Blu-Ray * The Bird With The Crystal Plumage * American journalist Sam Dalmas ( Tony Musante ), falls witness to something rather peculiar during a nighttime stroll through the streets of Rome - a gruesome murder attempt. As Dalmas rushes toward an art gallery to offer aid, he simultaneously becomes trapped inside the glass entrance foyer to the gallery as well as trapped within writer/director Dario ArgentoŴ�s ( Suspiria, Tenebre ) shell game approach to horror/suspense script writing. Only able to watch - a man dressed in black, wearing black leather gloves, is seemingly interrupted from stabbing a girl - DalmasŴ� presence breaks up the attack and the mystery man exits through a back door as the girl, dripping blood, falls to the ground and crawls across the floor to her eventual collapse.

Dalmas becomes, unjustly, the prime suspect as the pendulum of ArgentoŴ�s sadistic metronome quickly finds the protagonist as both suspect and as a man now playing detective. As time stabs forward, Dalmas has slashing flashbacks of what he witnessed, yet he begins to feel visually violated and starts to see that something doesnŴ�t appear quite right. This insight leads him on a wild goose chase of sorts that starts with learning that other woman have recently been attacked and then, like clock-work, leads Dalmas to an odd painting of a woman in a field being attacked by a killer with a knife that looks strikingly similar to the man Dalmas saw in the gallery. This painting, which Dalmas discovers is somehow directly related to the killer, becomes a guiding map as he sees through with his investigation.

Dalmas life is constantly in danger as he himself becomes the target of murder yet he eventually solves the mystery using evidence centered around Ŵ�a certain bird with rare tail feathers.Ŵ�ArgentoŴ�s ability to creatively engaged the audience is nothing short of brilliant. Always eluding to the fact that what one sees with their own eyes is not necessarily the truth, Argento visually contrasts perspective and sight against trickery. Pushing these concepts onto the viewer, Argento at one point shows the killer - in an attempt to murder DalmasŴ� girlfriend, Julia ( Suzy Kendall ) - carving a hole in DalmasŴ� apartment door with his knife, peering through the hole, instantly reversing total perspective as the viewer and/or characters in the film ( who have been watching the killer ) are now the ones being watched.

The Bird With The Crystal Plumage is an amazing and surprising exercise in shaking hands with Dario Argento and realizing that his hand is a fist, attached to a fake arm, that already swung out, hit you and became hidden behind his back way before you ever reached out to haphazardly greet him. // Review by David Paul Wyatt Perko, Surveil Magazine