Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Deep Red (1975) review


This chapter in Argento's collection is a very odd and complex one, but it is very scary and well-crafted. Only a few minor flaws throw it off its axis of greatness.

PLOT:Jazz pianist, Marcus Daly (David Hemmings), witnesses a murder through a window of paranormal psychic, Helga (Macha Meril), who sensed her murderer coming. Things don't seem so bad afterwards, despite the fact that he's shaky, but then strange things start to happen. The unforseen killer starts to kill any friend or aquaintance of Marc that may have a connection to this person's history or a key to the murders. Marcus then becomes enthralled by figuring it out and teams up with his drunk best friend, Carlo (Gabriele Lavia), photographer Gianna (Daria Nicolodi), and Helga's friend, Giordani (Glauco Mauri), to solve the murders and put this killer's history together. It's a good plot executed brilliantly.

ACTING:The performances in this film are pretty much outstanding overall. David Hemmings played a pretty respectable part as Marcus Daly, the main protagonist of the film, but he was not the only outstanding peformance in the film. The others, I guess I could call them shiners too, would be Gabriele Lavia as Carlo, Clara Calamai as Carlo's mother, Macha Meril as Helga, and Glauco Mauri as Giordani. I felt the passion in the parts of Helga and Giordani. The emotion the put into their parts was just brilliant. I could also feel the emotion in the other two, but it was more dramatic than outstanding. Either way, the performances this film holds are all worthy of praise.

SCORE:The score was very unique and well done by a band named Goblin. I had heard about these guys and how they helped Argento's films, and now I must say that I love their musical vision. They sound like a combination with horror score and futuristic rock, which go together rather well. Not to mention this film had a theme creepier than any other I've heard (the one with the child singing). That theme song just sends shivers down my spine. I hope to see much more good stuff from Goblin in Argento's next few films.

EFFECTS:The effects used in here were pretty great, as well as standard in Argento's style. Argento's typical bright-red blood color and harsh prop violence enhance this film's creepiness and shock, making it all the more scary.

CAMERAWORK:Dario Argento has a certain style for how he wants his films to be shot, and it is seen clearly in here through the different pans and zooms that go with the mood ever so well. He has a vision much like Kubrick with the camera.

OTHER CONTENT:This is one of the few horror films that scared me fairly well. It was very scary, well-crafted together, stylized, complex, odd, and mysterious. It was definitely like almost no other film; notice that I said almost. One of the few flaws this film has is being very similar in structure to that of his past work, The Bird With the Crystal Plumage. In both, a guy witnesses a murder and gets ensnared in the mystery, an overly important detail from the beginning comes back as a shocker to the main character and audience, a brief climax is shown before the mystery is solved, and the aquaintances of the main character are hunted and killed. It's very similar, but this film is more advanced in its plot twists and uniqueness. This one is way more of a horror than a slight thriller/horror combo. Also, I hated that the copy I had of the film shot the dialogue in both English and Italian dub, alternating at random times. That just became aggrivating after a while and along with the organization,  threw the film off of its axis of greatness.

OVERALL,an awesome Argento horror with a brillaint plot, outstanding performances, unique score by Goblin with an overtly creepy theme, classic Argento effects, Argento style camerawork, very scary moments, well-crafted plot elements, stylized aspects, complex plot twists, a good mystery, and an odd feeling, but it borrowed a bit from his past films, and the double-dubs threw the film off a miniscule bit.

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