Saturday, April 23, 2011
DELLAMORTE DELLAMORE (CEMETERY MAN) (1994)
Directed by Michele Soavi
Rupert Everett - Francesco Dellamorte
Francois Hadji-Lazaro - Gnaghi
Anna Falchi - She
Dellamorte is the guardian of the cemetery of Buffalora, a little town in the north of Italy, in which the dead come back to life and he has the job of killing them a second time.
Dellamorte Dellamore was one of those movies I heard about but could never get my hands on a copy of. Then thanks to Anchor Bay, they released it on DVD. This was back in 2006 mind you. The really sad thing about all of this, is that I haven't watched the movie until now, and that's thanks to Dylan Dog: Dead Of Night being released. I really don't know why I waited so long to watch it, or it could be because I have over 1000 DVDs and I work, so some of the movies I get to, while others I don't get to watch until a later point in time. I must admit one of the reasons why I started this blog was to work my way through my movie collection sooner rather than later. Okay, enough back story about me, here is the review of the film.
This film is something to behold, but it's the story that drives this movie more than anything else. Even when it gets weird in parts it only helps add to the story. The humor is suitable dark as in how much can a person really take living in cemetery while having to kill it's recently buried inhabitants when they come back to un-life a short time later but this can be viewed as a metaphor for what is happening to Dellamorte. One thing that will be overlooked throughout the whole film is the broken skull Dellamorte is attempting to put back together throughout the film as it gives a major clue to the whole story as is the snowglobe during the closing credits as Gnaghi is a major factor in both instances and the true meaning of the film. Another scene that was thought provoking was the conversation in the hospital between Dellamorte and Franco as another clue is giving to the true meaning of the story and the state of Dellamorte's mind. Yet all this is outshined by the last three minutes of the film. I was just speechless at what it implied and loved the wondering aspect of it. Now some people will absolutely hate the movie due to the ending alone, but yet to me the ending adds so much depth to a film that already has a solid story to begin with. There are so many hints subtly giving throughout the film as what is really going on it's easy to miss them even when you're basically slapped in the face with them.
The acting is superb from start to finish, with Rupert Everett giving an amazing performance. If Everett didn't give the portrayal he did, the movie would have failed in so many ways, yet it's thank to him Dellamorte is the anchor to the audience that draws us in. Even when his character starts losing his grip on reality, which is easily to point the exact moment this happens, you still feel a connection to him. Yet it's when he does lose his grip and multiple layers are added is when Everett really shines additionally as when he realizes that his idea of love will never match up with reality. Even Francois Hadji-Lazaro's Gnaghi is fun to watch, as what is seen as a simpleton to begin with, becomes more complex and interesting throughout, all the more so with his character's bittersweet side story of his love for the Mayor's daughter whose is just a head. And the end of the film just destroys all pre-conceived notions about his character and what happens to both Gnaghi and Dellamorte.
While the movie is fun to watch, the plot does get a little wacky though it doesn't take away anything from the overall experience. Gorgeously shot with style and flair specifically the more thought provoking scenes. Filled with great violent scenes that come out of nowhere while other times is widely telegraphed, it is always fun to see. Weird, engaging, surreal, and always interesting, Dellamorte Dellamore is a film worth viewing again just to catch the little things you miss the first time around at what was is truly going on such as when a character is shown with wings, or it can be viewed simply for what is giving on the screen. There are so many layers to this film that it's sad that this is one of those films that are overlooked compared to what is coming out that is considered horror now.
Motorcyclist faceplant by moving bus.
Death, death, death comes sweeping down, filthy death the leering clown, death on wings, death by surprise, failing evil from worldly eyes, death that spawns as life succumbs, while death and love, two kindred drums, beat the time till judgement day, an actor in a passion play, without beginning, without end, evermore, amen.
The sets for the cemetery in the film were built upon actual abandoned cemetery grounds in Italy.
The ossuary (a crypt for bones) that was used in the film was quite real. Supposedly one of the crew members removed some of the bones from the ossuary during filming, but quickly replaced them the next day claiming to have encountered an angry ghost following the removal of the bones.
The English translation of Dellamorte Dellamore is 'Of Dead of Love.'
When Francesco and "She" are kissing in the crypt with the shroud over their heads, the shot mimics the painting "The Lovers" by Rene Magritte.
Dellamorte Dellamore takes place in the same universe as Dylan Dog.