Suspiria ★★★★

I'm sure this radical reinterpretation works its dark magick in several different ways. My passion for it is wicked and super-primitive, as always.

Of course, witches. We aren't seeing a lot of witchcraft in contemporary Horror, so to pledge allegiance is a must. Make no mistake, we are not talking lame Wiccan hippie hocus-pocus here — we're talking the Helena Markos Coven: Real witches. Classy witches. Bitchy witches. Old-skool witches. Smoking, hexing, lurking beneath arthouse surfaces, sacrificing naïve ballerinas for nefarious reasons, conspiring to hide their secrets until the film's chilling conclusion.

2) NEO MAGICAL REALISM (sorta-kinda)!
Where the original is a psychedelic inferno of color, much of it unashamedly surrealist, this remake overtly keeps a foot in both hypnotic worlds: the slick, dry, Instagram-ready style of Black Swan, American Horror Story or Neon Demon (minus the colors!); and the mysterious, meditative nature of Rainer Werner Fassbinder. What a flashback! What a perfect setting for the key wicked witches who steal the film — Angela Winkler ("Miss Tanner") and Ingrid Caven ("Miss Vendegast"), Fassbinder's fav muse of glory days!

Skrew the tribal ballet BS. Expressionist dancing is not what really makes this film rock. Rather, it's the subliminal shivers of historical horror, simultaneously illuminating and echoing the ethos of death and rebirth, power and destruction: For one the terror of the Red Army Faction, the "war of 6 against 60 million"; for another the still-lingering shadows of the past: Theresienstadt, the Holocaust, the Reich… You can't have "German" stuff without 'em, can you?

A startlingly counter-intuitive chiller that gains power upon further, sleepless-night reflection. A proud manifesto for sacrilegiously rethinking classics of old.

Sending love and light to Luca Guadagnino...

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