5.9/10
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Silver Slime (1981)

| Short, Fantasy, Horror
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A highly enjoyable homage to the masters of the Italian giallo
25 March 2017 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Gans's student film, made during his time at IDHEC, is low on plot, but its stunning visuals more than compensate for its narrative deficiencies. The seemingly nonsensical title refers to the two great masters of the Italian giallo, Dario Argento and Mario Bava, whose last names translate (respectively) to "silver" and "slime," and it is their films to which Gans pays tribute here. Thus we have a faceless leather-clad killer, two killings via straight razor, heavily stylized cinematography, and a Goblin-esque soundtrack. In addition to quoting the work of the aforementioned masters, however, Gans also sneaks in a reference to the bathtub scene of Lucio Fulci's The Beyond (1981), which I appreciated. As far as student films go, this is well above average, and if it were feature length it could proudly stand alongside the gialli being made in Italy at that time. Unfortunately it also bears one of the great faults of student films, in that it's so imitative of the masters that it doesn't really bring anything new to the table. Gans would eventually find his own voice, but I must admit I find this and his work in Necronomicon (1993) to be far more satisfying than any of his features.


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