Michele Soavi's The Church, terrible!

Discussion in 'Euro Horror' started by Surge92, Feb 1, 2001.

  1. AlkanFan

    AlkanFan Guest

    I've been meaning to ask about the Stagefright DVD. When I used to watch the VHS (put out by Imperial Entertainment) I was amazed by the film's style arising out of the combination of visuals and Simon Boswell's wonderful score. When I watched the DVD, however, I thought that the film had somehow lost its power. After some comparison between the two, I've come to the conclusion that the power of the audio track was somhow lost in the mixing (the example that comes to mind is the aftermath of the killing of the actress on stage. In the VHS track, the music overpowered the dialogue, which, in combination with the lighting effects, engendered a surreal piece of cinema. In the Anchor Bay version, the music seems to be somehow downplayed in favor of the dialogue, which subsequently takes away from the power of the scene). Am I imagining things here or has somebody else noticed this?

    As for the Kubric films, I think that you should try rewatching them. I caught Eyes Wide Shut on HBO and found it to be very hypnotic (you have to love the use of Ligeti and Liszt's Grey Clouds in the soundtrack). As for the The Shining, it is one of my favorite horror films of all time. You definitely need to give these another viewing.
     
  2. EPKJ

    EPKJ Guest

    Soavi's Films

    To date, Michele Soavi has directed the following full length theatrical non-documentary films:

    1: Stagefright
    2: The Church
    3: The Sect
    4: Cemetery Man

    Now, that means that the film everyone raves about is his last film, and only constitutes one fourth of his work. So, hell ya!, you can see that you already don't like 75% of his films. I don't hold out much hope for the Cemetery Man, but, we shall see. I might be surprised.
     
  3. suspiria

    suspiria Guest

    1. Kubrick's "The Shining" is one of the greatest horror films ever made.

    2. Soavi was dubbed as the new master of Italian horror post-Dellamorte so please hunt that title down before writing him off.

    3. The Church features some GREAT cinematography IMHO. Some geat camerawork etc.

    4. When Bava and Argento made their first films the giallo/horror market was the "in" thing at the time and funding was easily available. When Soavi made his first few films his budget paled in comparison.

    :) my opinions of course....
     
  4. suspiria

    suspiria Guest

    Re: Soavi's Films

    You haven't seen The Sect and no one has commented on it so why dub that as being crap as well? And why on earth are you so bitter and negative? We're trying to tell you that Soavi is brilliant with Dellamorte and you hold little hope.

    In the words of Eric Cartman, "You got a little sand in your vagina there Kyle? Does it itch?"

    :D
     
  5. EPKJ

    EPKJ Guest

    Suspiria, this is from the back cover of Anchor Bay's edition of Stagefright:

    "Stagefright marked the stunning directorial debut of Dario Argento protege Michele Soavi (The Church, Cemetery Man) and instantly sealed his reputation as the leader of Italian horror's new generation of filmmakers."

    The following is from the back cover of Anchor Bay's edition of The Church:

    "The Church was co-written and produced by maestro Dario Argento (Suspiria) and sealed the reputation of director Michele Soavi (Stagefright, Cemetery Man) as the new master of Italian horror."

    Now, do you begin to see why I am reacting as I am. These quotes do not claim that these are early efforts by the man who directed Cemetery Man. They claim that these works are masterpieces which sealed his reputation! This is absurd
     
  6. suspiria

    suspiria Guest

    I totally agree with you in regards to Anchor Bay's comments... Soavi can, by no means at all, be dubbed the new master of Italian horror from StageFright and The Church alone.. if he had made just those two films I wouldn't even call him a good director but Dellamorte Dellamore literally blew me away... if you're into philosophy and Peter Jackson's "Dead Alive/Braindead" mixed with better-than-Argento direction it'll be your next favourite film of all time....
     
  7. EPKJ

    EPKJ Guest

    Well, Suspiria, I think that we have come to a meeting of minds. I am quite willing to judge Cemetery Man on its own merits. I want to be blown away. Once again, I don't hate Soavi's early films, I just resent the hyperbole surrounding them. I love Pieces, and actually purchased the Diamond version because no other company has released it. Pieces is a really bad film, but it is so funny that I love watching it.
     
