Director – Dario Argento
Cast – Leigh McCloskey, Irene Miracle, Eleonora Giorgi, Dario Nicolodi, Sacha Pitoeff, Alida Valli, Veronica Lazar, Gabriele Lavia
Release Year – 1980
Reviewed by John of the Dead
Three years after the success of Dario Argento’s “Suspiria”, the legendary horror director gave us the second part of his “Three Mothers” trilogy, “Inferno”. Not as successful as “Suspiria”, this flick has remained one of the most underrated horror films of the 1980s, and once again shows us that Dario Argento can direct one hell of a movie.
Inferno follows siblings Mark Elliot, and Rose Elliot. Rose is studying in New York and stumbles upon an old book titled “The Three Mothers”, which states that one of the covens of witches resides in New York, and the other in Rome, where her brother Mark is studying. She realizes the very building she is living in is where the witches in New York reside, and she pleads with her brother to come and assist her. By the time he makes it to New York however, it is too late, and his is now investigating his sister’s disappearance. As his investigation gets closer and closer to the truth, the murders around him begin to escalate, and the true evil behind the building is revealed.
I really enjoyed how this film’s story was told. Alternating between characters thousands of miles away until Mark comes to New York was a genius idea. I am personally a fan of this trilogy’s plots, and find the “Three Mothers” aspect very interesting so naturally…I was sucked into this film. The plot is not the strongest one, and there are holes here and there. The reason why I still enjoyed this film is because Dario Argento is a damn good director, and made this film highly enjoyable despite it’s plot problems. Once again we get his great use of camerawork and long scenes, especially long murder scenes. I just love how he does that, and no one does it better than him. The sets for this film are amazing, and add much to the visual pleasure we get from watching this film. Legendary Italian director Mario Bava even assisted with building and designing some of the sets for this flick. How awesome is that???
We get a fair amount of gore in this flick, and the kills are pretty awesome. Some of the kills are hard to understand, like the kill at the lake, but they only draw me into the film even more. I think Argento is one of the few directors who can get away with confusing kills, simply because he executes them so well.
I have no major complaints for this film other than what I mentioned about the plot earlier. Now don’t get me wrong, the plot is not a bad or poor one, it just has elements that I normally would bash a film for. I am not simply favoring Dario Argento because he is Dario Argento. I am forgiving this film for it’s plot woes simply because of it’s ability to carry on awesomely despite it’s plot woes. That takes talent my friends.
Overall, this is a great film that I recommend to all horror fans, especially those familiar with Dario Argento’s work. We get great direction from Argento and regardless, an interesting storyline.