An old Gothic cathedral, built over a mass grave, develops strange powers which trap a number of people inside with ghosts from a 12th Century massacre seeking to resurrect an ancient demon from the bowels of the Earth.
Feodor Chaliapin Jr.
An unknown killer, clad in World War II U.S. Army fatigues, stalks a small New Jersey town bent on reliving a 35 year-old double murder by focusing on a group of college kids holding an annual Spring Dance.
Five campers arrive in the mountains to examine some property they have bought, but are warned by the forest ranger Roy McLean that a huge machete-wielding maniac has been terrorising the ... See full summary »
A spree of grisly murders is perpetrated in Frankfurt by a group of Satan worshippers. A school teacher almost runs over an old man with a box and takes him in. It's no accident that the ... See full summary »
A troupe of struggling stage actors is rehearsing for a small-town production of a play. Everything seems to be as it should until one of the cast members turns up dead. In a panic, the others try to get out, only to find they are now locked in the theater with the killer! Which one of them committed the murder, and who will get out alive? Written by
Jean-Marc Rocher <email@example.com>
At Minute marker 43:38 you can see a black and white photo of the villain from Joe D'Amato's . See more »
When Alicia uses the Fire Extinguisher on Irving Wallace, he falls and grabs a power cable to climb back up. In the wide shot of Irving Wallace climbing back up, in the far right corner of the frame, you can clearly see a cable, hoisting him up as he climbs up the cable. See more »
Lock the door, and hide the key. Go on. Do as your director says.
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A very satisfying thriller, visually and aurally, worth multiple viewings!
STAGEFRIGHT aka AQUARIUS is a very stylish chiller from Michele Soavi, whose critical reputation rests on this film and the later CEMETERY MAN.
Certainly the film is derivative, and fans of this subgenre will surely comment that they have seen it all before; however, Soavi, like his mentor Dario Argento, is astute when he chooses the likes of ENNIO MORRICONE; GOBLIN, and now SIMON BOSWELL to score his films.
Boswell's compositions together with the opening and end titles written by Stefano Mainetti propel the film along, and provide an aural edge to the onscreen visuals. And if their contributions were not enough, the inspired, and uncredited use of Dmitri Shostakovich's 8th symphony, 3rd movement ("allegro non troppo"), reflects the imaginative touches that distinguish this film from many others.
The play/film within a film works quite well, especially as the cinema is acknowledged to be the art of illusion; indeed this conceit looks ahead to the two DEMONS films, set in a cinema, where the audience are overwhelmed with illusion become reality.
The acting is more than sufficient as the characters are written as types, and set up as victims, just as the heroine has a personality that sets her apart. Her final scenes with the killer are very effective indeed; her fearfulness make her vulnerable, her vulnerability draws us to her, and in drawing us to her, we submit to the relentless onslaught the killer pursues.
This is a film where the viewer/audience surely knows the outcome, but the satisfaction comes from the execution - literally - of the route that the filmmaker takes.
I now have this film on a budget UK DVD which reveals little - I am playing it back on a 16:9 TV, and am very pleased with the quality of the sound (mono) and the visuals, plus some of the unusual, though rare basic extras.
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