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Suspiria (Widescreen) (Bilingual) [Import]
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Outside of devoted cult audiences, many Americans have yet to discover the extremely stylish, relentlessly terrifying Italian horror genre, or the films of its talented virtuoso, Dario Argento. Suspiria, part one of a still-uncompleted trilogy (the luminously empty Inferno was the second), is considered his masterpiece by Argento devotees but also doubles as a perfect starting point for those unfamiliar with the director or his genre. The convoluted plot follows an American dancer (Jessica Harper) from her arrival at a European ballet school to her discovery that it's actually a witches coven; but, really, don't worry about that too much. Argento makes narrative subservient to technique, preferring instead to assault the senses and nervous system with mood, atmosphere, illusory gore, garish set production, a menacing camera, and perhaps the creepiest score ever created for a movie. It's essentially a series of effectively unsettling set pieces--a raging storm that Harper should have taken for an omen, and a blind man attacked by his own dog are just two examples--strung together on a skeleton structure. But once you've seen it, you'll never forget it. --Dave McCoy --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Other than that, this hallucinatory and dreamlike film is quite cool, but definitely not for everyone. Mainstream audiences (don't expect anything resembling "Scream") will probably be put off by glaring displays of illogic and a lack of concrete explanations for everything that transpires in the film. What you can expect is a trippy rollercoaster ride through a colorful funhouse of various shocks.
The plot surrounds an American dancer who attends a European ballet school only to find out that it seems to be a witch's coven. However by the time Argento gets around to the point I had lost intrest in the film. Dario Argento has long been respected by horror fans for his movie making and directing. This reviewer can't understand why people fimd this man so good. Dario Argento is not the worst director (That honor goes to the Italian director Lucio Fulci, see Zombie review) but he makes a strong case at times. This is a slow moving movie that show's that with enough stage blood and FX anyone can be considered brilliant. Some of Argento's film have not been as bad like Phenomena, however his debut with The Bird With the Crystal Plumage shows that he may just be good at thowing blood around. A real good friend has almost all of his films and I have seen quite a few of them. I am a big fan of horror and I will watch anything that looks interesting, that is why I have seen his movies. Dario needs to go remember that under all the blood there is still a movie to be watched. Argento and Fulci are one and the same. Both use too much blood (most likely to make up for there lack of talent) and are very sucsessful at there craft. I will say one thing for the both of them. They are out there making there movies and making a living at it by following there dreams, but remember the same can also be said for Ed Wood.
So begins a journey that the American girl would never have anticipated in her wildest dreams. A student, Patty Newman, is seen leaving the in the pouring rain scared... That is nothing compared to the gruesome manner of her death at her girlfriend's flat. It ends with the painted ceiling glass bulging out and shattering towards the foyer, followed by Patty's garrotted, bloody body crashing downward from a worm's eye view. Exquisite! Bulging is also used in Inferno when the body of Mark's fellow student crashes down in front of him.
Suzy is the only likeable character here. She is pretty, shy, humble, but most important of all, she is intelligent and intuitive, which helps her during her stay. And Jessica Harper makes her a credible unique person the viewer roots for.
Alida Valli is also effective as the forbidding Miss Tanner, a typical supervisor-type Guardian. 1940's star Joan Bennett (Madame Blanc) is a more tempered Guardian, but nevertheless gives the presence that she is in charge. I don't know who plays the fat piggy-eyed servant. The character, who plays a semi-important role here, seems to have been raised on ugly pills all her life.
This movie if anything, is representative of Dario Argento's wild use of lights. Red and blue are the key colours here. The exterior of the academy is red, as are the carpeted panels in the hallways. My favorite use of red is when the girls are in the practice hall, converted to a makeshift dormitory.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
I love this movie!The story is great and the colours are awesome!Published 2 months ago by Bennny boy
Is this a joke? I watched this movie after seeing all these rave reviews about the movie. It is terrible. Terrible!!! Script is abysmal. Acting is horrible. A girl goes to school. Read morePublished on July 26 2014 by Dogbury
I love this movie but unfortunately the disc will not play on any bluray in Canada. Too bad...it is one of my favorite horror films.Published on April 11 2014 by W McMaster
I wanted an occult thriller - this isn't that. If you want a very old-fashioned banal horror movie, this will be great for a laugh. Read morePublished on Nov. 21 2013 by Steve Dent
I bought this film and was terribly dissapointed. This film was so dated. It was not creepy, nor scary, actually it was quite amusing to watch. The acting was so bad. Read morePublished on Aug. 8 2013 by BLAK N BLU
I got my package quite late, a week later than I was supposed to. Also,m due to lame packaging the dvd was squished and one of the discs was loose inside the new dvd, that was... Read morePublished on May 19 2013 by Steve Whalls
I bought this on the advice of a friend who collects this genre and he said it was a "must have".
First of all, except for one scene near the end of the flick there was... Read more
Watching the American trailer to this made me laugh especially when the background speaker whispers the title to this film. For all I can see this film is not about plot... Read morePublished on Oct. 26 2007 by Jenny
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