The spectacular virtuosity of Totò: he plays six characters, the murdered man and the five prime suspects
The more macabre comedic impulses of the “prince of laughter”, in a thriller adorned with comedy
In Totalmente Totò, one of the most compelling books recently published about the great Neapolitan actor, Alberto Anile writes: “Totò Diabolicus is an exercise in virtuosity. In some films the actor played three different parts, here he plays six. A murder mystery with a dash of horror thrown in. For want of a better word: a thriller. Totò Diabolicus opens with the discovery of Totò’s grinning corpse, and continues with a series of murders of characters usually played by the actor. It is a totally new kind of experience, while at the same time recalling the more macabre atmospheres the “Totò” character was accustomed to inhabiting in his youth. Revitalised by an injection of black comedy, Totò regains some of his sadistic nature that went largely unexplored in his cinema.”
Totò becomes six: a marquis is mysteriously murdered, and the guilty party could be one of his five siblings: a general, a surgeon, a baroness, a bishop, a convict. Who will it be?