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Reviews for The Iguana with the Tongue of Fire ( 1971 )

Below-average if still watchable genre effort (IMDB: 6)

On: 4/13/2019 12:00:00 AM By: kannibalcorpsegrinder
Following a dead woman's discovery, the investigating detective is stymied by the fact that the chief suspect is held up behind the diplomatic immunity of a visiting ambassador, but as he becomes more determined to solve the case the bodies pile up which soon puts his family in danger.

Despite some issues here, there are some enjoyable elements present. One of the finest aspects present here is the rather ludicrous levels this one goes through to revel in its mystery. The central ploy of dealing with diplomatic avenues and various red tape that comes from that situation ensure that the struggle to actually investigate matters must be dealt with in a form surrounding that diplomatically which is what makes for such a silly time here as this attempts to accomplish that. Furthermore, this ludicrousness extends to other areas here, most notably the laughably inept flashback sequence showing the detective's main psychological issues with the flashback of him beating the suspect to death or the rather simple methods of interrogation that he has to undertake while in their company which anticipate the later chase scenes in the second half. With the general attitude of the film already gearing for the crazy, a delirious scene on a bobsled run or the absolutely surreal finale that includes a suspenseful chase through fog-lined streets to the bloodsoaked confrontation that features some utterly ludicrous scenarios at play, these here are what hold the film up although there are some problems with this one. Among it's biggest misgivings is that there's just nothing of interest happening for much of the running time, leaving this one feeling bland as a result. The lack of on-screen stalking or scenes featuring the killer stalking his victims is instead replaced with endless talk about the case or how his past is catching up to him, neither of which really prove to be all that interesting. The other real problem with this one is the fact that there's just so much haphazard work featured here that it really undoes a lot of the interesting material on display. The most infamous of which, the fake slow-motion sequence of the flashback showing the detective failing to stop the prisoner's suicide attempt is laughably ludicrous and really turns a tense sequence into a campy sequence, while the gore inserts of the acid-scarred faces crumbling away is somewhat goofy just for the suddenness of showcasing the feature out of the blue. The rest of the film follows in this cheap-looking manner, really causing this one to be lowered significantly.

Rated Unrated/R: Graphic Violence, Nudity, Language, mild sex scenes, violence-against-animals and drug use.

O'Giallo (IMDB: 7)

On: 10/5/2017 12:00:00 AM By: Bezenby
"Your new friend is fast becoming a pain in the arse!"

This is one of the most hilariously ridiculous Giallo I've seen so far, and therefore it's great! It's also the only giallo set in Dublin, so you can see regular Italian actors drinking Guiness and saying "There's been a feckin murder, ya great eedjit".

The film starts off with a woman getting acid thrown in her face and her throat slit rather graphically. We then cut to the Swiss Embassy in Ireland, where her body is discovered in the boot of the ambassador's car. As the killer wore sunglasses during the killing, we also get dramatic soundtracks cues every time a character in this film has a pair of sunglasses!

Luigi Pistilli is the ex-cop hired by regular cops to track down the killer, and even though he's as Roman as you can get, his bushy eyebrows and curly hair do kind of work with his Irish dubbed voice. He gets straight down to investigating by hooking up with the Ambassador's daughter, played by wonky eyed Dagmar Lassander. Her dad is a complete jerk, her mother a drug addict, and her brother played by Werner Pocath in an insane bald get-up that has nothing to do with the plot but looks mental anyway!

Someone seems to be killing off people associated with the Swiss embassy, and next up is a cabaret singer with ties to the ambassador. There also seems to be a gay thing going on with some other guy and the ambassador's butler that involves blackmail, as well as the chauffeur being involved in another, separate blackmail plot. Looks like many people are up for an acid facial/throat slashing!

