Critically acclaimed film editor, Ray Ciso, resorts to cutting trash pictures when an accident left him with four wooden fingers on his hand. When lead actors from his current production begin getting killed off one by one, the police suspect Ray as the killer. As the body count rises, Ray must clear his name and discover the truth in this Canadian love letter to Italian giallo.
If you have no familiarity with giallo, the film’s absurdist style and humor might confuse. As a whole, it is one giant homage and love letter filled with nods and Easter eggs to Italian horror masters Dario Argento, Mario Bava, and all of the cinematic geniuses of 70’s Italian slashers. From a book that blatantly references Dario Argento’s “The Three Mothers” trilogy to a blind character that looks an awful lot like Cinzia Monreale’s character from “The Beyond,” the references are endless. All of giallo’s flaws are lovingly poked fun of here; the intentional bad English dubbing, the over the top sexism, and the awful dialogue are all played up for laughs.
Even the cinematography captures the style. The awkward camera zooms, the lighting and coloration, and most importantly, the terrible editing jumps. Most important considering the plot, which enhances the Meta feel of the film. A badly edited film of an editor forced to edit bad films; clever. Also true to style is the overt sexuality and violence and eerie synth score. Adding to authenticity is famed giallo composer Claudio Simonetti, known for his work on “Susperia” and “Deep Red.”
It’s clear Adam Brooks is a student of the giallo, as not only does he play lead Ray Ciso, but he co-wrote the screenplay, co-directed, served as one of directors of photography, and also produced the film. That every single aspect of The Editor is saturated in its Italian slasher roots proves this is his baby. Though this film is a horror comedy, poking fun of the sub-genre as a whole, none of the jokes feel mean spirited.
Look for cameos by genre actor Udo Kier and “Human Centipede” actor Laurence R. Harvey. Paz de la Huerto plays Ray Ciso’s unhappy wife, and her brand of bad acting fits her role well. In fact, almost all of the actors are purposefully bad, which is all the more appropriate when delivering lines such as, “Don’t worry! We’ll catch the killer that killed her!”
Overall, Adam Brooks crafted a modern day giallo comedy, and every single detail of the film proves that. However, this also causes the film to be one giant inside joke that excludes anyone not familiar with 70’s and 80’s Italian slashers. Those in the know will love and appreciate what Adam Brooks has constructed. Those unfamiliar might be lost along the way, especially when the climax takes a turn for the paranormal and surreal as typical of the genre. Perhaps, though, the Editor might inspire viewers to seek out those classics.
Rating: 7 out of 10
About the Author
Meagan Navarro is a blogger from Houston, TX. She fell in love with monsters at age four after being exposed to them via Ghostbusters, and her passion grew into an obsession for all things horror and Halloween (which is the entire month of October, as far as she’s concerned). Meagan also loves traveling and chocolate.