Add a Review

  • andrabem8 September 2008
    "La corrupción de Chris Miller" is a difficult film to write about. It tells a story that has many layers. There's the straight story the film tells and there are many undercurrents that are left for the viewer to discern.

    Ruth (Jean Seberg) lives with her stepdaughter Chris (Marisol) in an isolated mansion in the countryside. Both of them wait for the same man. He was Ruth's husband and the father of Chris. One day, without warning, he left everything. They don't know where he's at. But Ruth and Chris have different feelings about him. Ruth wants to get even with him for what he has done to her, and for doing this she can use Chris, his daughter. Maybe she can corrupt her. But corruption is a vague word, what does it really mean? And Chris waits for her father as if he were the last hope left for her. A traumatic experience she had, has left its mark on her. Maybe her father is the only good thing left in the world...

    But it's difficult to classify the relationship between the two women. It's not a traditional love-hate relationship. The same man links them, but there's much more than that.

    Meanwhile a serial killer roams about the countryside. Mysterious murders are happening in the area.

    One day a drifter, come from nowhere, arrives in the house. As it happens, he (Barney) is engaged to work in the house for doing the odd jobs. His presence will change everything. Slowly a strange kind of threesome is developed - an atmosphere of suspicion, perplexity ... begins to grow. Who is he? What does he want from them? What do they want from him? Ruth and Chris and Barney? Outside, the murders go on happening.

    I won't say more because I don't want to spoil the film for you. "La corrupción de Chris Miller" is a refined psychological thriller. Jean Seberg is very good as Ruth, and Marisol's interpretation of Chris is powerful and emotional.

    If you like this one, check out also "El ojo del huracán" (In the eye of the hurricane) - it's seemingly a lighter type of thriller, but don't let yourself get fooled, because under the sun there is light and there are also shadows.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Angry young Chris Miller (sharply played by Marisol) and her equally bitter stepmother Ruth (a fine performance by Jean Seberg) live together in a lonely mansion located in the country. Complications ensue when mysterious drifter Barney Webster (a solid and likeable portrayal by the hunky Barry Stokes) shows up looking for shelter. Meanwhile, a sickle-wielding psycho bumps folks off in the area.

    Director Juan Antonio Bardem relates the complex and compelling story at a measured, yet steady pace, maintains a strong gloomy tone throughout, ably crafts a tense and uneasy atmosphere, and pulls out the exciting stops for a few bloody murder set pieces. Santiago Moncada's dark and daring script not only addresses the bleak themes of jealousy and revenge head on, but also delivers a few neat'n'nasty twists. Moreover, the remote rural setting projects a potently unsettling sense of isolation and vulnerability while the swanky house main location serves as a seething hotbed of repression and resentment. Both Juan Gelpi's sumptuous widescreen cinematography and Waldo de los Rios's lush orchestral score further enhance the excellent quality of this unjustly neglected little sleeper.
  • This early 70's mystery-thriller from Spain is a film that most genre fans have never heard of, let alone seen, and it's a shame.

    A repressed woman living in the Spanish countryside must deal with her disturbed stepdaughter but their world is about to become more troubled when a sexy drifter wonders into their lives. Will he create a void between the two and furthermore does this charming stranger have anything to do with the local family that just got butchered by an elusive killer?

    The Corruption of Chris Miller is one slippery thriller. Its wonderfully twisted plot always manages to catch the viewer off guard in every act with some truly surprising turns and revelations. Its one thoroughly well-written tale that's compelling from its sinister opening to its chilling final images. In addition the direction of Juan Antonio Bardem is stylishly done with some nice camera work and lovely filming locations. The lush music score is also a welcomed plus.

    One of the biggest highlights here is the cast. Star Jean Seberg is great as the revengeful Ruth, as is Marisol as the lonely and traumatized Chris. The gorgeous Barry Stokes is probably the best of the cast though as his likable, mysterious, and just possibly dangerous character. The supporting cast is solid as well.