The daftness of this film is great. Every character at some point starts acting like they want to murder someone, from Luigi putting his hands around Dagmar's throat as if he's going to throw her off a cliff before just kissing her, to Luigi's gran getting pounced on by a gloved killer, only to reveal that it's her granddaughter reminding her to wear her glasses so she can hear better (I'm not making that up).

The chauffeur has an alibi as he was at the "Swasitika Laundry" (not making it up), and Luigi is even a suspect for a few minutes because his gran finds a bloody razor in a cupboard. That's the same scene that involves his cat being stabbed to death and stuffed in the fridge. Then there's the bobsleigh crash that is so crap I was howling with laughter...

We need films like this. Every time someone gets slashed in the throat a gallon of blood comes out. There's boobs everywhere and the Irish accents just add to the surrealism. This is a must watch to be honest if you're into crap films...

certainly entertaining enough (IMDB: 7)

On: 4/15/2016 12:00:00 AM By: christopher-underwood
This starts very well, indeed, startlingly so with surreal quality about it as we proceed from outlandish and vivid killing to child finding body in trunk of car and something strange going on with eyes. Various persons emerge from secret doors and there is emphasis upon dark glasses and limited sight with some weird sound going off to suggest something untoward is about to happen. Things calm down and killing become a bit mundane, very bloody but not very involving until the end when things spark back into life. Along the way, Anton Differing is effective, if a little one note and Dagmar Lassander lovely as ever. Veteran actress, Valentina Cortese puts in a great little performance and Italian movie stalwart Luigi Pistilli is most effective. Great shots of Dublin and Switzerland along the way and if this is not the finest giallo, it is certainly entertaining enough.

Love the title; like the film. (IMDB: 7)

On: 1/6/2015 12:00:00 AM By: BA_Harrison
Pay no heed to the somewhat disparaging reviews here on IMDb: although The Iguana With The Tongue of Fire fails to live up to its wonderfully evocative title thanks to a rather mediocre storyline and a lacklustre finale, there is still much to entertain fans of the genre. Director Riccardo Freda's film features a decent cast, atmospheric location work in Ireland and Switzerland, some gnarly violence, silly red herrings aplenty, a little action, and a touch of sleaze, making this one fun despite the drawbacks of the plot.

The film stars Luigi Pistilli as Detective John Norton, whose investigation into the murder of a young woman (who has her face ruined by sulphuric acid and her neck sliced with a cut-throat razor in the gory opener) sees him becoming personally involved in the case after he develops a relationship with Helen (Dagmar Lassander), sexy daughter of the prime suspect, Swiss diplomat Ambassador Sobiesky (Anton Diffring). As the bodies continue to pile up, Norton's own mother and teenage daughter find themselves at risk...

From its gruesome opening, to the spectacular demise of the film's killer, The Iguana With The Tongue of Fire is trashy fun and should appeal to those who love their giallos bloody and sleazy; if the likes of The New York Ripper and Strip Nude for The Killer float your boat, you'll most likely get a kick out of this one too. In addition to the juicy razor attacks, we also get a 'decapitated cat in a fridge' gag, and Norton's mother having her head bashed in, while the nudity includes Lassender getting her top off for a brief sex scene, and Norton's daughter being attacked while just in her knickers (her childish dubbed voice making this scene a tad uncomfortable to watch).

The film also offers some great unintentional laughs: the woeful 'Oirish' dubbing will no doubt illicit some chuckles, as will the numerous red-herrings (everyone seems to own a pair of sunglasses, a cut-throat razor, or leather gloves) which, as if they're not blatant enough, are accompanied by a crashingly loud sound effect that really drives the point home—this is a possible clue and the owner of the item in question could be the killer!!!! The final reveal of the murderer's identity and his convoluted motive for killing are suitably daft—the icing on the whole silly giallo cake.

