Whilst on a flight an abstract artist Prince Tancredi gets to know one of the air hostess’s on the plane, the young woman who’s name is Judy. He then asks her to pose for him which she agrees to do. But Judy whilst at the artists studio makes a number of negative remarks about his work, these cutting criticisms lead the artist to begin to question his own work. Judy leaves promising that she will meet with Tancredi which she eventually does. The couple are attracted to each other and enter into a passionate love affair. But things do not go smoothly, and Judy walks out on her lover, Tancredi is crushed by her leaving, but returns to finish her portrait deciding to give it the justice her beauty so richly deserves. He goes in search of Judy to make her aware of the portrait but discovers that she was killed in a car crash on the day that she left him. But the accident happened on her way back to him, because she realised that she truly loved him.
Released in 1968 LO TIO AMO was directed by well known Italian film maker Antonio Margheriti, and although not a huge success at the box office the film was a fairly appealing and well-made piece of cinema. Composer Carlo Savina provided the soundtrack and created a score that was a collection of laid back, lounge type compositions. The veteran composer/conductor utilising solo guitar, jazz infused passages, sultry clarinet, solo violin. organ and light and airy unassuming strings to fashion a romantic yet tragic sounding work. In many ways the central theme evokes a style that we would normally associate with fellow Italian Maestro Stelvio Cipriani, the use of a lilting piano led theme being the foundation of the score, on which Savina builds adding little nuances throughout that are easy listening flavoured but at the same time contain a luxurious and fully romantic sound. Its not a grand score or one that will necessarily stand out amongst the composer’s other works for cinema, but its worth checking out.
As is another Italian score by Savina, from the 1968 comedy LA SCUOLA DELLA VERGINI, this time the composer produced a more up tempo and certainly more pop orientated sounding work although saying this there were a few cues that had to them a more relaxed and romantic sound, some even having a distinct Yiddish style with solo violin taking centre stage. But for the majority of its duration the composer purveyed a style and a sound that was predominantly up-beat and pop driven. With guitar, bass guitar and percussion forming the line up on most of the cues, I suppose its one of those groovy sounding soundtracks from the latter part of the 1960.s that was a fusion between symphonic as in strings, and also a big band more hip sound, that we do tend to associate with the decade of the swinging sixties, Hammond organ to features in many of the tracks and the composer employs a nice jazz piano solo at certain points and a scattering of harpsichord. Overall, it’s not a bad listen.
But wait theres more, and yes its Savina again, THE KILLER RESERVED NINE SEATS (1974), is a tense thriller murder mystery, a group of friends are invited to visit a mutual friends villa and are shown a theatre there, after a while sinister and strange things begin to happen, but the group of friends then realise they are trapped in the villa, and a killer begins t pick them off one by one.
Again Savina manages to combine thematic material with dramatic or apprehensive styles, and fuses them together to create an effecting score, This is an entertaining listen, the composer utilising breathy sounding woods, haunting delicate harpsichord, and subdued percussive elements that are embellished by strings and punctuated and mirrored by harpsichord, plus there is also effective use of Sitar combined with percussion, Savina not only relays a sense of urgency and of apprehension within the score, but he also creates some beautiful simply thematic material, via organ, solo guitar and piano, again if you are passionate about Italian soundtracks this is a perfect addition to your collection. Recommended.