Directed by Massimo Dallamano and starring Fabio Testi as Enrico; What Have you Done to Solange? is an Italian Giallo based around a very prestigious if formal girls school in London where their students are being murdered in very painful ways for young women.
A teacher at the school Enrico is having an early afternoon boat ride with one of his students, he is Italian after all, when she sees another young woman running and murdered. Enrico thinks she’s playing her usual games and almost convinces her she is until later that day he hears on the radio that a young girl has been murdered where they were having their sordid liaison.
Without giving to much away as this is supposed to be a mystery there is a nice twist halfway through involving what people have called the final girl of the film even though the final girl trope didn’t come to prominence until well over a decade later.
Given how boring and predictable final girls in horror have become this twist is very much welcomed and refreshing to see.
Filmed in English but by largely non-English speakers and then dubbed with varying quality afterwards like a lot of Italian films of the time did so it was easier to be sold overseas. What Have You Done to Solange? has that nice old Italian feel to the film.
It also has a lot of accents. Good thing it is set in London.
With the acting varying from excellent to cringe-worthy at times and a typically great score from the great Ennio Morricone to the improbable plot everything about this film is 70’s and it is great.
The Arrow release I watched has a fantastic transfer as they tend to do and is packed with extra content like an interview with lead actor Fabio Testi where he talks about how he started acting and his thoughts on why the Italian film industry declined like it did.
It also contains What Have You Done to Decency? A conversation with Karin Baal – the actress shares her thoughts on Dallamano’s classic giallo in this brand new interview
Old-School Producer – a newly-edited 2006 interview with producer Fulvio Lucisano
Innocence Lost: Solange and the “Schoolgirls in Peril” Trilogy – a brand new visual essay by Michael Mackenzie, exploring the themes of Solange and its two semi-sequels plus more.
If you’re a fan of Giallo then this is probably for you. A good watch that maybe starts a bit slow but with a nice twist about halfway through and a good sudden ending this is one I really would watch again.