It looks like La Terza Madre (the third film in Dario Argento’s “Three Mothers” Trilogy) will have its premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival this year. Starring Dario’s darkly sexy daughter Asia Argento, the film “will depict the confrontation with the final ‘Mother’, the witch known as Mater Lachrymarum.” Wicked.
It took me a long time to like Argento. See, when you’re a kid, you want, well, horror in your horror films. You know–vicious, terrible, unrelenting violence. But Argento’s films are more about tension and mood and visual style, and while he doesn’t skimp on the blood (when the time is right), his films aren’t traditional American slash-fests, and that can be off-putting for a bloodthirsty teenager.
When you get a bit older, however, and you start to look at Argento’s movies as serious pieces of filmmaking rather than bits of bloody candy, all kinds of fascinating patterns and details begin to emerge. You begin to judge things in terms of their relative “Argento-ness”. For example, that gorgeous first shot in Dawn of the Dead with Gaylen Ross huddled against the blood-red shag of the TV studio wall–that’s 100% Argtento (he produced the film, and no doubt had a major influence on its production).
Anyway, if you’d like to meet the man, he’ll be appearing at the Rue Morgue Festival of Fear this year (which it looks like I’ll be missing for the second year in a row–but I’ll hopefully catch him at TIFF a couple weeks later). Oh, and in September Yo La Tengo will host a screening of Argento’s Four Flies on Grey Velvet here in Austin as part of the Alamo’s “Cinema Under the Influence” series.