Director – Lamberto Bava
Cast – Virginia Bryant, Paolo Malco, Sabrina Ferilli, Stefania Montorsi, Patrizio Vinci, Alice Di Giuseppe
Release Year – 1988
Reviewed by John of the Dead
After two of the coolest Italian horror films of all time, the Dario Argento written and Lamberto Bava directed “Demons” and “Demons II”, there has been much speculation as to what is the true third installment to this series. Why is that? Well…because several films have been claimed to be the third installment. First came director Lamberto Bava’s “Demons III: The Ogre”, then Michele Saovi’s “The Church”, then “Black Demons” aka “Demoni 3”. In my opinion, “Demons III: The Ogre” is the true third installment to the series. How so? Well…this film was written and directed by Lamberto Bava, who directed the first two entries. Another reason is that Michele Saovi always aimed for his “The Church” to not be a sequel of the series, even though it was originally conceived as one. Lastly…”Demoni 3” has absolutely no reason to be associated with the original series aside from its title. While “Demons III: The Ogre” definitely pales in comparison to the fun and zany antics that made the first two installments so great, it still proves to be a nice atmospheric watch that only suffers from slow development.
This flick follows a horror novelist who grew up having bad dreams about a dreadful ogre that lived in her basement. She is now a full grown woman with a husband and young son, and together they have rented a big castle in a small town to aide her in finding the creativity to write her next novel. Immediately upon moving into the home she begins to have the same dreams she did as a child but with one very different element…the dreams are real, and so is the ogre that is dying to get out of her new basement.
As you can tell, this flick does not follow the original series either. BUT because this comes from Lamberto Bava himself…I deem this the true sequel to the series. This flick did have me hooked at the beginning, but by the end of the film I felt a bid dissatisfied. The slow development was fine by me given it gave us some creepy scenes thanks to Bava’s awesome direction and sets, but in the end the film remained as slow as it started and unfortunately that does not work in my book. This could have been fixed had we been given more action from the ogre, but it could be that budgetary constrains did not allow Bava to do that for us. Oh well.
I did really like this film’s story though, as simple as it sounds. There is just something about a haunting childhood memory that manifests itself into something tangible at the adult age that gets me every time. I guess because if you apply that situation to your life(hypothetically) it is downright horrifying. The horror in this film felt real, and we got some good character play from the lead character. The cast is small, so you can imagine the death toll is small as well, and that is partly what left me unsatisfied at the end. These Italian horror flicks are great, and the biggest reason behind their success is how fun and bloody great they are, and this flick just did not throw in enough bloody fun for me to give this a great review.
Overall, this is an OK watch that has much potential but unfortunately falls short compared to how great it could have been. The atmosphere is awesome but the storyline is just a bit dull and that held this film back.