Watchable and pretty sadistic Italian giallo. (IMDB: 7)

On: 11/29/2014 12:00:00 AM By: HumanoidOfFlesh
So I decided to re-watch "The Iguana and the Tongue of Fire" by Riccardo Freda after many years of not seeing the movie.In the prologue beautiful woman has her face melted with acid and her throat slashed by unknown black gloved killer.Her body is found in the trunk of a car belonging to the Swiss ambassador.Former police Inspector John Norton(Luigi Pistill)tries to solve this grisly case of mutilation and murder.But the elusive killer soon will kill more victims.""The Iguana and the Tongue of Fire" is a watchable albeit quite unsatisfying giallo with several nasty and gory murder scenes and very sadistic finale.The acting is fairly good and there is a bit of nudity.Still it seems that Riccardo Freda himself was dissatisfied with the film and effectively disowned it.That's why he directed it under the pseudonym of Willy Pareto.7 fiery iguanas out of 10.

a supremely limber and entertaining giallo-esque thriller (IMDB: 7)

On: 1/23/2014 12:00:00 AM By: Darkling_Zeist
With the rather cumbersome title of 'The Iguana with the Tongue of Fire' the film itself actually proves to be a supremely limber and entertaining giallo-esque thriller from Riccardo Freda. Thus far the general consensus on this lurid early 70's slasher is a trifle underwhelming, but, on the contrary, I really enjoyed this brisk, Ireland-set thriller; with all its pungent red herrings; gonzoid throat slashings, and plethora of charred, vitriol burned flesh.

The venerable Anton Diffring does his regular aristocratic aloof spiel with great elan, and the sublime Pistilli makes a zesty show of the violent, maverick copper; all in all 'Iguana with the tongue of fire' is a blast; and yet again, il maestro Stelvio Cipriani percolates another magnificently potent score.

THE IGUANA WITH THE TONGUE OF FIRE (Riccardo Freda, 1971) **1/2 (IMDB: 7)

On: 10/24/2011 12:00:00 AM By: Bunuel1976
After having been instrumental in introducing the Fantasy genre (which would thrive for close to 40 years) in Italy, with four classics to his name – I VAMPIRI (1956), CALTIKI, THE IMMORTAL MONSTER (1959), THE HORRIBLE DR. HICHCOCK (1962) and THE GHOST (1963) – much like James Whale in 1930s Hollywood, Freda's enthusiasm for the genre seems to have run out. Even so, towards the end of the 1960s, he dabbled in a new and flourishing branch of the horror/thriller genre, albeit with diminishing results: the pretty good (if derivative) DOUBLE FACE (1969); the film under review which, while not bad, is essentially uninspired; and the hilariously inept TRAGIC CEREMONY (1972); a measure of the director's own increasing disenchantment with his work is the fact that, in the case of the latter two, he chose to be credited not under his usual (thus recognizable) Anglicized alias of Robert Hampton but rather as the obscure Willy Pareto! For the record, after almost a decade of silence, he would return for one last fling with yet another Giallo i.e. the as-yet-unwatched MURDER OBSESSION (1981) featuring Softcore starlet Laura Gemser!

To get back to the matter at hand, I have always found myself in two minds when it comes to this type of international production: while I generally lean towards the Italian dialogue because in all probability the script would have been written in that language, I know that, in most cases, the actors deliver their lines in English!; here, then, since the narrative is set in the Irish city of Dublin anyway, it would be natural to take this route. The thing is that I first laid my hands on an English-dubbed version (though, at least, both Anton Diffring and Valentina Cortese lend their voices to its audio track) but then also came across one in Italian which, however, I did not feel inclined to acquire (the irony is that, on the English-language print, the credits are still presented in their native language!); in fact, quite a number of Gialli I got hold of in English have been turning up in Italian (online or on TV) but I rarely, if ever, bother to 'upgrade' anymore!

