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Dario Argento

Dario Argento, the master of the macabre, started his film career in writing screenplays for Italian directors. He wrote among other things in collaboration with Bernardo Bertolucci the script to Sergio Leone´s "Once Upon a Time in the West", one of the best westerns of all time. His directorial debut was "The Bird with the Crystal Plumage" from 1970. A strong giallo there Argento introduced the killer with the black leather-gloves, who later on was to be found in many of his other films. Though it was relatively bloodless, one could already now see distinct marks on what should come. It is considered to be a pivotal influential mother to the slasher genre that began in the late seventies. The following year released Argento two giallos "The Cat O' Nine Tails" and "Four Flies on Grey Velvet", that completed his animal trilogy. They were not in the same class as the debut, but were still better than most of the other giallos at that time. He made the unknown comedy "The Five Days of Milan" in 1973, which never been seen outside Italy and France. In 1975 came the film which became alive to the horror fans,and by many considered to be Argento´s best, "Profondo rosso/Deep Red". A title that has become a household word. It is a giallo about a pianist who witness a very bestial murder of a clairvoyant person, and then together with a female reporter decides to solve the clues to catch the killer. The clever story is very much alike his "The Bird with the Crystal Plumage", but in "Deep Red" escalates everything in all fields. All Argento´s trademarks began now to appear, such as his visual style, the eerie atmosphere, the roving camera, the over-the-top gore and the music from the cult declared rock band Goblin. From now on was Dario Argento a name to count on. After "Deep Red" started he making supernatural horror movies. He had plans to do a trilogy about witches that he still not have finished. "Suspiria" from 1977 was the first installment in the Three Mothers trilogy. An Academy of ballet in Germany is the center of things in the plot. An American ballet student arrives, and discover when the body count rises that the Academy has a bizarre history. "Suspiria" is maybe the most beautiful horror film that ever been made. Dario made use of a red and blue color scheme that together with Goblin´s pounding soundtrack constituted an unusual uncanny atmosphere. "Suspiria" is Argento´s most popular picture, and without a doubt one of the greatest horror flicks. In 1978 co-produced Argento George A. Romero´s zombie classic "Dawn of the Dead", and that only increased his popularity. 1980 was the birth of the second installment in the Three Mothers trilogy. The second witch, Maid of Tenebrarum, the Mother of Darkness, lived in a building in New York, and was the cruelest of them. "Inferno" is somewhat unequal, but is in its best moments among the best Argento made. It is weird and incoherent, and has an imagery that is almost as beautiful as "Suspiria". The Keith Emerson score mixed with opera are excellent. In 1982 returned Argento to his roots with the giallo "Tenebrae". His movies had ever since "Deep Red" become more and more violent, and reached its climax in "Tenebrae". It is about American writer Peter Neil who travel to Rome to promote his new novel. Then a ripper start to murder women and cram paper from Neil´s book into their mouths, and soon is Peter Neil one of the suspected. "Tenebrae" is full of beautiful arranged set pieces and is one of Argento´s most conspicous flicks. Very hard to find in uncut shape. In "Phenomena" (1985) act Jennifer Connelly in only her second film the principal part, as the girl who can communicate with insects. That special ability proves to be useful when she enter a girl school in Switzerland, there a killer is on the loose and finish girls in a steady stream. A rather silly plot is saved by a haunting atmosphere and music from Goblin. "Phenomena" is Argento´s own favorite film. In 1986 produced and wrote Dario Lamberto Bava´s "Demons" which was a box office success in the States. The follow-up "Demons 2" was however a failure of great proportions. "Opera" from 1987 was a giallo in opera surroundings. It was Argento´s most expensive, and a technical masterpiece. Some think that he focused too much on camera movement and imagery instead of plot, but it´s still impressive. "Opera" was Argento´s last great effort. In "Two Evil Eyes" (1990) made Argento and George A. Romero each an Edgar Allan Poe story. None of the directors came up to their normal standard. In his following three movies let he the daughter Asia act the principal part. "Trauma" (1993) and "The Stendhal Syndrome" (1996) were decent ordinary thrillers, nothing more, while "The Phantom of the Opera" (1998) was utterly bad and the lowest mark of Argento´s career. His latest, "Sleepless" (2001), is yet another decent flick. Better than most of the teen slashers of today, bur far worse than "Deep Red", "Suspiria", "Inferno", "Tenebrae", "Phenomena" and "Opera". I have no longer any hope for Dario Argento. Many years ago he was called Italy´s Alfred Hitchcock. By comparison with Hitchcock was Argento´s plots a mess, but his imagery was a feast for the eyes. He has never received his rightful worldwide breakthrough (chiefly because of the US never accepted the plotholes in his stories), but his fanatical fans in Europe will never forget him.

