Now On Patreon: INFERNO (1980) Review

Did you know I have a Patreon that helps support me and my writing? Patrons at the $10 and above levels get exclusive writing. This week they got a review of Dario Argento’s Inferno,which I’ve excerpted below. If you want to read the whole thing, become a patron at www.patreon.com/cinemasangha!

This does contain spoilers for Inferno.

Almost no one in the US has seen Dario Argento’s Inferno on the big screen, and that is a crime. The sequel to Suspiria, one of Argento’s defining films, Inferno fell between the cracks during a studio restructuring and was released straight to video, getting only a short New York City theatrical run. But Inferno is very much a big screen movie, and I don’t just mean that in terms of visuals; the film plays best when it envelops you in its dream logic, when you’re away from your couch and forced to sink into its surreal and sometimes nonsensical moments. Inferno isn’t just a movie with scary scenes, Inferno is a movie that shows us the world as inherently twisted, skewed and frightening, a place that cannot be understood. The horror here is often exquisitely existential.

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SUSPIRIA 2018: Death To Duality

This contains spoilers!

To remake Dario Argento’s Suspiria is an act of madness. The original is as much defined by its visuals and its soundtrack as its plot or characters; in fact, as is the case with some of the great Italian master’s films, it’s the filmmaking that makes 1977’s Suspiria as consequential as it is. What’s the point of remaking a movie that so fully is marked by its creator, that is so much the product of one mind, one filmmaking industry, of one time?

The point, Luca Guadagnino contends, is to do the same again – to make a movie whose filmmaking is as consequential as its plot, whose style is as important as its characters, whose soundtrack is a living part of the whole, and whose style is absolutely unique and specific to its new director. Guadagnino’s remake of Suspiria is a masterwork on its own, but it’s also one that approaches Argento’s movie – and his entire Three Mothers mythology – with just the right mixture of reverence and revisionism. I love the 1977 Suspiria, and I love the 2018 version as well, in its own way.

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