This hilarious Italian slasher film (also known as Mil gritos tiene la noche, Rompecabezas and One Thousand Cries Has the Night) has become a tough one to find. Out of print on video, it's still collecting dust on some rental store shelves. Some web sites are also selling bootleg copies.
It's not surprising that there's still a demand for "Pieces." It's a very funny piece of incredible garbage. The film opens with a boy chopping up his mother after she punishes him for building a puzzle of a pin-up girl. Of course he grows up to be a serial killer, who naturally stalks students at a local university.
Badly dubbed, with incredibly cheesy opening titles that look like they were for a student film, "Pieces" manages to deliver plenty of unintentional laughs. It boasts one of the funniest "accidentally bumped into my friend" fake shock scenes ever filmed. This Italian-Spanish film also features plenty of cheesy gore effects, which were sick enough to garner the film an X rating. But the effects were so phony, I'm surprised the MPAA wouldn't have just rated it R.
It's hard to pick what the most laughable scene is, but it could it be where a suspect of the murders opens the door to be attacked suddenly by two cops and a student who just happened to be carrying a large board to whack him with. One of the investigators sent to go undervcover is a tennis champ who happens to have an office job in a police station. Eh? In one of the wackiest moments, the killer walks into an elevator to stalk one of his female victims with a chainsaw hidden behind his back! "What are you doing?" she asks when he pulls it out and revs up the motor. But possibly the mostly memorable scene has the tennis star suddenly attacked by a Bruce Lee look-a-like doing kung fu maneuvers in the middle of the night. "Hey, it's my kung fu professor," a student explains to the lady cop, after she beats him up.
This is one dumb movie. A definite thumbs up. I still remember the marketing campaign for this film in the early 1980s. TV ads preceded a theatrical release, followed weeks later with the pic being unleashed on video. I suppose it made a lot of money.
A piece of real horror sleaze, "Pieces" is the kind of pic they don't make anymore, perhaps because the world's become too sophisticated. George wound up starring in a lot of foreign turkeys like this in the early 1980s. His other accomplishments included Lucio Fulci's "Gates of Hell" and the extremely sleazy "Death Wish" rip-off, "The Exterminator."