Official Website | Wikipedia
Sep 7, 1940 In Rome, Italy
Horror movies:
First Appeared:
In the movie The Bird with the Crystal Plumage 1970-02-27
Latest Project:
Movie Suspiria 2018-11-02
Splat Known For
Poster of Phenomena
Poster of Inferno
Poster of Suspiria
Poster of Deep Red
Splat Dario Argento Horror Filmography
Movie Suspiria Writer (characters) 2018-11-02
Movie Into the Dark: Exploring the Horror Himself 2016
Movie Blood on Méliès' Moon Himself 2016-05-01
Movie The Sandman Director 2016-12-31
Series 100 Pallottole D'Argento D'Argento 2012-05-15
Movie Dracula 3D Director/Writer (screenplay) 2012-01-29
Movie Horror Europa with Mark Gatiss Himself 2012-10-30
Movie Rosso Recollections: Dario Argento's Deep Genius Himself 2011-01-03
Movie Dario Argento's Monkey Business: The Making of Phenomena Himself 2011-03-07
Movie Fulci Flashbacks: Reflections on Italy's Premiere Paura Protagonist Himself 2011-03-14
Movie The Italian Hitchcock: Dario Argento Remembers The Bird With the Crystal Plumage Himself 2011-05-30
Movie The Other Mother: Making 'The Black Cat' Himself 2010-09-13
Movie Dario's Inferno Himself 2010-09-13
Movie Fear at 400 Degrees: The Cine-Excess of Suspiria Himself 2009
Movie Giallo Director/Writer 2009-06-25
Movie Dead On: The Life and Cinema of George A. Romero Himself 2008
Movie Fleshing It Out: The Making of 'Pelts' Himself 2007-02-15
Movie The Fearmakers Collection Himself 2007-05-08
Movie Hanging Shadows Himself 2007-09-14
Movie The Mother of Tears Director/Writer/Producer 2007-09-06
Movie Masters of Horror: Pelts Director 2006-01-12
Movie Going to Pieces: The Rise and Fall of the Slasher Film Himself (archive footage) 2006-10-13
Movie Out of the Shadows Himself 2005-10-27
Movie Masters of Horror: Jenifer Director 2005-11-18
Movie Mario Bava: Operazione paura Himself 2004
Movie The Card Player Director/Writer (story and screenplay)/Producer 2004-01-02
Movie The Dead Will Walk Himself 2004-09-07
Movie Quando all'inferno non ci sarà più posto Himself 2004-12-04
Movie Masters of Horror Himself 2002-11-06
Movie Suspiria 25th Anniversary Himself 2001-09-11
Movie Sleepless Director/Writer (story and screenplay) 2001-01-05
Movie Conducting Dario Argento's 'Opera' Himself 2001-09-17
Movie Inferno 20th Anniversary Himself 2000-04-25
Movie Dario Argento: An Eye for Horror Himself 2000-01-01
Movie Deep Red 25th Anniversary Himself 2000-04-25
Movie Dario Argento's Phantom of the Opera Director/Writer 1998-11-20
Movie Il mondo di Dario Argento 3: Il museo degli orrori di Dario Argento Himself 1997
Movie The Wax Mask Writer (story)/Producer 1997-04-03
Movie The Stendhal Syndrome Director/Writer (story and screenplay)/Producer 1996-01-26
Movie Trauma Director/Writer/Producer/Film Editing 1993-03-12
Movie Innocent Blood Paramedic 1992-09-25
Movie Dario Argento: Master of Horror Himself 1991-01-01
Movie The Sect Writer/Producer 1991-03-01
Movie Fear in the Dark Himself 1991-10-29
Movie Two Evil Eyes Director (segment "The Black Cat")/Writer/Executive producer 1990-01-25
Movie The Church Writer (story)/Producer 1989-03-10
Movie Opera Director/Writer/Producer/Narrator (Italian version) (voice, uncredited) 1987-12-19
Movie Demons 2 Writer/Producer 1986-10-09
Movie Stephen King's World of Horror Himself 1986-01-01
Movie Dario Argento's World of Horror Himself 1985-01-01
Movie Phenomena Director/Writer (story and screenplay)/Producer/Narrator (Italian version) (voice, uncredited) 1985-01-31
Movie Demons Writer (screenplay)/Producer 1985-10-04
Movie Tenebre Director/Writer/Narrator (Italian version) / Murderer's Hands (voice, uncredited) 1982-10-28
Movie Inferno Director/Writer/Narrator (voice, uncredited) 1980-02-07
Movie Dawn of the Dead Film Editing (recut version, uncredited)/Composer 1978-09-02
Movie Suspiria Director/Writer/Composer/Narrator (voice, uncredited) 1977-02-01
Movie Deep Red Director/Writer/Murderer's Hands (uncredited) 1975-03-07
Movie La porta sul buio: La bambola Producer/Himself - Host (uncredited) 1973
Movie La porta sul buio: Testimone oculare Director (uncredited)/Writer/Producer/ Himself - Host (uncredited) 1973
Movie La porta sul buio: Il vicino di casa Producer/Himself - Host (uncredited) 1973
Movie La porta sul buio: Il tram Director/Writer/Producer/Himself - Host (uncredited) 1973
Series La porta sul buio Director (1 episode, 1973)/Writer (2 episodes, 1973)/Producer (4 episodes, 1973) 1973-09-04
Movie The Bird with the Crystal Plumage Director/Writer/Murderer's Hands (uncredited) 1970-02-27