Anyway, here we get the usual flurry of vicious murders (of the throat-slitting or acid-splashing variety right from the very opening sequence – unfortunately, while the gore is plentiful, it looks ultra-fake!) countered by a Police investigation, set against stylish backdrops and accompanied by a delightful score (courtesy of Stelvio Cipriani). The other notable cast members, both genre stalwarts, are leads Luigi Pistilli and Dagmar Lassander (as the fast-living daughter of globe-trotting ambassador Diffring and drug-addled Cortese). Typically, the complex plot yields suspects galore, since most of the characters generally have something to hide (Diffring is a lecher, thus prone to blackmail, while ex-cop Pistilli's violent streak during interrogations has driven a suspect to suicide, etc.) but, as often happens, once the villain's identity is revealed, we get a motive that is all but flimsy (here, this figure had actually been so peripheral to the narrative that one's reaction to the finale is extremely muted and downright indifferent)!

The surprising carelessness on the film-makers' part is evidenced in an early banal dialogue exchange relating to the use of acid as a murder weapon, which suggests that the killer may be either a woman or a colored person(!) and the fact that the music is allowed to go preposterously over-the-top when it wants to direct our attention – fruitlessly, as it turns out – to would-be vital clues like sun-glasses or razor-blades! Besides, there is additional gratuitous gore (an effectively graphic shot of a suture being applied to a gash on Pistilli's head) and nudity (apart from the obligatory love scene between Lassander and Pistilli, there is also a somewhat disturbing shot of Pistilli's underage daughter in the nude{!} being pursued by the killer inside their home – but, truly, why on earth should Pistilli's relatives be targeted?), some bizarre comic touches (provided by Pistilli's elderly amateur sleuth of a mother, who is repeatedly told that she cannot hear properly unless the woman has her glasses on – WTF, right?! – except that a colleague of mine, who I am sure is unfamiliar with the film, actually makes of that assertion a running gag!) and an unusual prevalence for foul language (especially on Diffring's part)! Although this is somewhat better than the reviews I have read of it would have you believe, the end result satisfied neither the director (who also edited the film under the afore-mentioned alias) nor prolific German co-producer Artur Brauner who decided it was not worthy of a theatrical release in his native country! Having said that, it was rather ingenious of the screenplay to have Cortese's supposed assassination attempt turn out to be a bungled suicide and that the seemingly scot-free Diffring is revealed at the film's very end as having actually murdered the first victim and that Justice will be catching up with him shortly upon making his return to Switzerland!

Awesome Giallo-title, Mediocre Giallo-plot ... (IMDB: 5)

On: 6/23/2009 12:00:00 AM By: Coventry
On paper this sounds like the exemplary and most mouth-watering Giallo purchase any fan of the genre could ever fantasize about. The title is amazing and only something an Italian Giallo writer could come up with, the cast is stellar (teaming Dagmar Lassander of "Hatchet for the Honeymoon", Anton Diffring of "Circus of Horrors" and Luigi Pistilli of "Bay of Blood" in one film!!) and writer/director Ricardo Freda is a reliable name in the business. Heck, even the opening sequences are extremely promising, with an enchanting musical score, an original setting (in Dublin, Ireland) and a downright fantastic – albeit cheesy – first death sequence. We witness the murder of a lovely young girl by a killer that is the utmost sadistic, to say the least! The poor thing has the entire content of a bottle of acid thrown in her pretty face before the maniac slits open her throat from ear to ear with a razor. This is a damn cool sight to behold in case you're a fan of this sort of sick cinema, even when the make-up effects are poor and the set-up is completely tasteless. Unfortunately, however, the film only sinks deeper and deeper downhill from this point onwards. "The Iguana with the Tongue of Fire" suffers from an unimaginably incoherent screenplay that attempts to blend high-society murder with cop-drama and cheap B-movie sleaze? Not exactly an effective combination!