  8. Atmims

    Atmims Guest

    I wanted to be blown away too. I first heard of Cemetery Man and then for about a year all I could read was people saying how perfect it was and what a masterpiece it was. I finally saw it a few weeks ago and I got to admit I was dissapointed. I can't think of anything wrong with it and it did had some really good parts except overall I don't think it should be hyped up so much.

    I also really didn't understand the ending and that was the main thing that dissapointed me. I usually wouldn't question the greatness of a movie, but me and my brother both had the same opinion after watching "Dellamorte...", that it was dissapointing. I would like to know if there is anyone else that was a little dissapointed by the movie after reading so much great comments on it?

    Overall I would rate it a 7/10 unlike the 10/10 I was expecting. In my opinion it was just an above average movie, far from being one of my favorite movies.
    Adrian Mims
     
  9. AlkanFan

    AlkanFan Guest

    I normally try to keep my comments strictly to DVDs and try not to place value judgements on the films themselves, but here I feel the need to interject. If you are at all into existentialism you'll absolutely love Dellamorte Dellamore. I don't want to comment on the ending because I'd hate to give it away, but, without giving away too much, I can say that it turns the whole movie on its head and - gasp - makes the viewer come to his own conclusions (similar in a way to the cliffhanger ending of The Ninth Gate but with superior execution). This is not to say that people who didn't like the ending are braindead or anything; it's just to say that they didn't view the ending in the right context.
     
  10. Atmims

    Atmims Guest

    AlkanFan,
    I don't think I viewed the ending in the right context when I first saw it. To me the ending has a meaning to it but I guess I just don't like coming to my own conclusions. I want to know the "right" conclusion because I don't believe Soavi made the movie without his own idea in mind. I could be wrong of course. If this is ever released in region 1 it MUST have a commentary.
    Adrian Mims
     
  11. Andrew

    Andrew Guest

    There's an Italian (PAL, I think) release from MEDUSA that contains an audio commentary, however it's in Italian. Perhaps someone with this disc could shed some light as to what Soavi had to say about the ending...?
     
  12. Oh well - some like it, and some don't.
    If you're one of those who do - then do!
    If you're one of those who don't - don't!


    Simple.:D
     
  13. Hellbilly

    Hellbilly Active Member

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    I thought it was ok. Not the best and not the worst either.
     
  14. Cydeous

    Cydeous Axxon N

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    Why all this Michele Soavi bashing? Personally, I think that he's a good director. I'm not a big fan of <B>Stagefright</B> but that's how he got "his foot in the door."

    Believe it or not but <B>The Church</B> has a deeper meaning to it. He mentions the alchemist Fulcanelli, which is interesting. I read the alchemist's book called "Mysteries of the Cathedrals" and it's very cool. There's a lot of hidden meanings in the cathedrals... the mystery alone kept me intrigued. Okay, the script was a hack between <B>Demons 3</B> and original material and that's why the film isn't as good as it should have been.

    I'm looking forward to Anchor Bay's release of <B>The Sect</B>... is this EVER coming out? This film is along the lines of <B>The Church</B>, IMO, but a little more polished.

    <B>Dellamorte, Dellamore</B> is a masterpiece!

    One more thing... I can't believe that someone posted that <B>The Shining</B> and <B>Eyes Wide Shut</B> were bad films... WHOA!!! No wonder he didn't like <B>The Church</B>... what do these films have in common? They all have a deeper meaning that everyone has a different take on. My advice: stay away from David Lynch movies!!!
     
  15. DrJOnes666

    DrJOnes666 Guest

    Let me, at my turn, revive this thread a bit. I didn't know its existence until I viewed the CHURCH today and posted in the GENERAL section of this forum.
    I thought I'd repost my comments in here, since it feels most appropriate to do so.




    Yesterday, I was at a local DVD store. I purchased the CHURCH out of the blue because I had read very good things about it. Also, since it was made under the working title Demons 3, I thought to myself that I couldn't go wrong with this title.

    Boy! was I wrong!
    Why so many people like THE CHURCH, I will never understand. Sure, there are a few visual shots in there that, when taken seperately, are very interesting. But the script is uterly boring and is lacking so much rythm, I just don't see how this got a theatrial release in the first place... and how it got a cult following after that!

    After viewing the film, tonight, I immediately went at www.imdb.com and read some users reviews. I will take the liberty to copy/paste an entry from the user Kastore which I believe best describes how I feel about this movie.

