Suspiria (1977)




Dario Argento




Jessica Harper, Stefania Casini, Flavio Bucci, Miguel Bosé, Alida Valli, Joan Bennett, Udo Kier, Barbara Magnolfi, Eva Axén, Rudolf Schündler, Susanna Javicoli, Franca Scagnetti, Giuseppe Transocchi, Jacopo Mariani, Renato Scarpa


A young American dancer (Jessica Harper) travels to Europe to join a prestigious ballet school in Germany and soon realizes that the school houses something evil.


Last Wednesday, to celebrate its 40th anniversary, "Suspiria" was shown in the majority of Italian cinemas, and although I hadn't seen any Dario Argento film before and horror isn't exactly my thing, I still decided to give it a shot. After all Argento is the master of (Italian) horror. Needless to say my expectations were pretty high, and the film just didn't live up to it.

The storyline was promising. Sure, it wasn't anything spectacular, just the typical supernatural horror storyline, but it was promising. Unfortuntately it was poorly executed, very obvious and simple. But it's not even fair calling it a plot because there wasn't a lot of logic in it. Just a bunch of events happening.

In spite of that, Dario Argento still managed to build quite intense suspense and deliver some shocks as well as one of the most memorable murder scenes in history. Still the film isn't very scary. 

But if there's something I've noticed while watching "Suspiria" is that it is the kind of film that's all about style and doesn't really care about substance - basically like del Toro's recent works -, and I have to say Argento did a truly beautiful job there. The visuals are simply stunning, from the unique cinematography to the brilliant use of light and colour. The creepy musical score also helps build some tension, but it's a little overused and at times it gets annoying.

The acting isn't anything special, but does a better job than the average horror cast because of Joan Bennett and Alida Valli who both gives quite good performances. The rest of the acting is pretty wooden though. 


  1. That's really cool that Italian theaters were showing this. I love Susperia. You're right, the acting isn't that special but the soundtrack and the story were fun.

    1. I was very surprised to see it in theaters, especially that one mostly showing blockbusters, but I'm glad they did. They also showed Son of Saul at the end of January for the Holocaust Remembrance Day but unfortunately I missed it. It's unbelievable though that they didn't last year when it was released.

  2. It's funny to read the names and then see 2 very famous actresses in the credits. I don't think i will see this any time soon though