Part soft-core porn. Part giallo. All boring.
The Sister of Ursula centers on two sisters, Dagmar and Ursula. As the film opens, they're checking into a luxury hotel on the Italian coast. Ursula begs Dagmar to leave, claiming visions of a horrible future. With heavy sighs, Dagmar dismisses Ursula's pleadings. Ursula pouts. Instead of establishing a forbidding atmosphere, the scene left me cold to Ursula's petulant behavior.
Dagmar convinces Ursula to accompany her to the hotel nightclub. There we meet the supporting players: the hotel manager, a sultry nightclub singer, and a pretty-boy gigolo. Dagmar feels a connection to the gigolo, but Ursula insists he's dangerous. More sighs and dismissals from Dagmar.
As the film goes on, a pattern emerges. The script introduces either a character who has sex with a supporting player or a pair of characters who have sex with each other. A mysterious black-gloved figure watches the copulating couple from the shadows. After some late-night-cable-grade soft-core erotica, the black-gloved figure kills one or both of the lovers. Aside from a slashed throat, the violence occurs off-screen.
The script offers few red herrings. Instead, it doles out assorted subplots including the sisters' search for their estranged mother, the hotel manager's struggles with his estranged wife, and the gigolo's drug habit.
None of these threads held my interest. But the film's reputation as a sleazy giallo had me certain it would veer into crazy territory.
It proved a long wait. During the finale, after an unsurprising reveal of the killer's identity, we see the murder weapon. Spoiler—it's a giant phallus. Seeing the killer advance, phallus in hand, was just the sort of crazy I'd been expecting. But this scene doesn't justify the hour-and-a-half investment. I've said it before, but it bears repeating. I can forgive a movie many things. Bad acting? Specious plotting? Gratuitous nudity? I can overlook them all. But I can't forgive boring.