Suspiria (2018)

Suspiria (2018) MOVIE DETAILS
Name: Suspiria
Year: 2018
Country: USA, Italy
Director: Luca Guadagnino
Main cast: Dakota Johnson, Tilda Swinton, Doris Hick, Chloë Grace Moretz, Mia Goth
Runtime: 152 minutes
Production company: Frenesy Film Company, Videa, First Sun, Amazon Studios

(2018) was, as a concept, one of the most complicated remakes I could think of in the current cinema panorama. For several reasons. First of all, the obvious. Original Suspiria (1977) is such a masterpiece, a so strong referent and key title of the Giallo genre, that it is almost impossible to conceive how one could think of redoing such a film. The story treatment, the amazing music by one of the genre’s main composers Goblin, that amazing use of the lights and colors, Suspiria (1977) is so much of a perfect movie that its director Dario Argento never managed to repeat such a sublime setup. And second of all, and probably that is more a personal perception, Suspiria (2018)’s director Luca Guadagnino was better known for his drama and romance movies, remarking titles like Call Me by Your Name (2017) and A Bigger Splash (2015) that although had good reception they are far, very far from the horror genre. In all terms, in story composition, darkness, music… And theme, of course.

Every review prior to the big release of Suspiria (2018) was on its favor. Some more enthusiastic than others, but always positive. But I was still skeptical about the film. I was excited and eager to watch it, especially it being the opening title for Sitges Film Festival in 2018, but I had my fears. Well, as soon as the movie started I knew I was witnessing something special. And after leaving the theater with a very euphoric feeling, and having meditated well about what was seen, I can state that it is a very very good movie. Overall, it has a very strong personality of its own. It is not like many other horror remakes where the filmmakers try to copy the original but using nowadays techniques. Not at all. It is the same concept, perhaps, but at the same time is totally different. The story travels around the three witches, Mother Tenebrarum, Mother Lachrymarum and Mother Suspiriorum, yes, but it’s a different story development that Argento used 40 years ago.

In technical and artistic terms, Suspiria (2018) also outstands. Tilda Swinton is perfect, as she always is, but this time she brings such a mysterious darkness to her character that one can’t help to wonder if there is an actual actress on the screen or some kind of supernatural real witch. And Dakota Johnson absolutely saves the role, a very complicated one, with an intense performance, also surrounded by an unnatural mysterious aura, and with a good amount of dancing sequences only capable of somebody with a gifted and well-trained body. Mystery, a word to repeat several times when talking about this movie. Mystery and horror, pure horror. The fear of the unknown, the fear of darkness, the fear of fear! Luca Guadagnino did it perfect combining those dark and creepy images, but at the same time very mundane. The story is solid, with a smart narrative sometimes opening more questions than bringing answers, but it never feels incomplete. Opening doors for future sequels? Who knows, but I think Suspiria (2018) doesn’t need them. The movie is already strong by itself.

Mystery and darkness. The exteriors of a Berlin in the 1970s in a moment of chaos and social and political change are very accurately depicted. The set decoration team made that Berlin, those buildings and those streets, to be like another character in the movie. A very dark and mellow score by Thom York of the alternative rock band Radiohead brings a perfect dosage of melancholia, beautiness and creepiness that fits like a glove to the happening of the story. Sound and images hand in hand in order to create one of the most obscure and intense horror films of the last year. Almost hard to believe Luca Guadagnino hasn’t spent all his life doing horror films, because this is the work of a real master.

2018 is been a year with very good titles in the horror genre. I won’t say Suspiria (2018) is the best of them all, very hard to say, but surelly it is on the top of the list. An absolute recomendation, either if you liked the Dario Argento original or not. One of the unmissable titles of the year without a doubt.

RATE: 8/10