Monday, October 19, 2015

Dellamorte Dellamore (1994)

Film also released as "Cemetery Man".

In a word, this is a very pretty film. By pretty, I mean artistic and visually appealing... even when the things are happening on the screen should by all rights turn your stomach.

I do count it as being my favorite Italian horror film. It's not exactly a "serious" film, as the preview above clearly illustrates, but it's also not a silly movie. The humor is very dark and wrapped in a blanket of absurdity that makes it amusing rather than inspiring full belly laughs.

Rupert Everett was a perfect choice for the lead. The dry humor and reclusive behavior plays a convincing cemetery-keeper who has never learned how to really associate with the living. The supporting cast is a bit less convincing, but the characters are not necessarily meant to be believable. The contrast between Dellamorte's personalty and those of his living associates couldn't be more plain, but that adds to the more subtle layer of humor.

As a zombie film, I liked the approach the film takes. The little problem about the dead rising from their graves is mainly passed off as mere rumor to anyone outside of the cemetery or public offices. Even those who do have to deal directly with the rising corpses treat it as part of the mundane job rather than a serious epidemic. The zombies themselves take the backseat while we genuinely get to know the living characters.

Make no mistake, the zombies are creepy. We see an invasion of recently-deceased children, a motorcyclist who was so tangled up in his vehicle that he was buried with it, and a strange array of other undead characters.

It is a fun film to watch, and a pretty one to boot.

Info on IMDB: Cemetery Man

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