    For those that take their thrillers seriously The Corruption of Chris Miller is a true lost gem. It has a touch of Hitchcock, a bit of Italian giallo, and even a foreshadowing of the slasher genre. In short it's a wild-card treat for genre fans. Obscure and difficult to find yes, but oh so worth being unearthed!

    *** 1/2 out of ****
  • This is one of the few entirely Spanish gialli and probably the only one that doesn't feature Spanish horror icon/werewolf Paul Naschy. It does have the doomed leftist American actress Jean Seaberg (a few years before she was driven to suicide by FBI harassment)and former Spanish child actress Marisol, all grown up here in all the right places. It has a very nasty murder committed by a guy dressed like Charlie Chaplin (I wonder what the late actor's estate thought of that?)and even more unbelievable scene where an entire family is wiped out by a mysterious figure in a rain slicker wielding a scythe. There is also a strange subplot where Chris Miller (the Marisol character) is traumatized by the sound of rain as the result of having been raped in a shower by a weight lifter (which would have made a great cameo for ex-weight lifter Naschy). Her stepmother (the Jean Seaberg character)is taking care of her but is also bent on "corrupting" her to get back at the girl's father for abandoning them (which might explain why she's relocated them to Spain where it seems to rain constantly).

    The weak link in the movie is British pretty-boy Barry Stokes (it should have been Ray Lovelock)playing a drifter who insinuates his way into the lives and the beds of the two women and who they begin to suspect might be the mysterious killer. Stokes gives pretty much the same performance as when he portrayed an emotionless alien in "Prey", he is not the least bit menacing or believable as a potential killer, and, to top it all off, he provides the film's only nudity by shoving his bare butt into the camera (oh boy!). On the other hand, the end is pretty satisfying with some nice ironic twists.

    This is by no means a perfect movie, but it certainly merits a DVD resurrection (the copy I saw looked like hell and may have been edited). It would probably be best to wait for that, but do check this one out if you like these kind of films.
  • I hate mimes, so I found the start of this film more disturbing when a guy dressed as Charlie Chaplin murders a nagging woman in a house, then continues to act like the silent film actor afterwards while moving the body, before inexplicably unmasking and running off into the night. The stuff of nightmares indeed.

    This killer is terrorizing the local countryside inhabited by neurotic girl Chris Miller, who gets really upset every time it rains, and her stepmother Ruth. Both seem to be waiting for Chris's dad to return home, and seemingly spend their days languishing around the place, arguing and what not. Chris especially seems to get really upset at night, having flashbacks to a ballet class (with a weightlifter nearby) and then stabbing the nearest object she can find. Ruth does her best to calm Chris, even if her methods seem a little too familiar...

    One day, annoying hippy drifter Baz or whatever turns up, giving Ruth a full frontal in the barn and then generally trying to charm the pants of her...which works! Chris at first seems a little jealous of this set up, but then when Ruth actively encourages Baz to put the moves on Chris, things don't quite add up and not everyone is as innocent as they appear to be...but is one of them the murderer, who has just carved up five people in one house with a scythe?