In this 100% Italian-made movie, the Dutch mistress of the Swiss Ambassador in Ireland (how's that for European companionship?) is brutally slain by a clearly depraved killer. Former cop with a trauma John Norton sacrifices himself to seduce the beautiful and much younger Ambassador's daughter to infiltrate in these high society regions and investigate the murder further. Whilst the sleazy Ambassador hides himself behind his diplomatic immunity status, the murderer cheerfully continues to slice and dice random people in and around the Ambassador's estate. There are some very essential elements missing in Freda's "The Iguana with the Tongue of Fire". Unlike in the Gialli of, say, Dario Argento or Sergio Martino, the plot and characters nearly aren't as compelling as they should be. Never at one point in the film you feel the urge to help solving the murder puzzle or guessing along for the killer's identity. It's like you know already from beforehand that the denouement will be so absurd and implausible that you don't even bother contemplating about it. Also, the script contains far too many tedious dead-end scenes and certain sub plots that are just utterly ridiculous; like detective Norton's blind & deaf old mother with Agatha Christie allures. Aside from the splendid aforementioned first murder and a few other cool sequences near the end, the movie is tame and unmemorable. The joyous title, if you're interested, refers to a brief little anecdote one of the police characters narrates to his colleague and it is, in fact, totally irrelevant to the story itself. I guess it just sounded too cool not to use and simultaneously it cashes in on Dario Argento's trend to use animals in Gialli ("Bird with the Crystal Plumage", "Four Flies on Grey Velvet" ?)

GiallO'Murphy (IMDB: 6)

On: 5/23/2008 12:00:00 AM By: Witchfinder-General-666
"L'Iguana dalla lingua di fuoco" aka. "The Inguana with the Tongue of Fire" is certainly not a very memorable or spectacular Giallo, but it is still a pretty entertaining film that I recommend to my fellow Italian Horror buffs. The film, which is brought to you by director Riccardo Freda ("Lo Spettro", "Murder Inferno",...) has its flaws, but it also has quite a bunch of highly memorable elements. The film takes place in Ireland and, as far as I know of, this is the only Giallo ever set in Eire. The plot may not be the most original, and the twists sometimes seem a bit silly for Giallo standards, yet this is very cool in some aspects. The film has an eerie general mood and is often quite nasty, with gory murders, and the great Italian actor Luigi Pistilli in the lead as an investigating ex-cop. Pistilli truly was one of the greats in Italian cult-cinema, whose great performances complimented masterpieces of a variety of genres, such as brilliant Westerns ("For A Few Dollars More", "The Good The Bad And The Ugly", "The Great Silence"), ingenious Crime-Cinema ("Milano Calibro 9"), sublime Gialli ("Your Vice Is A Locked Room And Only I Have The Key", "The Scorpion's Tail") or Mario Bava's blood-soaked slasher landmark "A Bay Of Blood", just to mention some of the most memorable films the man has been in. And Pistilli once again delivers a great performance as the former Detective John Norton, a Dublin ex-copper who lives with his teenage daughter and his almost deaf mother. After a murder near the Swiss embassy, other violent murders follow. Since the police don't find any clues, the ex-detective Norton is appointed to the case... As mentioned above, the murder sequences are quite gory and nasty (if sometimes a bit clumsy). The score is also excellent, which contributes a lot to the atmosphere. The film also has some silly elements, such as a shrill tune whenever something eerie happens, but never to an extent that would lessen the entertainment-value. Pistilli is great, and the rest of the performances are not bad either, Anton Diffring is wonderfully arrogant as the Swiss ambassador, Irish actor Arthur O'Sullivan is very good as a grumpy elderly Police inspector, and beautiful Dagmar Lassander makes a sexy female lead. All things considered, this film is certainly no Giallo-highlight, but it is an overall entertaining flick that is well worth watching for Italian Horror buffs.

