava as Gloria, a former centerfold model who inherits her dead husband’s sex magazine; Pussycat. One day during a photo shoot, she receives lewd phone calls from her paraplegic teenage neighbor. Gloria dismisses his calls because she feels sorry for him, but when he calls saying that one of her models just got pitchforked to death, she calls the police. It seems that there is a lunatic on the loose that has a grudge against Gloria and is intent on murdering all of her models. The killer, we learn gets off on posing the model’s dead bodies and has photo shoots with their corpses. Of course, after the killer does away with several models, the cross-dressing psycho with a helium voice comes after Gloria.
Although Bava’s pacing is quite inconsistent, he does sprinkle in some quirky touches that makes Delirium stand out from a lot of late 80’s giallos. The most bizarre moments come from the scenes in which the audience looks through the killer’s perspective whenever he’s stalking a potential victim. In these scenes, the killer imagines the models have really weird faces while a red strobe light slowly goes on and off. One of the victims is seen completely featureless, except for having one large veiny eyeball in the center of her face. It’s an odd effect to be sure and is strangely effective.
The biggest WTF scene comes when the killer imagines his victim has a giant Fly-inspired bee face and kills her by unleashing a swarm of bees onto her naked body. Folks, I’ve seen a lot of odd stuff in movies before, so it always delights me whenever I get to witness something this nutty. Naked insect-faced women with big floppy titties getting killed by angry bees. Nice.
Speaking of nudity, there is lots of it, including a pretty good slow-mo hot tub fuck scene featuring Grandi and George Eastman (who were also in The Grim Reaper together). Grandi looks damn fine in this flick and shows off her massive mammary glands every chance she gets. Most of the boobs though come courtesy of garishly cheesy nude photo shoots; the silliest involves a bunch of mummies unwrapping an indifferent looking model.
My interest in Delirium rose and fell with the nudity and random slices of zaniness. The movie is not all fun and game because sometimes it got really bogged down; especially whenever the police came snooping around. Still, any movie that features a nightmare sequence where the heroine gets assaulted by a glow-in-the-dark dildo can’t be all bad.
There’s a lot of hilarious, badly dubbed dialogue in this one like, “I warn you, the hate of a woman can be very bad!”, but I must say my favorite line came from the paraplegic prank caller who tells Gloria, “You make my member hard with desire! It wants to penetrate your flower and explode!”
AKA: Delirium: Photo of Gioia. AKA: Gioia’s Photograph. AKA: Gioia’s Photo. AKA: Photo of Joy.