Monday, March 8, 2010

The Mephisto Waltz (1971)

3.5 / 5 Mar '10
Tagline: The Devil Calls The Tune
Directed by: Paul Wendkos
Written by: Ben Maddow, Fred Mustard Stewart
Actors Include: Alan Alda, Jacqueline Bisset, Barbara Parkins
Genre: Horror
Length: 115 minutes
Banned: Nope

This wasn't the most exciting film, in fact it dragged and dragged for much of the time (it did not need to be nearly 2 hours long), yet the story is a rewarding one. I think the biggest problem with this film is actually Alan Alda who is pretty unlikeable, especially as a romantic lead (eww). Alda plays a pianist with a great range and quite the ability, in fact when he meets with a famous classical composer the two seem inseparable. Something doesn't seem quite right however (maybe because the composer is a Satanist?), and shortly after the composer's death there are some major changes in Alda. Most of those who dig looking at women will appreciate Jacqueline Bisset as the female romantic lead here (though I kept picturing her as James on Nip/Tuck) who does show a bit of skin. Bissette notices something isn't right with her Husband and starts to solve the mystery...but will it be too late? If they changed Alda with another actor and tightened it up this could have been quite brilliant, the story is a good one. It's just a shame that as is, it's worthwhile but a bit frustrating for quite a while.

Availability:  On DVD as part of a 2fer with House On Skull Mountain

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