Rough around the edges but interesting giallo! (IMDB: 6)

On: 3/18/2008 12:00:00 AM By: niallahearne
Hi, Actually some of this film was made in Waterford, including the 'bridge in the fog' and river scenes. I was an eighteen year old working as an assistant in a chemist shop on the quays in Waterford when some of the crew came in and asked my boss Michael F. O'Connor to make up a concoction that would fizzle like acid when thrown on the victim. This he duly did, after some experimentation! They spent at least three days in Waterford. This was a very exciting event for me as I was a huge movie buff, and I still am of course! I have the DVD release and also the soundtrack composed by Stelvio Cipriani. Great memories. I would be glad to hear from you if you ever read this message. Niall.

Dissapointng Giallo (IMDB: 5)

On: 7/23/2007 12:00:00 AM By: Prof-Hieronymos-Grost
The Swiss ambassador to Dublin, Ambassador Sobiesky (Anton Diffring) is shocked to find a dead naked body of a girl in the trunk of his car, her face distorted from the acid the killer uses, despite this the identity of the girl is forthcoming and the police find that she was a dutch national, which was where the Ambassador had his previous post. the local police suspicious of this their only clue, have to tread carefully because of his diplomatic immunity and send a Detective John Norton (Luigi Pistilli) known as "the brute" in undercover to find out the truth. Norton is a man haunted by his past, because he let a man in custody steal his gun, the result of which was a bloody suicide, his reputation in tatters, this is an opportunity for some glory?maybe? He soon befriends the daughter Helen (Dagmar |Lassander) of the ambassador in order to find out the truth. Strangely set in my home town, it brought back many memories of my childhood, some scenes even shot 2 minutes from my childhood home, despite this obvious plus side the film is just a tad boring and lacking in thrills, it does have some gory moments that are rather fake looking, the cast is fine and Pistilli excepted they are never really allowed to shine and I must say I found it rather off putting to see the usually intense Pistilli talking with a a stagey Oirish brogue. There are also a few suspicious minor characters that are never explained. Despite this there are some positives, Norton's mother a keen detective/mystery fiction fan who is keen to provide her son with her notion of who the killer is, provides some light relief as in some ways her ideas are more successful than her sons. Stelvio Cipriani's nice score seems very familiar, again I believe this may have been reworked in later work of his, in either Death walks on high heels or perhaps What have they done to your daughters?. There is also a rather downbeat ending, a sting in the tail so to speak but its rushed a little by Freda and if you're not paying attention you might even miss it.

Want to get copy of this movie (IMDB: 10)

On: 12/30/2006 12:00:00 AM By: countjohnny
This is not a review as I have not seen the movie but I worked on it as 3rd Assistant Director and also had a part as a barman opposite star Luigi Pistilli - all of 30 seconds. Would love to have a copy for posterity! Your reviewer was pretty accurate as to the gore. I was there when granny's cat got its throat cut in the fridge. I can also tell you a tale or two about the cast and the making of the movie. The whole thing was shot in 2 weeks on location in Dublin. One of the dead bodies in the boot of the car was a friend of mine. The car used in the final scene where the villain crashes through the window belonged to a friend of mine. We had to get it resprayed after that. If anyone can tell me where I can get a copy I would be truly grateful Regards - John McCormack

Just as silly as it's title, but not as easy to like (IMDB: 5)

On: 5/11/2006 12:00:00 AM By: The_Void
The title of this film is one of the most ludicrously lurid in the whole Giallo sub-genre, and that gives the viewer the right impression of this film. Some Giallo's strive for artistic merit, while others are more than happy to depict graphic, violent murders and make the sleaze and trashiness the main ingredient; this film is one of the latter. The film gets off to a very promising start, with a bloody murder that sees a young woman have acid thrown in her face before having her throat sliced open with a razorblade. While this sequence is poorly brought to the screen and suffers from really bad special effects, it's at least entertaining. However, from there the film quickly moves downhill, and director Riccardo Freda bombards the viewer with tedious sequence after tedious sequence, until the ending in which the film gets back on track. The plot after the initial murder sees the mutilated corpse turn up in the boot of the Swiss Ambassador's car. The Ambassador refuses to cooperate with the police as the girl was a former lover of his, and hard-bitten ex-cop John Norton is soon drafted in as the murders continue...

