A Brief Introduction
Years in Review
Films Ranked: 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005
Current Criticism
Search Criticism
Past Criticism
Top 10 Lists
Notable Short Films
Contact Me


Director:  Luca Guadagnino
Year Released:  2018
Rating:  0.5

Susie (Dakota Johnson), a ballet dancer from Ohio, goes to train in Berlin under Madame Blanc (Tilda Swinton, who plays three roles) but slowly discovers there's some weirdness going on and that the female instructors might just be witches. I admit to not being all that impressed with the original by Dario Argento, but somehow this manages to be even worse: Guadagnino has yet to find a story he couldn't drag out unnecessarily, and there's some feeble attempt to tie the demonic nonsense to the Red Army Faction (in the 1970's) and, of course, the Nazis (yes, them again). There's some geriatric nudity (if you're into that sort of thing) and heads that explode when Dakota becomes some sort of monster (while a nice Thom Yorke song plays on the soundtrack), but Sylvie Testud's character does the right thing: she stabs herself in the neck so she doesn't have to be a part of it anymore. To re-write a line from the script: "This is vanity. This isn't art."

Return to the Previous Page

© Copyright 2019 Matthew Lotti.