    ******** SPOILERS ************

    "I don't even know where to start with this movie. Supposedly, some people like it for its heavy style. That may be, thanks to Michele Soavi's expert directing under the tutelage of Dario Argento. I also understand that "The Church" is somehow meant to be a sequel to "Demons". At first, my question with the movie was: Where are the 'demons'? Unfortunately, once the demons showed up (sort of), my question became a more valid one: Where, oh where, is the script? This movie has what is probably a record number of writers for a non-anthology film: 7. Despite the talent that this writing team entails – Argento, Soavi, Bava, Sacchetti – it undoubtedly seems like all their individual inputs got lost in the shuffle. Almost no explanation is given for anything in this movie, and the last half is a seemingly endless stream of scenes that just simply don't make sense.

    How do the police show up so quickly after the woman calls 911? How did they even know where she was, since she didn't give her address to the dispatcher in the first place? What's keeping the demons from escaping the church through the route Asia Argento has been using all these nights? Was Asia's character a reincarnation of the basket-hooded figure from the beginning? How does the sacristan come back to life to kill with a gate after he puts a jackhammer through his own chest? What the hell is a ‘sacristan'? Did the kooky old woman rip her husband's head off to ring the church bell with it? And if so, why? Where were the gears that the bride got her gown caught in? Who was that weird-looking kid sleeping in the pews, and why does he run up and try to bite one of the schoolkids through a sheet of plastic? Can anyone explain the ‘your best friend has your face' part? What was the point of all those hallucinations? What in the hell was that slimy formation of writhing bodies at the end?

    I can go on, but you get the idea. There are some great instances of camerawork (i.e. – the first pan of the interior of the church), nightmarish lighting, and clever death scenes. But all the style that Soavi can muster just can't distract me from an atrocious patchwork of a script. At one point, "The Church" was at a prominent place in the Bottom 100 (if I'm not mistaken, it was #1 for a short period). As far as I'm concerned, it can go back up on that list. 2/10"
    ------ end of Kastor's review --------


    I totally agree with his post. Soooo MANY things go unexplained, it's simply too much. It just doesn't make sense. I understand that in order to appreciate B-Movies, in particular Italian horror flicks, one must sometime put his logic on the side for 90 minutes. But a minimum of logic is needed to at least have a coherant story. I mean, the Church is in no way Suspiria. Enough with the dreamlike sequences that mean absolutely nothing in a "normal context".
    And PLEASE, WHERE were the Demons?
    Sure, the Demon fucking the girl at the end was quite a nice view. But by that time, even if he did a 69 with her, it wouldn't have saved the film.


    Utterly boring. I place it high up there in my list of AVOID AT ALL COST, with films like "Manhattan Baby", "Madman", and "Sleepaway Camp 2 and 3".

    Fortunately, Dellamorte Dellamore was a much better film and proved that Soavi could direct an interesting movie... Even if this one also did contain a pretty chaotic script, it was at least coherant, well acted, and visually stunning.


    DrJOnes666
     
  16. Grim

    Grim Well-Known Member

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    I like Stage Fright, and I liked the last half hour of the Church, I vaguely remember seeing Dellamorte Dellamore under the "Cemetery Man" title on Bravo. I personally think Stage Fright was kick ass, I'd have to give Dellamorte Dellamore another viewing though. I was like 10 when I saw it so I'd need to watch it again.
     
  17. suspiria

    suspiria Guest

    well i dont know what all your problems are... i watched The Church again the other night and loved it.. sure it has heaps of plot holes (which eurohorror films doesn't!?!) but I love the film's "feel", the general story concerning the cathedrals is great and the visual style plus soundtrack is awesome...

    quit ya complaining... :glasses:

    if The Church ain't up to scratch for ya then go watch "Fast and the Furious" or some other polished rubbish...
     
  18. Grim

    Grim Well-Known Member

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    True. If The Church does have something on it's side it's atmosphere and the soundtrack.
     
  19. zombi3

    zombi3 Pure Evil

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    I like the Church, even if it is a bit slow. Dellamorte Dellamore is definitely Soavi's masterpiece.:cool:
     
  20. mcchrist

    mcchrist A new breed of pervert!

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    Am I alone in thinking that Soavi's only truly good movie was Stage Fright? Dellamorte Dellamore was severely overrated, and The Church was awful IMO.
     

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