Suspiria ★★★★★

Witches of East Berlin. Gone are the days of Argento’s bubbly neons. This isn’t the time for that. The aesthetic of this Suspiria is rotted in brown and gray. Drab hardly covers it. It’s dense with atmosphere and wears a knapsack filled with implicit meaning. Narratively, the coven is divided within a politically divided Berlin and the film itself is divisive with its use of abrasive shock, thrusting itself into a meta-textual commentary based in, well, division! There is so much division around us anymore today that the seismic divide within the film’s own narrative almost comes off as normal and perhaps that’s the scariest thing at the base of Suspiria itself. Guadagnino confronts the allure of fascism, using the coven as a cover for Berlin’s own struggles with power. There are no easy outs. Political action is inherently compelled, literally exploded in clouds of blood, and division doesn’t dare stand the test of love. The only thing able to test love, true love, is the guilt and shame of the individual’s own past.

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