If Riccardo Freda could have made the middle of the movie as trashy and violent as the beginning and end, this could have been a pristine slice of Giallo sleaze; but the fact that the plot gets far too convoluted means the film gets boring too quickly, and despite a couple of decent scenarios in the centre of the film, there really isn't much to remember it for. The best sequence in the movie sees a young woman being chased through the streets by the murderer. The scene setting is good as the smoke filled pathway looks absolutely gorgeous, and the total lunacy of the conclusion to the chase bodes well with the trash theme of the movie. The acting leaves a lot to be desired and the poorly dubbed voices don't help. Of course, this isn't an actor's film; but considering the talent involved, this part of the movie should have been better. The murder scenes feel a little too much like an excuse to show blood and guts, and the fact that they aren't very well realised helps to ensure this. The climax is good, however, and while the identity of the killer doesn't really matter after watching the ninety minute ordeal, the revelation scene is good trashy fun. There isn't a lot I can recommend this for other than the obvious cult value; but fans of lurid cinema may find something to like.

Could have been worse, should have been better (IMDB: 7)

On: 5/16/2001 12:00:00 AM By: jangu
I was rather disappointed by this effort from Freda, who's visual style I have always admired. "Iguana" is by comparison to many of his other movies rather clumsily assembled and Freda is not very sure in his timing of the shock-effects. There are compensations: a thrilling chase on a bridge, above-average performances, nice Dublin locations and a surprisingly nasty conclusion that involves a crazed killer beating up an old woman and torturing a semi-nude 16 year old!

However, these compensations are not enough to make it a worthwhile movie, even for fans of the giallo genre.

The plot is uninteresting and rather muddled, the score and cinematography sub-standard (for a film directed by super-stylist Riccardo Freda, I mean) and what is this hilarious obsession with sun-glasses!!!

According to rumor Riccard Freda wasn't too happy with "Iguana" himself and used the pseudonym "Willy Pareto" in the credits. It's not that it's a bad movie, it's just that it should have been so much better considering everyone involved.

It's not a masterpiece but, however it's a loving film (IMDB: 5)

On: 12/3/2000 12:00:00 AM By: alanurso
I agree with my swiss friends. I say that this film isn't surely a masterpiece neither one of the best Freda's films. Characters are not very expressive, storyboard is week and not very plausible. However I must highly recommend this film mostly for gory scenes. Murders are savage and extremely violent; above all three scenes deserve to be remembered: the Luigi Pistilli flashback; the cat killed and close into the fridge; and the final scene. These are three motives for watching, watching again and adoring.

Gory giallo with some unusual ideas (IMDB: 6)

On: 10/24/2000 12:00:00 AM By: rundbauchdodo
Riccardo Freda's rude giallo is not quite a masterpiece, but it still delivers good entertainment and some stuff quite unusual for the "typical" Italian thriller of the Sixties and Seventies. First of all, the movie plays in Dublin, which I already assume unique in the history of giallo. Second, the family involved in the crimes is the one of the Dutch ambassador in the Republic of Ireland, which makes the case even more complicated for the policemen involved.

Also very remarkable is the fact that this giallo delivers no nude scenes, which is quite rare for this genre. And last but not least, it's one of the goriest gialli before Dario Argento made "Profondo Rosso" (Deep Red). E.g.: Some hapless victims get their faces mutilated by acid before the killer slits their throats.

By the way Freda delivers some thrilling and uncanny moments, and the climax is extremely nasty for various reasons: It has to be seen to be believed. The cast - including Anton Diffring, Luigi Pistilli, Dagmar Lassander and Werner Pochath - is above average and always convincing.

All in all, "L'Iguana dalla Lingua di Fuoco" is not a masterly but still very cool giallo. Its only fault (possibly) is that it's too nasty for the easily offended - but easily offended people don't watch gialli anyway, I guess.