Horrorfest 2021 Presents: The Church (1989, Michele Soavi)


Hey I wanted to like The Church. I’m usually a sucker for goofy, outrageous 1980s crazy foreign cinema. I just wasn’t feeling this one and by the end I was ready for it to be over. This is how I imagine most people feel when sitting through giallo movies that I enjoy a lot. This is a flick that maybe could have used less plot, or more plot, or I donno, something. By the time really cool things start happening I had already fallen asleep and it took me two days to finish this movie.

None of that is a good sign. Alright the subway train death was neat, and hey look the Devil or some demon shows up near the end to do evil things! Yey! The opener promised a much cooler movie than what I watched, and I’m left frustrated that I didn’t like this movie. I bet if I had seen this in theaters I would have felt ripped off, and I saw it for free on Tubi and I still feel ripped off. Sigh…

Horrorfest 2019 Presents: Stage Fright (1987, Michele Soavi)


When it comes to Michele Soavi’s body of work, Stage Fright is probably one of the more straightforward of his movies. Yet even this 1980s giallo has a lot of weird touches, and that is what makes this psycho killer goes after theater people movie more interesting than most. Naturally the kills are brutal, and Soavi tries to present characters that are not as paper thin as the ones in a typical slasher movie. Oh and Stage Fright takes the cliche of “All the dead people rounded up” and dials it up to 11 with a great, memorable scene that can be found easily via Google.

Barbara Cupisti is great as the final girl, and David Brandon also is the crazed director who at time poses as much a threat to the cast as the killer does with his awful decisions. Even though the last act goes on way too long, and the ending feels tacked on, I rather enjoyed Stage Fright. As far as 1980s slasher and giallos go this one was one of the best, and is well made. Even hardcore cinema buffs can appreciate a movie that even if it is not great still achieves what it sets out to do, with some extra flair thrown in for style points.

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