In the small New England town of Dunwich, a priest commits suicide by hanging himself in the church cemetery which somehow opens the gates of hell allowing the dead to rise. Peter, a New York City reporter, teams up with a young psychic, named Mary, to travel to the town where they team up with another couple, psychiatrist Jerry and patient Sandra, to find a way to close the gates before All Saints Day or the dead all over the world will rise up and kill the living.Written by
Fulci's best and probably my favorite non-slasher horror movie ever
For the record, my favorite horror movie ever is MANIAC, as I've always had a soft spot for all slasher films. But when talking about a "straight" horror film (or about as straight as a Lucio Fulci film is going to get), this is probably the greatest example.
First of all, don't go into this looking for a detailed story. A priest hangs himself, zombies rise, and all sorts of bad things happen. That's about the extent of it.
Also, don't go in just looking for tons of blood and gore -- there are some memorable gore scenes here, but there's not as much as some people on here have suggested. This isn't Dead Alive or anything. I wouldn't say there's a "lot" of gore, but what is here is pretty shocking in the context of the plot...
Anyway, if you do decide to see this movie, just know that you're going to enter a world with the greatest atmosphere I've ever seen in a horror film. The scenery, the look of the film, the music, the sudden jarring transitions between scenes, the extreme close-ups, the death scenes, the completely downbeat tone to the whole thing -- it's just so horrifying that it's ridiculous. I find Fulci pretty hit or miss (usually miss, though New York Ripper and the Beyond are amazing), but this to me stands way above anything he ever did. I think a lot of people expect some kind of American-ized action-packed zombie movie where watching this film and don't understand all the elements at work here.
And this film has probably the greatest and most terrifying ending scene I've ever witnessed. Highly recommended.
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