    For a film with three main characters and not a whole lot of side characters to last almost two hours is a bit of an endurance test. There's almost an hour between the first murder and the slaughter of the family, and in between there we get to see the tension between Chris and her stepmother, the hippy guy making eggs, playing acoustic guitar, and bedding Ruth, and find out exactly what happened to Chris's dad and why Ruth seems determined to 'corrupt' Chris. It even goes some way to explain why Ruth lives in a place where it rains so much even though Chris goes nuts every time it does. But come on... At least there's a few mental things that happen later to keep you awake, like a brutal knife murder and a corpse being found due to peas growing from the body and cracking tarmac (and if you've grown peas, you'll know the plants can barely stand up on their own, never mind cracking tarmac!). This is a bit of an obscure one, and for those with plenty of patience. Of course, the bad copy I watched didn't help, as it rendered quite a lot of the dark scenes unwatchable.
  • The Spanish board of censorship certainly ruined the infinite possibilities of this film. Just think of what it would have looked like if it had been made in Italy, France or Germany, or even in Spain once democracy was restored and censorship abolished: the lesbian pseudo-relationship between Ruth and Chris, the wild eroticism exuded by Barney, the hot scenes with the guy seducing both women by turns, and the gore of the serial killings in the background. Director J.A.Bardem had no choice but to keep the sex and gory elements within the limits imposed by the censors, and that is the reason why this film looks so tame and decaffeinated. Still, it manages to look interesting and keeps a decent degree of suspense. I first saw it when I was 12 or 13, and the multiple murder sequence scared the s*** out of me: the thunderstorm night, the lonely farmhouse, the killer in a black hooded raincoat, the ominous music... Seeing it now in my 40s it looks anything but scary, but when you are a kid... I now was able to watch the English-speaking version, which has a different ending than the Spanish version, and the film sounds a lot better. In the Spanish version the dubbing of Jean Seberg and Barry Stokes is lame, while in the English version the Spanish actress Marisol speaks her lines in perfect English with her real voice, no dubbing involved. Great settings, locations, camera-work, music and an interesting story. Like I said before: if only Bardem had had complete freedom to exploit the story's full potential... A real shame. That is why I am giving it only 7 points.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    According to David Richards' biography of Jean Seberg, she did this film because she needed the money. Well, it's obvious she didn't do it for the script of this convoluted Spanish thriller.

    Seberg plays Ruth Miller, a fashion designer, spending the summer in Spain with her stepdaughter Chris, played by the former Spanish child star Marisol. Ruth and Chris do not get along particularly well. Ruth wants to get revenge on her husband, who abandoned Ruth and Chris a year earlier, by corrupting his daughter - hence the film's title. Chris has also just returned from a Swiss hospital where she received psychological treatment after being raped while taking a shower. These memories are triggered whenever it rains and she lashes out at anyone near her. It rains a lot in this movie. Into this situation comes a young English drifter, Barney, played by Barry Stokes. Ruth takes him in but he ends up falling for Chris. This causes even more tension between the two women. In the meantime, a series of brutal murders have occurred in the surrounding countryside. All indications point to Barney as the murderer. Ruth and Chris seem to think so and they stab him to death in a particularly graphic and protracted scene complete with slow-motion photography. Realizing their mistake when the real murderer is arrested the next day, they bury his body in the path of a road being built. I won't identify the real murderer except to say that the ending is completely arbitrary. The final scene of the film with Ruth and Chris chatting intimately by the pool is quite bizarre - I'm not exactly sure what is really happening there.

    As usual with her later work, this film is of note only for the presence of Jean Seberg. The direction and photography are routine although some flashback scenes are well handled. The score does contribute to the mood of the film. Among the performers, Barry Stokes is very effective, Marisol is quite acceptable and Jean Seberg simply seems embarrassed by the whole thing. She is never really convincing and seems particularly uncomfortable with the less than subtle implication of a lesbian relationship between Ruth and Chris.

    This film shares a strange number of plot points with the earlier British film "The Night Digger": both feature an unhappy relationship between a stepmother and stepdaughter, a young drifter who enters into this relationship and victims being buried in the path of a new road. Just a coincidence?
  • The Corruption of Chris Miller is often labelled as a Giallo; this is not really the case, although the film does feature some of the trademarks of the genre amongst its multilayered plot. I'd say it falls somewhere between a murder thriller and a psychological drama; and the two main plot lines represent both genres. The film reminded me a lot of René Clément's masterpiece Joy House in the way that the relationship between the three central characters works. The film begins with a grisly murder, committed by someone dressed as Charlie Chaplin. From there, we move on to a house inhabited by two women, a mother and a stepdaughter; who is scared of the rain as she was raped in the shower by a bodybuilder when she was a child. The mother later finds a drifter taking a nap in the barn, and after some convincing, agrees to take the stranger on to do odd jobs for them in return for free board. However, it's not long before the man's presence makes tensions rise among the mother and daughter; and the murders in town are continuing.

