The Three Faces of Terror is a horror anthology film made by special effects artist Sergio Stivaletti. Stivaletti worked with many of the luminaries of Italian horror, including Dario Argento, Sergio Martino and Riccardo Freda; and their influence appears to have rubbed off on him somewhat as while this isn't a great film by any stretch of the imagination; it's an interesting one that harks back to some of the classics of Italian horror; most notably Mario Bava's masterpiece Black Sabbath, of which the title is a direct reference. The first story also takes influence from the Bava film as a major plot point involves someone taking a ring from the finger of a dead person. While on a dig, a man takes a ring from the finger of a mummy and subsequently finds himself dealing with a curse - that being that he turns into a werewolf! The story is not as interesting as it could have been (certainly a recurring theme in this film) and that's a shame. He finally does turn into a werewolf at the end and as you would expect given the director's primary vocation, it features a good change sequence and the werewolf costumes isn't all that bad either.
The second story is probably the most inventive of the three and focuses on the subject of plastic surgery. A woman goes to see a surgeon with her friend; and requests that she has her face altered to look just like said friend. The doctor and the friend subsequently disappear; leaving the girl on a strange odyssey through the surgery. While inventive in theme, this theme is not particularly thick on the story side and that leaves it rather lacking as it doesn't really go anywhere. The final story was my favourite and is entitled 'Guardian of the Lake'. This simply focuses on a bunch of friends that go for a relaxing weekend at a lake and end up becoming dinner for a monster that happens to live in the lake. This film has some originality with regards to the wraparound story as each of the stories ends; before we get the final conclusion of each story once the third story has - apparently - finished. This doesn't particularly add anything to the film; but I don't think I've seen this in an anthology before. The conclusion to the wraparound is decent also - although anyone who has seen the British classic Tales from the Crypt won't be very surprised.
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