A Bay of Blood begins as an elderly countess is brutally murdered in her luxurious mansion on the bay. After her death, several immoral and disgusting individuals come out of the woodwork to claim the inheritance. Unfortunately for them, there is a murdering psychopath on the loose who has a long spear and a handy dandy billhook in his possession, and he knows just how to use them! These men and women are picked off one by one – including a bunch of horny teenage hippies, who trespass into one of the houses on the bay for a little lovemaking and meet their demise.
There’s really no point in going into the intricacies of the plot. These cardboard characters are simply placed into a situation that will allow them to be horribly mangled for our viewing pleasure. The film is beautifully shot, by the way. Mario Bava’s films have always been gorgeous and full of color. The score from Stelvio Cipriani is one of the best of its kind – quintessential seventies Italian film music.
A Bay of Blood (a.k.a. Twitch of the Death Nerve, The Odor of Flesh, and Chain Reaction) proved to be quite controversial at the time of its release. Critics tore it apart because of the bloody content, which they considered atypical of Bava’s normally restrained style. Many considered it a complete failure, but now those very same detractors claim that it is among the director’s most influential films.
A Bay of Blood is an incredibly stupid, gory, and fun film, and it has a doozy of an ending that left my jaw hanging wide open. If you are a fan of the genre, you need to see A Bay of Blood as soon as possible.
Check out the trippy trailer.