    The film does not make murder its central plot line, and there's not a lot of blood either. The main plot is the relationship between the mother, stepdaughter and the mysterious drifter, and this takes up the majority of the film. The three way relationship is not disinteresting, although it has to be said that it's a bit long winded and spoiled by some less than brilliant performances. Chief among them is Barry Stokes; who is extremely wooden. Jean Seberg and Marisol so-star and are better, though none of the actors particularly impress. Director Juan Antonio Bardem does succeed, however, in creating a foreboding atmosphere; the countryside setting creates a feeling of isolation and this bodes well with the plot line. The film really does pick up in the final third and the ending is strong, as well as wrapping things up nicely. Overall, while this film is not a Giallo; it will certainly be of interest to Giallo fans and is well worth tracking down.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Two lovely woman, a stepmother (the iconic Jean Seberg) and a stepdaughter (Marisol), are at odds with each other in a lovely mansion in the Spanish countryside. The husband / father disappeared seven years ago, not to be heard from since, and apparently he was a real piece of work. Then another man comes between them: a charismatic drifter named Barney (Barry Stokes). And he arouses passions in both of them. Meanwhile, it's possible that this stranger who's entered their lives might just be the psycho who's been offing locals for a long time.

    It's true that there are interesting layers to this entertainingly sordid, fairly exploitative drama. Some people refer to it as a Spanish Giallo, but in truth it's more of a character study, and the murder mystery elements only start to pay off towards the end. Soon Ruth (Seberg) and the titular Chris (Marisol) are revealing another aspect to their relationship, one that will be sure to satisfy fans of Eurotrash.

    Overall, the package is slick and stylish, and the picture offers eye candy of both the human and the scenic variety. It's an exceptionally good looking film, well shot in widescreen. It runs close to two hours, but never gets boring. Like many stories that utilize a mystery aspect, it's effective the way that it holds off on giving you essential information until near the end. Granted, the identity of the psycho comes as no great surprise, but "The Corruption of Chris Miller" knows how to sink its hooks into its intended audience, and it amuses and thrills all the way to the end.

    The performances are quite engrossing, although Seberg comes off better than her younger counterpart. As the stud who becomes between them, Stokes is amiable. Perla Cristal, Rudy Gaebel, and Gerard Tichy (an actor you'll often find in Spanish exploitation and horror films of the period) round out a good cast.

    Director Juan Antonio Bardem, who appears on screen as Pedro (and who was the uncle of Javier Bardem), does know how to get your attention right away, as a young woman is killed by her lover, who is in a Charlie Chaplin costume at the time.

    Quite gory, and pretty sexy, "The Corruption of Chris Miller" offers nuances that keep it from being easily classifiable.

    Eight out of 10.
  • Watched this on Tubu Tv. This film is a great mystery about two women living in a large creepy house in the middle of the country. Meanwhile, someone is going around killing people in the town near to where they live. One night, a handsome young man shows up at their door and the two women slowly start to suspect him of being the killer. Are they correct? This film has a beautiful cast, interesting performances, lesbian undertones, a very creepy killer and is ultimately a fun and unpredictable watch. Enjoy it.
  • Having been left by their husband and father , a disturbed wife : Jean Seberg and deranged stepdaughter : Marisol hire a drifter handyman : Barry Stokes at their secluded state. While six brutal murders terrorize the town . As a series of killings committed by a psycho murderer starts horrifying the villagers and things go wrong . See it with rains it pours ... blood!. See it with someone you can hold onto!

