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Trauma

Christopher Rydell , Asia Argento , Dario Argento    R (Restricted)   DVD

Price: CDN$ 68.37
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Amazon.com: 3.3 out of 5 stars  33 reviews
24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars !!! Aug. 22 2005
By MetalMan#1 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
Why are there reviews for this release that date 3 friggin years ago?? This is a totally different release with the uncut footage, widescreen transfer, extras whatever. If you like Argento get this, you won't be disappointed it is good whether or not it's his best. Don't listen to people that haven't even watched this cut of the film.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Argento's best by any means, but not awful. Feb. 7 2006
By Robert Beveridge - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
Trauma (Dario Argento, 1993)

Dario Argento has been making stylish, intelligent thrillers for four decades now. As is to be expected with a director who has close to twenty films in the can, his output has been a little inconsistent over the years. Trauma is on the up side of things, but it's not one of his best efforts.

David Parsons (For the Boys' Christopher Rydell) is an ex-junkie working as an artist for the local TV station. On his way home from work one night, he sees Aura Petrescu (Asia Argento of xXx and b.Monkey) getting ready to jump off a bridge. He stops her and convinces her to go for coffee with him. This does not work well, and she is accosted after running away from him. She is taken back home to her parents, spiritualists Adriana (Carrie's Piper Laurie) and Stefan (L'Ange's Dominique Serrand) after begging her accosters not to take her back to the Faraday Clinic, from which she had escaped just before the suicide attempt. On her first night home, however, not only do her parents call the clinic's head, Dr. Judd (Frederic Forrest, of Hammett fame), but during a séance, a series of confusing events occurs that leads to Adriana and Stefan's death. With nowhere else to turn, Aura goes back to David, and the two of them try to figure out who the killer is before he gets to Aura.

While the cinematography is pure Argento, much of the rest of the atmospheric trappings that make Argento films so wonderful are missing; most notably, the music is nowhere near the quality Argento got when working with Goblin. But a thriller doesn't have to be an Argento film to be good. How's the rest of it? The acting is a mixed bag; Frederic Forrest, especially, is painfully bad, the polar opposite of the brilliant, engaging actor who made Hammett such a treat. Piper Laurie reprises here Carrie role well, and while Argento's acting is not on par with movies she would make later in her career, she's acceptable. Brad Dourif also scores a role that's little more than a cameo, but he milks it for what it's worth. The plot can be a bit on the confusing side if you're not paying close enough attention, so be warned, but it does all come together in the end.

What will most disappoint diehard Argento fans, likely, is the almost complete lack of gore. Blame Argento's having made this film in America. He does get away with a decent amount, but it's a far cry from Profondo Rosso or even Non Ho Sonno.

All that said, I rather liked it; certainly more than I expected to, given the generally negative views of the film one finds in various places on the net. It'll probably be enjoyed more by those who aren't already students of Argento than those who are. ***
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining Dec 30 2005
By babydollwitch - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
While not his best work of course, I enjoyed this film. I am an Asia fan and she did a good job here. It's different than his previous work of course, but it really kept my interest and was entertaining. It's worth a watch.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Below Par Argento, But Still Worth a Watch Feb. 9 2007
By Shaun Anderson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
Throughout the 1990's the output of Italian horror specialist Dario Argento began to increasingly look as though it was tailored for his daughter Asia. This tailoring also coincided with a general downturn in both quality and inspiration. The three films he made with Asia "Trauma", "The Stendahl Syndrome" and "Phantom of the Opera" are all quite notable for an unusually dour and drab visual quality. Argento regularly took liberty with his narratives, but even by Argento standards this trilogy of below par films are riddled with absurd contradictions and discontinuities. Of the three I prefer "Trauma", simply because like "Opera" before, it is based on a very good method of murder and is aided by some notable actors. Like most post 1980 horror films it is basically a series of set pieces connected by a gossamer thread of narrative, in this case a lot of nonsense involving dead children and vengeful mothers. Unlike other Argento efforts the culprit of much decapitating chaos is screamingly obvious, and the whole thing unravels into a rather a soppy love story. Asia Argento is given much material to work with; anorexia, a psychopathic mother and suicidal tendencies, she does little of note with this potentially intriguing material and neither does Dario. The usual bag of tricks are present (subjective camera angles - even from the P.O.V of a butterfly!! And well executed death scenes), but at this point in Argento's career one can't help thinking he'd lost the plot a bit.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as bad as they say... Jan. 18 2006
By R. Rodriguez - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
This Dario Argento movie is not as bad as people say it is. But it's definately not his best film. I think the main reason is the acting. Asia Argento and Piper Laurie are pretty bad in this film. Asia's english wasn't as good as it is now and she seems to mumble her lines which can get pretty annoying at times. Piper Laurie seems to try to capture her amazing performance as the "crazy" mother in the classic "Carrie" film, but she fails. She's just so over the top and it hurts the film. But I'm glad Anchor Bay finally released the Uncut version of this film. The VHS version had a lot of the gore created by the great Tom Savini edited out. I give 3 1/2 stars for the film and 4 for this DVD release. And by the way, "The Stendthal Syndrome" & "Sleepless" aren't bad movies. I think "Sleepless" was his best film since "Suspiria" but the horrible American Pan/Scan release of this film just butchers the film!

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