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A young man tries to help a teenage European girl who escaped from a clinic hospital after witnessing the murder of her parents by a serial killer and they try to find the killer before the killer finds them.

Director:

Dario Argento

Writers:

Franco Ferrini (story), Gianni Romoli (story) (as Giovanni Romoli) | 4 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Christopher Rydell ... David Parsons
Asia Argento ... Aura Petrescu
Piper Laurie ... Adriana Petrescu
Frederic Forrest ... Dr. Judd
Laura Johnson ... Grace Harrington
Dominique Serrand Dominique Serrand ... Stefan Petrescu
James Russo ... Capt. Travis
Ira Belgrade Ira Belgrade ... Arnie
Brad Dourif ... Dr. Lloyd
Hope Alexander-Willis ... Linda Quirk
Sharon Barr ... Hilda Volkman
Isabell O'Connor Isabell O'Connor ... Georgia Jackson (as Isabell Monk)
Cory Garvin Cory Garvin ... Gabriel Pickering
Terry Perkins Terry Perkins ... Mrs. Pickering
Tony Saffold Tony Saffold ... Ben Aldrich
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Storyline

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 <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

a dark secret, a twisted mind, an insane desire for revenge. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and terror, and for some sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Italy | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 March 1993 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Aura's Enigma See more »

Filming Locations:

Hopkins, Minnesota, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The role of Grace was originally offered to Bridget Fonda. See more »

Goofs

Severed heads cannot talk. One needs lungs in order to talk. See more »

Alternate Versions

A special uncut version reportedly available on video features 7 minutes of footage omitted from foreign prints including:
  • a new introduction of the Aura and David characters: David (Chris Rydell) drives Grace (Laura Johnson) at the airport and sees Aura (Asia Argento) being beaten by a man whose plane ticket she tried to steal;
  • a new scene features Grace visiting David at the TV station and asking him about Aura; David invites Grace to his house and then calls Aura at home to ask her if she needs any food; Aura lies to him and tells she's already eaten;
  • Aura visits a market and is spotted by Dr. Jarvis (Frederic Forrest), who tries to catch her;
  • After David and Aura escape from the Marigold, she tells him she's taken a little souvenir from Nurse Volkmann's purse; another new shot shows the Marigold's owner talking to the police;
  • David checks into a hotel after following Linda Quirk's car and asks for a room overlooking the parking lot;
  • David asks for information about Dr. Lloyd in a saloon;
  • After David calls Grace and asks her for prescription forms, she meets and confronts him, trying to make him face the fact that he's become a junkie;
  • The death scenes of Linda Quick and of the killer are more graphically explicit (the wire is seen cutting through Linda's neck).
See more »

Connections

References Rear Window (1954) See more »

Soundtracks

The Loss
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 »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Giallo American style
2 July 2005 | by ODDBearSee all my reviews

Dario Argento's Trauma is his only American film in full length.

The film is filled with elements from his previous Italian produced films. The Hitchcockian element from Argento's Animal trilogy is present here (the Hitchcock element even furthered by Pino Donaggio's music score, a frequent Brian De Palma collabarator), as is the Freudian undertone of repressed guilt and past sins from Deep Red and Tenebrae. This is Argento basically delivering his usual giallo in a more American style. And he's hugely successful at it, too.

Trauma has a lot of great set pieces, some great scenes of extreme violence and gore to spare,a cleverly plotted and written story, decent performances from Rydell and Asia and genuine old fashioned suspense. And a devilishly clever ending. Trauma has it all in abundance.

It goes a bit over the top concerning those severed heads and some make-up effects could have been better, I thought. But these are minor quibbles in an otherwise excellent suspense yarn from a master director. Trauma may well be his most underrated film.

I have to say, also, that I find it immensely enjoyable that Argento used live sound here instead of his usual dubbing.


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