    A thrilling and suspenseful movie about a lurid subject matter concerning two women trapped alone in a locked house and along the way a psychopathic killer is on the loose . Dealing with the peculiar and complex relationships among three main characters played by the French Jean Seberg , the Spanish Marisol and British Barry Stokes . Interesting and twisted screenplay by Santiago Moncada, a prolific and prestigious writer who wrote several stories in all kinds of genres during the 60s, 70s and 80s . Stars Jean Seberg who provides a solid and sensitive acting as the unsettling abandoned wife and the ex- prodigy girl Marisol who is pretty well as the tramautized daughter long time ago suffered a terrible event, while Barry Stokes is nice as as the hunky and suspicious drifter . And a good support cast with some familiar Spanish faces, such as : Perla Cristal, Gerard Tichy , Mariano Vidal Molina , Gustavo Re, Goyo Lebrero, Rafael Luis Calvo and director Juan Antonio Bardem himself.

    It contains an intriguing and frightening musical score by the prestigious composer Waldo de Los Ríos who soon after , unfourtunately , committed suicide . Atmospheric musical score by Juan Gelpi, though an adequate remastering being really necessary because of the film copy is washed-out. Being completely shot on location in Comillas, Cantabria, Spain. The picture was competently directed by Juan Antonio Bardem . This director was a good and notorious filmmaker , being his film debut : Esa pareja feliz 1951 co-directed by Luis Garcia Berlanga , after that , he made Cómicos 1953 about stage world , following an enjoyable comedy : Felices Pascuas 1954 . And eventually shooting his big hit : Muerte de un ciclista 1955 . And of course , his another big success : Calle Mayor with Betsy Blair. Some years later, he made this La Corrupcion de Chris Miller that has a rating 6.5/10. Better than average Gialli film. The flick will appeal to Jean Seberg and Marisol fans.
  • The Corruption of Chris Miller was a hard one to come by for many years, which gave it a mysterious street cred that was impossible to live up to. It's part melodrama and part giallo without really mixing them very well. Besides a splattery opening and a random series of killings right before the final act, it's not much of a traditional giallo or murder mystery and mostly focuses on a woman and her stepdaughter who are charmed by a mysterious drifter who may or may not be a killer who's been going around terrorizing people.

    The film is slow as molasses for most of its runtime and you want to tell out "hurry up and get to the good stuff!" I'm normally a person who can enjoy a nice slow burn movie with the rest of them, but there's slow and then there's plotless. Most of the film is just a series of longing glances between the characters or long montages or horseback riding. They seem to be trying to build the tension between stepmother, stepdaughter, and the handsome drifter, but the script never really handles those moments very well. With better dialogue, perhaps those scenes would crackle with sexual tension.

    The film is most definitely well shot and the scenes that take place during rainstorms drip with mood, but right as the film starts to get interesting, it ends with no resolution whatsoever. I'm also not a stickler for an ending that's tied up in a neat little bow, but after all that build up, it would have been nice if we were given something a little more interesting.
  • BandSAboutMovies17 February 2020
    Warning: Spoilers
    Chris Miller (former Spanish child star Marisol; when she married dancer Antonio Gades, Fidel Castro acted as their godfather) lives with her stepmother Ruth (Jean Seberg, the haunted and doomed beauty who was also in Breathless and Saint Joan). The loss of Chris' father has damaged both of them, so when a drifter named Barney (Barry Stokes, Prey) shows up, it changes their lives. Maybe not for the better, what with a killer slicing his way through the village...

    This Spanish giallo was directed by Juan Antonio Bardem (yes, the uncle of Javier) who also made Death of a Cyclist and wrote A Bell From Hell. It was written by Santiago Moncada, who was also the pen behind Hatchet for the Honeymoon, Ricco and The Fourth Victim.

    Ruth blames Chris for her husband leaving, so she uses Barney to seduce her stepdaughter, who is recovering from the dual loss of her father and being assaulted at school. Her plan? When daddy comes home, he won't love his daughter much any longer because she's no longer a virgin. Meanwhile, the killer keeps on killing, including a scene where he dresses like Charlie Chaplin.

    Also released as Behind the Shutters, this movie is also a proto-slasher, rife with bloody murders, including a moment when the rain slicker covered villain kills an entire family in slow motion.