The Cat o' Nine Tails

The Cat O' Nine Tails

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The Cat o' Nine Tails

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'''''The Cat o' Nine Tails''''' () is a '''' written and directed by ; it was his second film as director.

Although it is the middle entry in Argento's so-called "animal trilogy" (along with The Bird with the Crystal Plumage and Four Flies on Grey Velvet), the "cat o' nine tails" of the title does not directly refer to a literal cat, nor to a literal multi-tailed whip; rather, it refers to the number of leads that the protagonists follow in the attempt to solve a murder. A heavily edited 90-minute version also exists. This shortened print, which omits most of the violence and references to homosexuality, was released to videotape in the early 1990s.

Though successful in Europe it was dismissed in the United States. Argento admitted in the book Broken Mirrors, Broken Minds: The Dark Dreams of Dario Argento that he was less than pleased with the film. In fact the director often cites it as his least favorite of his films.

Plot summary

Franco Arno (Karl Malden) a middle-aged blind man is walking down a street at night with his niece Lori (Cinzia De Carolis) when they pass by a man in a car. Franco overhears him mention blackmail. Franco bends over, feigning tying his shoes and asks Lori to describe the man in the parked car. Lori does, but says that she cannot see the other man clearly. They walk back to Franco's apartment nearby and while Lori sleeps, Franco works on a puzzle when he hears a noise....
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