Giallo. It focuses more on atmosphere and mood then it does on gore and carnage. The creepy tone is more reminiscent of a gothic, haunted house movie or something that Mario Bava would have done then it is to later movies in the genre. Tho I didn't catch any windows "laughing" the doors and windows do seem to open and close on their own accord, which adds a sort of supernatural element to the movie. None of this is ever explained, which I find to be slightly annoying. I'm just gonna assume that the buildings in this movie were built on unlevel grounds and that is why these windows seem to have free will.
As the secrets unfold, we learn that Legnani was most interested in the dying. The only problem is that he wasn't waiting for his subjects to die of natural causes. Legnani had two sisters, who perhaps were more mentally unhinged then he was. They would abduct unwilling subjects, torture and kill them so Legnani could paint them. Pretty interesting plot going on in this one. The only problem is that there is way to much of the talky stuff and very little murder and mayhem. As I said this one relies much more on its atmosphere and story line.
It really is the ending that makes this whole thing worth while. It turns out that the local priest is actually a woman. While it may be the norm for a Italian Giallo to use the priest as a psychotic killer I have never seen the priest expose a melon heavy tit to the audience and start speaking in a woman's voice. Awesome!! Aside from the transsexual priest, House With Laughing Windows offers up three pretty violent stabbing scenes and all of them are shown in close up with all the gory detail. In another scene a man is thrown from a window and left with an achy-breaky skull on the pavement, We also get a relatively nasty rape scene where a cackling, church going psycho has his way with a unwilling victim who is wearing some of the largest underwear in cinematic history. I mean it! Her panties make those 60's Nudie Cuties underpants look like dental floss g-strings. Aside from that we get one or two off screen murders for the sake of plot but when it is all said and done the the violence in the movie is kept to a minimum.