Joe D’Amato – Eva nera aka Black Cobra Woman (1976)
One of the first of many ‘unofficial’ entries into the Emanuelle/Black Emanuelle series has Indonesian beauty Laura Gemser as ‘Eva’ [sadly not as Emanuelle…this is an ‘unofficial’ entry after all] who by chance works as an exotic dancer/snake-charmer in South East Asia. It seems as though her slithery night-club gyrations have caught the eagle-eye of middle-age loner Judas [Jack Palance], a wealthy businessman/entrepeneur who has a bizarre, though dedicated interest in collecting deadly snakes. He extends a [very wealthy] hand of ‘friendship’ toward eva Eva in return for companionship. However, Judas’ jealous brother ‘Jules’ [played by that other D’Amato veteran Gabriele Tinti] has also become smitten…hell, infatuated with the sexy snake-charmer [who could blame him?].
While not exactly, nor even officially, considered being the ‘best’ of the series, “Black Cobra” still features all the usual “Emanuelle”-style trademarks of exquisite cinematography, sleazy lounge-style score from composer Piero Umilliani [“Kiss Me Kill Me”]–sadly not from regular “Emanuelle” series composer Nico Fidenco–and a copious amount of on-screen nudity ranging from steamy lesbian sequences in the shower [making admirable use of the shower-nozzle as a ‘third party’], in bed and in an very suggestively-phallic sequence a masseuse-parlor. The only real downside, even though this movie doesn’t really require there being any, is the virtual lack of any Joe D’Amato-style gore or on-screen carnage.
Performance wise? Jack Palance is the more respectable actor out of the bunch, but his perfomance is a one-note phone-in…honestly, a cardboard cutout of Mr. Palance could have been wheeled out on the set by D’Amato and Company and nothing would have seemed out of place…for gods sakes man EMOTE! This however is countered by a half-way decent showing from Gabriele Tinti, whom I always thought could have been something more in cinema had he applied himself in other ventures besides following his then-wife Laura Gemser into nearly her entire filmography. Laura Gemser needs no introductions and I will leave it at that…