A DRAGONFLY FOR EACH CORPSE (1973) Reviews and overview

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A Dragonfly for Each Corpse is a 1973 Spanish Giallo thriller feature film directed by León Klimovsky (The Vampires’ Night Orgy; Vengeance of the Zombies; The Dracula Saga; et al) from a screenplay written by Ricardo Muñoz Suay, based on a storyline by Jacinto Molina (who stars as Paul Naschy). The Profilmes-C.C. Astro co-production also stars Erika Blanc, Ángel Aranda, María Kosty and Ricardo Merino.


A killer is cleaning up the streets of Milan by murdering those considered to be deviant. An ornamental dragonfly, soaked in the blood of the victim, is left on each body…


“At times, the film almost feels like an intentional send-up of the genre (especially when Naschy is seen boiling pasta, eating salami out of the fridge and making coffee in a Bialetti kettle) but there’s enough gore, nudity and fashionable outfits to make this a passable, though by no means essential, giallo.” Blood Capsules

“The violence is luridly staged and is well over the top, the dialogue is amusing, and Naschy is far more tolerable than usual. The identity of the killer is not as easy to guess as some of the other films in the genre, and I actually found the finale to be quite thrilling, not a phrase I ever thought I’d use when discussing a Klimovsky/Naschy production.” Horrorview

“It’s difficult to pin-point what sets it apart from other gialli; perhaps it’s the fact that it’s slightly less polished, not quite as classy as most of other comparable titles. Having said that it is its earthiness which makes it interesting. Naschy makes a likeable, if cocksure hero; more emotionally rounded than first impressions would suggest (he displays a light comic touch with his scenes with Blanc…” Hysteria Lives!

“If A Dragonfly for Each Corpse is mostly an aping of the classic Giallo, then it is a pretty damn good one. Naschy’s script and story of a killer attempting to wipe out the morally corrupt isn’t necessarily fresh but it’s handled fairly well, even if as a murder mystery though it is finally just functional.” Moon in the Gutter

“Well, it’s a high body count. Often with axe, knife and one very dangerous umbrella. But except a graphic, and very crappy-looking, hand-chopping it’s almost nothing on screen. Everything happens off screen with some splashes of blood here and there.” Ninja Dixon

“It’s not quite as sexy, sleazy or violent as many of its Italian counterparts, but it does offer up a nice mix of tension, high drama and strong action set pieces. Naschy is in fine form as the lead, a cigar chomping man’s man of a cop, the kind that likes to punch first and ask questions later.” Rock! Shock! Pop!

“Though it’s never dull, Klimovsky’s direction is off-form and Naschy’s script meanders through a lot of tedious soap opera sub-plots between killings. Euro-horror vamp Erika Blanc is initially wasted in a cutesy role until she turns detective (whilst studying clues naked in bed!) and deduces who the killer is.” The Spinning Image

Cast and characters:

  • Paul Naschy … Inspector Paolo Scaporella
  • Erika Blanc … Silvana
  • Ángel Aranda … Pietro Volpini
  • María Kosty … Ingrid (as Maria Kosti)
  • Ricardo Merino … Edmundo
  • Susana Mayo … Claudia Volpini
  • Eduardo Calvo … Professor Sandro Campitelli
  • Ramón Centenero
  • Mariano Vidal Molina … Police Commissioner (as Vidal Molina)
  • José Canalejas … Ruggero
  • Anne Marie
  • Beni Deus
  • César Varona … (as Cesar De Barona)
  • María Vidal … Lucia – Prostitute victim
  • Juan Madrigal
  • Ingrid Rabel … Giulia – Secretary
  • Juan Cazalilla
  • Javier de Rivera
  • Frances O’Flynn … Marie, scrubwoman
  • Rafael Albaicín
  • Luis Alonso
  • Antonio Mayans … Cop
  • Ernesto Vañes

Filming locations:

Milan, Italy

Technical credits:

85 minutes
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Film Facts:

As was usually the case with Spanish movies, clothed scenes for the domestic market and unclothed scenes for the international market were shot.

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