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Demoni

Demons
Dämonen 2

Italy 1985
produced by
Dario Argento for DACFILM
directed by Lamberto Bava
starring Urbano Barberini, Natasha Hovey, Karl Zinny, Paolo Cozzo, Fiore Argento, Fabiola Toledo, Nicoletta Elmi, Stelio Candelli, Nicole Tessier, Geretta Geretta (as Geretta Giancarlo), Bobby Rhodes, Guido Baldi, Bettina Ciampolini, Giuseppe Mauro Cruciano, Sally Day, Eliana Miglio (as Eliana Hoppe), Jasmine Maimone, Marcello Modugno, Michele Soavi, Peter Pitsch, Lino Salemme, Enrica MAria Scrivano, Alex Serra, Claudio Spadaro
story by Dardano Sacchetti, screenplay by Dario Argento, Lamberto Bava, Franco Ferrini, Dardano Sacchetti, music by Claudio Simonetti, special effects by Sergio Stivaletti, Danilo Bollettini, assistant director: Michele Soavi

Lamberto Bava's Demons

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Several people are invited to a movie screening in a newly opened theatre by a man in a metal mask (Michele Soavi). The film is a run-of-the-mill piece of schlock-horror in which a quartet of teenage cannonfodder (Eliana Miglio, Jasmine Maimone, Marcello Modugno, Michele Soavi), find a demon's mask in the tomb of Nostradamus, and when one of them wears the mask, he is quickly turned into a deadly demon ad goes after the others - who are, once injured by him, turned into demons themselves.

What the audience of the film doesn't know though, is that they themselves have been turned into cannonfodder as well since the demon curse is all too real. And while black pimp Tony (Bobby Rhodes, doing a broad blaxploitation imitation) first takes care of saving everyone - until the demons get him as well - it soon becomes apparent that George (Urbano Barberini) and Cheryl (Natasha Hovey) will be the surviving couple.

It's like that: At first, under Tony's leadership, our group of threatened humans barricade themselves in up in the theatre's gallery, but at one point (for no apparent reason) they think they are saved and tear down the barricades again ... and are pretty much all killed by the demons and turned into demons themselves. Only George and Cheryl somehow manage to get away, and soon George fights back against the demons with the help of a motorbike and a samurai sword.

Then, for no reason whatsoever, a helicopter breaks through the ceiling of the theatre. George uses its rotor blades to slice up more demons, and quicker too, then he and Cheryl escape through the hole in the ceiling to the building's roof - only to see that the demons have meanwhile taken over the city.

Fortunately though, they are saved by some people who are still humans and who promise to take them somewhere far away. In a not-so-surprising surprise ending, Cheryl turns into a demon in the end.

 

The extremely thin plot of this film is little more than an excuse  to showcase as many (well done) gore effects as possible with the occasional (sloppily directed) suspense routine thrown in - and it's actually hard to even imagine that so little plot needed four screenwriters, of which at least Dario Argento and Franco Ferrini have done much better.

Still, a horror film with a plot that is just an excuse to show gore effects could work. Could, only in this case it doesn't: Problem is, all the characters are completely one-dimensional and actually unlikable, which makes it hard to feel with them, identify with them. This is of course not at all helped by the fact that all the actors are completely talent-free and totally bland (where does Lamberto Bava always get his actors from ?), which makes identification even harder. And then there are of course these improbable plottwists like the helicopter crashing through the ceiling ... now what was that all about ?

In other words, even though this film is held in high esteem by some gorehounds (for obvious reasons), for movie lovers it's a big disappointment.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Thanks for watching !!!

 

 

On the same day
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you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

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directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
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out now on DVD

 

 

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