Paul Vecchiali’s 1970 French giallo film The Strangler is receiving a 2K restoration from Altered Innocence. The tragically underseen film, released before Dario Argento and Lucio Fulci made giallo a super-popular sub-genre of horror opened in New York City, Los Angeles, Austin, Chicago, Denver, Raleigh, San Francisco, Yonkers and Seattle over the weekend.
These screenings mark the very first theatrical releases for The Strangler in the United States. It was a selection for Fantastic Fest this year.
The Strangler made its world premiere back in 1970 at Cannes, and Vecchiali was very highly regarded in France. He never reached that level of acclaim in the states, and sadly passed away this year.
No doubt, he would have been gratified to know that he is the subject of a special series at the Metrograph Theatre in New York. The series focuses on Diagonale, Vecchiali’s production company, which employed many female and queer filmmakers.
Vecchiali was known for experimental filmmaking, often exploring queer themes. The
Strangler introduces us to Emile, who witnessed the strangulation death of a woman when he was just a boy. The event affected him greatly, and Emile now lurks in the shadows in Paris, seeking out and killing sad, lonely women by strangling them with a white scarf.
Detective Simon Dangret is on a mission to find the serial killer. Also hot on his heels are a woman who believes she is to be the next victim, and a man who commits his own foul deeds.
From the Fantastic Fest website:
“While you may not have seen Paul Vecchiali’s The Strangler, you have certainly seen films influenced by the ‘70s French genre icon. Everything from Cruising to SE7EN feels idebted to this sleazy, psychosexual exploration of loneliness and violence.”
For more details and screening locations and dates for The Strangler, check out the film’s website.