Last Stop on the Night Train (L'ultimo treno della notte)
last stop on the night train | l'ultimo treno della notte | aldo lado | renato izzo | flavio bucci | macha meril | Macha Méril | gianfranco de grassi | remake | the virgin spring | thriller | italy | exploitation | kidnap | murder | death | the last house on the left
Film: Last Stop on the Night Train (L’ultimo treno della notte)
Director: Aldo Lado
Writer: Renato Izzo and Aldo Lado
Starring: Flavio Bucci, Macha Méril and Gianfranco De Grassi
This film begins in a city’s outdoor market. We meet two thugs who are mugging people are played by Flavio Bucci and Gianfranco De Grassi. They move about the world around them, causing mischief and really not contributing anything to society.
We also have two college students. Through them we realize that this film begins in Germany. One of them is a German girl played by Irene Miracle and the other is an Italian girl played by Marina Berti. They are taking a train to Italy to spend Christmas with Berti’s family.
We then get to meet her family. Her father is a professor at a hospital and he is also a doctor. We get to see him performing surgery and teaching some students what to do; he is played by Enrico Maria Salerno. His wife is a homemaker now that her daughter is away at school; she is played by Laura D’Angelo. She speaks with the woman her daughter is staying with and learns that her daughter will be taking the train that night. The woman D’Angelo speaks with tells her about the tie she bought for her Salerno and the scarf she bought for herself as well. They get on their train.
Bucci and Grassi rob a woman with some money and rip her fur coat. The police chase after them and they sneak on the train before it leaves.
While on the train we meet another person. There is a woman who is sitting in a car with some intellectual types, the woman played by Macha Méril. They speak about different topics. There is a man sitting next to this woman that helps her when she drops her purse. Her things fall out and among it is a pornographic picture we get a quick view of. We realize there is something up about her.
Miracle and Berti had stolen some cigarettes before getting on the train and they start to smoke them. They are being loud and lewd with their talk, drawing some looks from the other passengers. They end up meeting the hoodlums who are being rude as well. They end up hanging out for a little bit, even with Miracle and Berti helping them dodge the ticket checkers.
Their opinion changes of Bucci and Grassi when Bucci ends up meeting Méril. He follows her into the bathroom and she at first wants him out. He feels up her and puts his hand up her dress. They end up having sex in the bathroom. This is what we learn is up with her, she is a nymphomaniac.
The train stops and is checked. Everyone on board needs to stay on, show their passports, have their tickets checked as well as their luggage. Miracle and Berti get off by convincing one of the guards that they need to call Berti’s parents to let them know about the delay. When they get off and do this, they learn there is a one-way train from this station. They decide to get on it.
They don’t realize that Bucci, Grassi and Méril also get off the train. They get on this same one. Berti and Miracle are having a small meal when they are barged in upon by the deviant group. This is where the nightmare starts.
There is another passenger who ends up accidently breaking the handle to get into this train car; this passenger is played by Franco Fabrizi. He tries to fix it, but fails. Inside the cabin, sexual perversion happens. There are inappropriate questions asked and asking the women to strip. Bucci and Méril have sex again. Grassi uses drugs and wants to have sex with Miracle, but she kicks him in the groin and he beats her up. Méril notices Fabrizi watching and he gets drug into the cabin. He is told to have sex with Miracle. He flees when the train stops hiding his face as he escapes.
This all comes to a head when Grassi and Méril target Berti. She is a virgin and Grassi cannot get inside of her. He decides to use his knife to help her out, which we learn that something similar was done to Méril. She encourages him on. They end up killing Berti. When this happens, Miracle escapes. She is chased into the bathroom and she jumps out of the window. The deviants decide to clean up by throwing Berti, out of the window, along with all of their stuff. What makes these scenes even more disturbing is their use of editing to match this up with Salerno and D’Angelo having a dinner party while these attacks are happening next to it. The talk at dinner involves youth being violent, which is fitting.
Salerno and D’Angelo go to pick up the girls at the train station. When they don’t get off, they ask the man at the station if there was a delay. He tells them he will look into. The couple does meet the deviant group though. Will they realize what this trio has done or will they get away? There was a message given to a friend of Berti, will this ever get back to her parents? Grassi puts on the tie that was supposed to go to Salerno, will that be their downfall? Or will it be the scarf that Méril is now wearing?
This film is an Italian version of The Virgin Spring or the Last House on the Left. While this version is enjoyable, I found it a little bit boring. I think once it gets to the action, it is solid. I do like that in this version, it does have the same crew as the Last House on the Left has, but in a different way. We have the two thugs, but the woman they meet is not part of their group, yet she is still sexually deviant. She joins them and I thought that was an interesting take. I think the scenes of action are solid as well. I will point out they are disturbing though, not as graphic as the American version. It shows less, but it still bothered me. I also thought there was some really good editing in this one.
What I didn’t like was there was a lot of the movie where we don’t get much going on. I think there is a lot of down time that tries to build more of the story and I don’t think it does what it is really trying to do. I found this to be the most boring version of this story that I have seen. It doesn’t ruin the film completely, but it doesn’t stir up the feelings of rage as well as the other versions. I found it a little bit unrealistic how Salerno found out what this trio did to their daughter. I didn’t like what they did with Méril at the end though.
I thought this is a solid version of the parent’s getting revenge for what happened to their child films. It is not as exciting as some of the other versions, but it is still disturbing. Which in a film like this, you really need. The acting is okay, but nothing that really blew me away. The story is okay as well; it just had too many scenes that I found to be unnecessary and slowed it down. With that said, still is a solid version of The Virgin Spring. I would give it a viewing if you liked it or if you liked the American version, The Last House on the Left. Not better than them, but still worth your viewing if you liked them.
My Rating: 6 out of 10