Suspiria

Suspiria ★★★★★

I don't think I've seen a remake change so much, yet also still feel so faithful to the atmosphere of the original as Suspiria goes from being Dario Argento's candy coloured giallo nightmare to Luca Guadagnino's sinister mindfuck! To go from a tender LGBT romance film in Call Me By Your Name to this shows an extraordinary depth. I am convinced if the devil picked up a movie camera, the movie would look something like this!

Suspiria is amongst the most divisive films of the year amongst critics where many seem to shift between loving and hating this film with very little in between and it's easy to see why. It's a slow burn horror that builds to some of the most shocking, surreal imagery I have ever witnessed. It walks a fine line when it comes to the literally twisted brutality as this absolutely pulls no punches in that regards. Dario Argento's original film was very typical of the classic giallo style where the deaths go into detail with the close ups making them as over the top as possible, and as brutal as it is theres always that awareness that it isn't realistic. This film by contrast is brutal to the point where it is impossible disconnect from the pain and this will make this a tough watch for some. Seeing bodies contorted and bending like you are looking at a human pretzel doesnt just look painful, but the gritty sound design of bones slowly breaking is discomforting to say the least.

Everything in this film is presented in a way that breaks any sense of comfort you have as a viewer. Its still an homage to the original with its visual style, but the muted colour pallet draining away all the colour feels completely bleak. The use of close-ups, scene blocking as well as the infrequent quick cuts is at times is completely suffocating. With all that, said I also couldn't look away as it is also so hypnotic. It might not have the Goblin soundtrack from the original, which to date is one of my all time favourite movie scores, Thom Yorke's score does it justice in my opinion and perfectly fits to the haunting atmosphere this movie goes for.

There is a moment in particular where I couldn't help but notice the visual nods to Alfred Hitchcock's masterpiece Psycho, where where the camera placement changes depending on the mood of the characters the camera would cut to a different angle. Dakota Johnson and Tilda Swinton are both amazing in this film and some of their scenes together the camera would cut to an angle where it felt like they tower over the frame which actually toys with you as the film goes on.

I absolutely loved the dancing in this movie. It feels raw and passionate, yet the movement in these scenes sometimes feels completely inhuman, like there is a genuine power to them, like it has this ritualistic feel to it. I just could not turn away as these sequences are absolutely mesmerising to watch and feel genuinely intense and again Thom Yorke's masterful score just fits those scenes so well.

I've really had to think about this one and I feel like a rewatch is mandatory at this point as I'd love to get a greater understanding of the plot as at 2 and a half hours, there is simply too much to take in, in one sitting weather it's the crazy plot twists, the insane imagery, or the visual symbolism. This stays with you long after its over and I personally love it when that happens.

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