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Art imitating art is the basis of this demonic tale of a group of invited guests who are granted a free lunch in the form of a screening of a horror film that brings naturalism to life. Baited and penned in, this walled-in feeling quickly turns to screams and fear as those who are dead lust after the flesh of those living. The free lunch has turned full circle in the cinema of hell and it is only a question of time before the demons from the abyss are asking for second portions. Written by
Lamberto Bava's "Dèmoni" aka. "Demons" of 1985 is a gory, stylish and very entertaining horror flick written by the master, Dario Argento. I'm sure getting acknowledged in Horror cinema wasn't easy for director Lamberto Bava , being the son of Mario Bava, beyond doubt one of the all-time greatest horror geniuses in motion picture history. Expectations must have certainly been high. But although Lamberto Bava does certainly not manage to reach his father's brilliance, "Demons" is definitely worth watching.
Cheryl (Natasha Hovey) is given free tickets for a sneak preview by a mysteriously dressed man at a Berlin subway station. Accompanied by a friend, she goes to see the movie at the eerie-looking 'Metropol' cinema. Before the film starts, a woman scratches herself on a creepy silver mask in the waiting hall. The film, which turns out to be a Horror flick tells the story of a prediction by Nostradamus, connected with a demonic mask.
The plot is not that original, but the film is made in a very stylish manner, with a good cinematography, and great color play in the tradition of Mario Bava and Dario Argento. The gore is intense, lots of slicing, stabbing cutting and biting. The cast may not be phenomenal, but Natasha Hovey delivers a good leading performance and there are a bunch of funny characters, such as a black pimp named Tony (played by Bobby Rhodes) and the two hookers he is accompanied by, as well as a strange blind guy and his wife and a very strange usherette. The main part of the score was composed by Claudio Simonetti of the great Progressive Rock band Goblin, whose ingenious soundtracks have also complimented many of Dario Argento's movies.
Being a huge fan of Dario Argento, I must say that "Dèmoni" does definitely not live up to most of the movies Argento directed himself. Nevertheless, it is an extremely entertaining Horror flick that doesn't scant with blood and gore, and especially the gory sequences are very stylishly made. If you expect the quality of Argento's or Mario Bava's masterpieces, you will probably be disappointed. Just expect a very stylish, gory and extremely entertaining Horror flick, and your expectations will easily be fulfilled. Recommended. 7/10
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