Antefatto (1971)

75m (France), 76m (UK; Italy – cut version), 80m 35s (UK – on Redemption), 80m 54s (UK – on Hokushin), 82m (Germany), 90m (Italy)
35mm, Technicolor, 1.85:1
mono, English

An Italian horror film directed by Mario Bava. It proved influential on Friday the 13th (1980) and its sequels and on the American slasher movies of the 1980s onward in general. In the UK it joined the “” list in the 1980s.

Plot Summary

When an ageing heiress is murdered by her greedy husband out to get her money, it leads to a whole series of increasingly brutal killings. Relatives and family friends descend on the woman's house with their own agendas, most of which involve the wholesale slaughter of their rivals.


* = uncredited

Directed by: Mario Bava
no copyright was originally given but on versions released on DVD after 2001, an opening card claims the copyright as © 2001 International Media Films
International Media Films presents [only on DVD releases post-2001]
Produced by: Giuseppe Zaccariello
Screenplay by: Mario Bava, Joseph McLee [real name: Giuseppe Zaccariello], Filippo Ottoni, Sergio Canevari *, Francesco Vanorio *
From a Story by: Dardano Sacchetti and Franco Barberi
Director of Photography: Mario Bava
Editor: Carlo Reali
Music by: Stelvio Cipriani
Sound: Carlo Tarchi [not credited on Bay of Blood version]
Costume Designer: Enrico Sabbatini [not credited on Bay of Blood version]
Make-up: Franco Freda [not credited on Bay of Blood version]
Hairstylist: Adalgisa Favella [not credited on Bay of Blood version]
Special Effects: Carlo Rambaldi [not credited on Bay of Blood version]
Art Director: Sergio Canevari

Claudine Auger [Renata]
Luigi Pistilli [Alberto (Albert on English language prints)]
Claudio Volonte' [Simone (Simon on English language prints)]
Anna M. Rosati [Laura)
Chris Avram [Franco Ventura (Frank Ventura on English language prints)]
Leopoldo Trieste [Paolo Foscarri]
Laura Betti [Anna Foscarri)
Brigitte Skay [Louise (Brunhilda on English language prints)]
Isa Miranda [Countess Federica Donati]
Paola Rubens [Sylvie (Denise on English language prints)]
Guido Boccaccini [Roberto (Robert on English language prints)]
Roberto Bonanni (Luca (Mike on English language prints)]
Giovanni Nuvoletti [Count Filip Donati)
Renato Cestie [little boy] *
Nicoletta Elmi [little girl] *

Alternative Titles

The Antecedent
Bahia de Sangre – Spanish title
Baia Sangrenta – Portugese title
La Baie sanglante – French and Belgian title
A Bay of Blood – USA title
The Bay of Silver
Before the Fact – Ecology of a Crime
Den Blodige Bugt
– Danish title
Bloodbath – UK video title
Bloodbath Bay of Blood
Bloodbath Bay of Death
– UK title
Così imparano a farsi e cattivi
Ecologia del delitto
– alternative title
Im Blutrausch des Satans – West German title
Last House on the Left Part II – USA re-release title
Last House – Part II
New House on the Left
Odore di carne
– pre-production title
Reazione a catena
Reazione a catena (Ecologia del delitto)
Twitch of the Death Nerve
– US title

See also
The Burning (1981)
Friday the 13th (1980)
Friday the 13th Part 2 (1981)
Friday the 13th Part III (1982)
Halloween (1978)
Halloween II (1981)
The Last House on the Left (1972)
L'ultimo treno della notte (1974)

Extracts included in
78/52 (2017)
Don't Scream It's Only a Movie (1989)
Mad Ron's Prevues from Hell (1987)


Cinefantastique vol.4 no.3 (Autumn 1975) p.36 – review
European Trash Cinema vol.2 no.6 pp.10-11 – review
Halls of Horror no.27 p.16 – note
Is It Uncut? no.5 p.35 – review
Monthly Film Bulletin vol.47 no.556 (May 1980) p.88 – credits, review
Positif no.138 (May 1972) pp.38-48 – interview with Mario Bava
Rue Morgue no.196 (September/October 2020) pp.12-22 – illustrated interview with Dardano Sacchetti (Legacy of blood by Robert Freese)
Sight & Sound vol.4 no.5 (May 1994) p.66 – video review
Starburst no.66 pp.40-41 – review
Variety 17 March 1971 p.36 – note
Variety 27 October 1971 p.26 – credits, review
Video Watchdog no.32 pp.10-11 – review
Video Watchdog no.58 (April 2000) pp.44-45 – review (by Tim Lucas)
Video Week 5 January 1987 p.8 – note

The Aurum Film Encyclopedia: Horror by Phil Hardy (ed.) p.233 – credits, review
Blood and Black Lace by Adrian Luther-Smith pp.3, 6 – illustrated credits, synopsis, review
Euro Gothic: Classics of Continental Horror Cinema by Jonathan Rigby pp.239, 240, 241, 255, 338
The Haunted World of Mario Bava by Troy Howarth pp.240-247; 342 – illustrated review; credits
Hoffman's Guide to SF, Horror and Fantasy Movies 1991-1992 p.117 – credits, review
Horror and Science Fiction Films II by Donald C. Willis p.407
Mario Bava: All the Colors of the Dark by Tim Lucas pp.847-869 – illustrated review, synopsis, production notes, credits
by Walt Lee p.56 – credits
The Seduction of the Gullible (2nd edition) by John Martin p.29 – illustrated credits, synopsis, review