zaterdag 25 juni 2011

Phenomena (1985)

Argento is on his way to become one of my favorite directors. I was blown away when I first saw Suspiria just a couple of days ago, and he does it again with 'Phenomena' (or 'Creepers'). A wild ride where mindblowing suprises lurk around every corner, covered with Argento's famous juices...

I don't think this one is really that much different than Suspiria, if you break it down that is. Again it's about an American student who ends up at a school in a foreign country where they seem to attrack evil upon themselves. Again, it's all about murder. But this time Argento raises the amount of supernatural influences. It's definitely a mixture that works when he's behind it, no matter how inconsequent or unlikely it know you'll enjoy it to the fullest.
At least I did. It's not as impressive as Suspiria was to me, but he always does something special that will be remembered for quite some time. The opening sequence seems pretty standard, yet it sets the perfect vibe. You feel lost and haunted while surrounded by a beautiful landscape. It will only get better from here on out, simply because we meet Jennifer, played by the good-looking Jennifer Connelly.

She takes care of the supernatural part. It's an interesting feature in the storyline. It's not the main selling point (which reveals itself at the end) but it adds a nasty vibe. Argento's choice to make her powers revolve around insects is a smart one. It always reminds me of Fulci's 'City of the Living Dead', those moments just stick around for a long...long time. 
The story remains unpredictable untill the end, but then it seems like it was never ment to be predicted. The entire film is nicely shot and the soundtrack will definitely get your attention, good or bad. The rock music works suprisingly well since it's so..different than you'd come to expect. The more traditional sound isn't left for dead so the combination of those two turned out great if you ask me.

I, like everybody else I guess, especially enjoyed the lengthy final. Which is like one big rollercoaster ride. It gets pretty nasty at this point, suprising the viewer every ten seconds while remaining uncommonly suspensefull. I couldn't even grab a new handfull of chips or zip the living shit out of my beer at this point. It was very exciting!
Should I even add a conclusion? Ok, here I go: I loved it! Not as much as Suspiria but that's nothing to be ashamed of. It has a great Argento-vibe and class, yet again delivering well dosed gore and supernatural stuff. The eighties were awesome...

Score: 94/100


Anthony Cowin zei

What a pair of brilliant films. Two of my faves along with The Bird with the Crystal Plumage.

Nice review and take on the films.


TonyT zei

Thanks man! I truly love his style so I'll definitely order 'The bird with...' very soon.

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