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An anorexic young woman escapes from a psychiatric clinic and meets a young man who wants to help. She is caught and returned to her parents, who are soon beheaded by a garrotting stranger making the rounds about town, apparently striking only when it rains. The orphaned young woman and her new lover launch their own investigation and are endangered when a link is discovered with the victims and a particular operation performed years before. Written by
Ed Sutton <email@example.com>
The character played by Asia Argento is inspired by her half-sister Anna (Nicolodi's daughter from a previous marriage) who actually suffered from anorexia. Anna died in a scooter accident in 1994 shortly after the film's release, but she is seen in the actual movie during the closing credits dancing in the balcony. See more »
Music by Andrea Bandel and Pino Donaggio
Arranged by Andrea Bandel
Score Conducted by Gianfranco Plenizio
Arranged and Orchestrated by Pino Donaggio and Natale Massara
Keyboards Programming and Performance by Paolo Steffan
All music published by Bixio C.E.M.S.A. See more »
Doesn't always "feels" like an Argento film, but it's certainly not bad!
Italian's top-class horror director Dario Argento obviously impressed some people with his previous films ('Opera' in particular) as he was offered the opportunity to film a fully American backed production. Trauma is a gruesome and sadistic thriller from the giallo-master, completely set in Minnesota and depending on a respectable US cast. There's a serial decapitator at large and the young, anorexic Aura (director's daughter Asia Argento) seemly is his/her main-target. The good-hearted journalist David (Christopher Rydell) takes the girl under his wings after the killer got both of her parents and, as their relationship becomes more intimate, the routine of sadistic killings slowly emerges. A bone-chilling mystery from the past slowly unravels and it involves multiple (ex-)doctors from a psychiatric clinic.
The plots in gialli rarely are credible so you can count on the fact that this 'Trauma' contains several far-fetched nonsense aspects as well. Especially the U-turn twist near the end is pretty hard to digest. My advise: don't pay too much attention to this and drown in Argento's brilliant as always camera movements and the stunning portrayal of the violence. Trauma may not be as bloody as 'Tenebrae' or the more recent 'Sleepless' but some of the butchering done here still is perfectly nauseating. What else do you expect with a killer whose modus operandi includes beheading people? Unfortunately, Argento still lacks the skills to direct his actors. You can't even blame the dubbing this time, but the performances are far below average. Asia Argento is forgiven, since it was her first leading role. But I expected a little better from routine B-stars like Frederic Forrest, Piper Laurie and James Russo. Brad Dourif is a joy to observe, but his appearance is far too brief to save the dull acting. To me, Trauma turned out to be a pleasant Sunday afternoon time-waster. Not nearly Argento's most memorable film (he hasn't made any memorable film in the 90's) but maybe the ideal film for inexperienced horror fans to get into contact with Argento's work. All the trademarks that made him legendary in the field are present, but none of them is properly elaborated like it should be.
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