Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

A second review requested by David Greenwood, with thanks for contributing twice to the Second Quinquennial Antagony & Ecstasy ACS Fundraiser. Knowing, as one can’t help but know, that Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom is the most god-damned notorious art film of them all for its grotesque displays of violence, warped sexuality, and […]

1982’s The New York Ripper is a very, very, very special motion picture: it represents the exact moment at which the great Italian horror master Lucio Fulci transformed into the hacky Italian schlockmeister Lucio Fulci. The transition was achieved very cleanly: outside of two scenes which could stand along any giallo of the ’70s for […]

There’s nothing as fascinating as an utterly inexplicable mash-up, of the sort we get with The Perfume of the Lady in Black from 1974: basically, what we have here is Roman Polanski’s Repulsion filtered through the heavy stylistic lens of the gialli, Italy’s genre of gorgeous, atmospheric, usually inscrutable murder mysteries from the ’60s and […]

Part of the Italian Horror Blogathon at Hugo Stiglitz Makes Movies Michele Soavi only made four horror films in a career that wasn’t very long (he took many years off to care for his unwell son), which surely explains why his profile isn’t higher. There’s no good argument, certainly not one based on those of […]

Part of the Italian Horror Blogathon at Hugo Stiglitz Makes Movies There’s an argument to be made that Lucio Fulci had the most varied career of any director in history. Certainly, among those filmmakers chiefly known for their contributions to the Italian genre machine, I can think of no-one who directed films in such wildly […]

Part of the Italian Horror Blogathon at Hugo Stiglitz Makes Movies The phrase that I have chosen, “Masters of Italian horror”, doesn’t entirely describe the work of Riccardo Freda, surely not a name spoken of in the same breath as Mario Bava, Dario Argento, and Lucio Fulci. But his historical importance is such that he’s […]

Part of the Italian Horror Blogathon at Hugo Stiglitz Makes Movies I don’t imagine that Black Sunday – to give the film its standard English title, though strictly speaking that name only appears on the version released by American International Pictures in the 1960s, now thoroughly superseded – needs any help from me in getting […]

October’s such a busy month: here I am, looking to pack away the Chicago International Film Festival and get to work on Kevin Olson’s Italian Horror Blogathon, and wouldn’t you know it, but I was given an absolutely perfect, gift-wrapped transition from one to the other in the form of Dracula 3D, the latest film […]

It is right, and a good and joyful thing, that producer Dino De Laurentiis and director Roger Vadim should have collaborated on a film. Their careers were too complementary for there to have been any possibility of them both bopping around Europe at the same time without colliding. Indeed, the fact that 1968’s Barbarella was […]

Part of the Italian Horror Blogathon at Hugo Stiglitz Makes Movies An earlier review of this film can be found here. It’s one thing to watch Mother of Tears, Dario Argento’s 2007 conclusion to his Three Mothers trilogy, with some distance between yourself, and Suspiria and Inferno, and understand in a general way why it […]

Part of the Italian Horror Blogathon at Hugo Stiglitz Makes Movies From among the Video Nasties 1980’s Inferno, Dario Argento’s very next movie after Suspiria was not just a sequel – a sequel that had not by any means suggested itself from the plot of the first film, mind you – but a film that […]

Part of the Italian Horror Blogathon at Hugo Stiglitz Makes Movies Suspiria is not just AN Italian horror movie – it is THE Italian horror movie. The best-known, the most widely-seen and widely-discussed, the one held to typify the style of Italian horror the most; the last of which, at least, is profoundly unfair, because […]