Psychic, The / Sette note in nero (1977)

3.5 out of 5

Jennifer O’Neill is a psychic woman haunted by visions of murder in Lucio Fulci’s underrated giallo, which is also known by the titles of Seven Notes In Black and Murder to the Tune of the Seven Black Notes. After receiving a series of troubling images – which includes someone being bricked up behind a wall – she retreats to a villa owned by her husband and soon recognizes one of the rooms from the vision. The remains of a woman are found behind the wall and an investigation begins which puts the psychic’s life in danger.

Though lacking in gore – with the exception of a bloody suicide swan dive in the beginning few minutes of the film – this atmospheric thriller features moody cinematography, a great performance by O’Neill, and some frightening set pieces. It also includes a haunting and highly memorable soundtrack, especially the title track, which was recycled in Tarantino’s Kill Bill Volume 1.

This sometimes slow-moving giallo is very effective in setting a suspenseful mood through the repetition of visual images and music. It is an excellent example of Fulci’s ability to craft a suspenseful tale without relying on excessive blood and gore.

Maurizio Merli header graphic courtesy of Paddy O'Neill of Foxyfide Graphics