Wednesday, 3 July 2013
Dellamorte Dellamore (1994).
Dellamorte Dellamore (also known as Cemetery Man) is a beautiful film. The artistic flair is apparent in every single frame from beginning to end. It is also incredibly absurd, dark and gory. Directed by Michele Soavi, who had previously handled Stagefright and The Church, Dellamorte Dellamore is held as the best film of his very short career. Dellamorte Dellamore is one of the most unique films of any genre. The surreal horror fantasy that is portrayed on screen is simply breathtaking, and the viewer has no idea where the movie is going to take them. For it to be labelled as simply 'a zombie film' does the movie no justice whatsoever.
Francesco Dellamorte works at the Buffalora cemetery with his assistant Gnaghi. A plague has hit the cemetery, where after seven days, the dead seem to return back to life. Dellamorte has to ensure the dead are destroyed and returned to their resting place, something which he seems to have no trouble doing. But when a loved one dies and comes back, Dellamorte begins to lose his grip on reality and his moral behavior.
From the very moment the camera panned back from the skull at the beginning, I was amazed. The camera work is so natural, so fluid, so beautiful. The feelings of loneliness and depression are accentuated through great camera work and the performance of Rupert Everett as Francesco Dellamorte. The movie is also incredibly poignant, and if the last ten minutes or so don't move you, then I would check that you are still alive.
Dellamorte Dellamore is also a challenging movie, and you will not discover all that it has to offer in one viewing. It is thought provoking, cynical and filled with such a bleak humor and horrific violence that you can't help but fall in love with everything the movie represents, which at it's purest form is love and death, and that how in the end, they are both one and the same.
There is also some amazing and genuinely creepy zombie action in the movie, sometimes played for comedy, other times played completely straight, and it never fails to hit home. The Buffalora cemetery looks like nothing you have ever seen before. The way Soavi makes such a morbid setting look so beautiful is a testament to the filmmakers ability. Everything is achieved through inventive shots, beautiful slow motion and dizzying angles, which manage both to show immense beauty, but also to keep the viewer on edge.
Dellamorte Dellamore is not a movie for anyone. Many will be turned off by the artistic look of the movie and it's downbeat and slow pace. But if you stick with it, you will be treated to not only one of the greatest Italian horror films of all time, but perhaps one of the greatest (and weirdest) horror films ever. There really is nothing else like this out there.