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Italian horror fans can look forward to new flicks from Lamberto Bava, Umberto Lenzi and Sergio Martino!

Published at: June 15, 2006, 7:51 a.m. CST by staff

Ahoy, squirts! Quint here. I love me a good Italian horror flick. I love giallos and crime films as well, but there's something about a great Dario Argento or Lucio Fulci flick that just does it for me. It might be the colors Argento uses (or his music, for that matter) or it could be the intense gore someone like Fulci brings to his films. Whatever reason, those two filmmakers made me fall in love with Italian horror.

The state film entity called Istituto Luce is trying to jump start the long floundering Italian slasher genre with what is called a "four-pic Masters of Italian Horror package" done by directors like Lamberto Bava, Umberto Lenzi, Sergio Martino and newcomer Nicola Rondolino. I hope they mean 4 different films being sold as a package for international distribution, not four short films jammed together.

Umberto Lenzi did some really balls-out work, including the at times hard to watch MAKE THEM DIE... SLOWLY (aka CANNIBAL FEROX) and THE MAN FROM DEEP RIVER, both cannibal flicks that'll turn your skin. He also did a film called NIGHTMARE CITY that I quite like, although it is much less intense.

I'm quite a fan of Lamberto Bava's work. Yes, he's the son of Mario Bava, but his style is more like a melding of Argento's flair for the artistic and Fulci's eye for fun gore, with a bit of Sam Raimi-type camp thrown in for good measure. DEMONS and DEMONS 2 rock so hard. Lesser known, A BLADE IN THE DARK is also a favorite of mine.

I must confess to being fairly ignorant of Sergio Martino's work. I've seen TORSO, which he directed in the '70s and apart from having a great trailer and about 20 great minutes in the entire film I didn't take to it too much.

Here's specific information on their films. All sound really interesting, and some down-right fucked up (Umberto and Nicola, I'm looking at you):

Lenzi's "Horror Baby," about a 15-year-old paraplegic girl who becomes a serial killer after viewing sex from her window.

Lamberto Bava's "Murder House," set in a musician's villa where multiple murders occur. Bava, son of the late horror maestro Mario Bava, is the helmer of Dario Argento-produced "Demons," among many other pics.

Sergio Martino's "The Corners of the Night," tale of a young woman who moves into her deceased grandmother's house where nocturnal mayhem ensues. Martino's more than 60 helming credits include recently restored Barbara Bach starrer "Screamers," a cult title set on a mad Caribbean island.

Young Italo helmer Nicola Rondolino will helm "Brotherhood," in which three Romanian boys abducted by a child sex ring take revenge as ghosts.

This gathering of Italian horror icons was inspired by the Showtime MASTERS OF HORROR series. I just hope these guys put out some better work than we got in that series. It certainly seems like they're pushing the limits much more... I mean, that ghosts of raped and murdered children getting their revenge on the perverts who killed them sounds as fucked up as anything I've heard this year. I'd love to see some more great thrillers from these guys. What about you?

Readers Talkback

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  • June 15, 2006, 8:02 a.m. CST

    Primo

    by cookylamoo

  • June 15, 2006, 8:12 a.m. CST

    First

    by BatFreak

    Am i?

  • June 15, 2006, 8:15 a.m. CST

    See Lenzi & Martino on the big screen this summer

    by Vegiterrorist

    If you live in the Philadelphia area, Exhumed Films screens double features of classic cult/horror on a monthly basis. In July we'll be showing Ruggero Deodato's CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST along with Umberto Lenzi's CITY OF THE WALKING DEAD (aka NIGHTMARE CITY); then in August it's giallo night with Dario Argento's FOUR FLIES ON GREY VELVET and Sergio Martino's THEY'RE COMING TO GET YOU. All shows are projected in 16mm or 35mm. For more info, prices, dates, & directions to the theater, check out www.exhumedfilms.com.

  • June 15, 2006, 8:27 a.m. CST

    Love me some crazy horror...

    by brycemonkey

    would love to see them on the big screen Vegi however too far away. I've been watching these lately so have been getting right into this genre... http://tinyurl.com/pru2d and http://tinyurl.com/otevv

  • June 15, 2006, 9:04 a.m. CST

    okay, first of all...

    by havocSchultz

    i am a bava fan...mario and lamberto...and i like the way lamberto bava just rolls off the tongue...the name - not the man - i do not personally know the man - but is it just me or does the premise to his film - at least in basic form - sound kinda like A Blade in the Dark...a musician, or something, in a house - where multiple murders take place...and then some tennis balls down stairs or something...either way - if it's inspired by the other MoH, then they will probably be shorts - but who knows - even if the budget for them is half as much - that's still more than enough to make 4 full length italian horror films...so i'm pumped to see them - even if they can capture some of the fun and "brilliance" of some of the italian horror from yestersomething...

  • June 15, 2006, 9:06 a.m. CST

    Gotta love the Giallo 'n' Goremeisters

    by Brendon

    None of the others really up to Argento's standards, overall, though. Wonder why Italy produced so many good horror film directors? Shamelss plug for my blog: http://tinyurl.com/gm8yd

  • June 15, 2006, 9:10 a.m. CST

    And don'T forget Lamberto Bava's masterpiece

    by DerLanghaarige

    Princess Fantaghiro! But seriously, if he wants, he is able to make some great films!

  • June 15, 2006, 9:27 a.m. CST

    Hey Quint...

    by Boba Fat

    was "Blade in the Dark" set in a theatre with a guy in an owl mask? I rememeber that being quite a good one. i.e very gory, ridiculous plot and prog rock. You can't beat em!

  • June 15, 2006, 9:39 a.m. CST

    Boba...

    by havocSchultz

    no... i don't believe there being an owl mask in a Blade in th Dark... most of it took place in a "Producer's" house where the guy writing the score for a horror film is staying so he can write the score...which I believe also ends up being the score to A Blade in The Dark... and then some murder and mayhem happens...

  • June 15, 2006, 10:45 a.m. CST

    oh no, not more masters of horror...

    by chickychow

    hasn;t showtime taught us that bringing these guys back from the dead will only result in CRAP!?!?

  • June 15, 2006, 11:23 a.m. CST

    Yes, but will there be any Snakes on a plane?

    by R.C. the "Wise"

    That's all I care about. True Horror!

  • June 15, 2006, 11:23 a.m. CST

    Hey Boba...

    by Vegiterrorist

    You're thinking of STAGEFRIGHT (aka BLOODY BIRD, AQUARIUS)--great giallo directed by Argento's protoge, Michele Soavi, who also did the brilliant DELLAMORTE DELLAMORE (aka CEMETERY MAN). Hope this helps!

  • June 15, 2006, 11:28 a.m. CST

    Lamberto Bava's tribute to his father Mario's DIABOLIK

    by Harry Weinstein

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h0kRpXGJL9o Fun little video.

  • June 15, 2006, 11:33 a.m. CST

    Stagefright!!!

    by Boba Fat

    That was it. Thanks

  • June 15, 2006, 11:34 a.m. CST

    Vegiterrorist...

    by havocSchultz

    ...odd - cause Michele Soavi also had a small - but very pivotal part in A Blade in the Dark... dude gets around...

  • June 15, 2006, 11:51 a.m. CST

    Michele Soavi...

    by Vegiterrorist

    ...is also the masked demon/guy who hands out movie passes in Lamberto Bava's DEMONS. AND...he's the guy whose girfriend vomits up her insides in Fulci's CITY OF THE LIVING DEAD (aka GATES OF HELL). AND...he's a frequent collaborator/assistant director on Terry Gilliam's films. He does get around indeed!

  • June 15, 2006, 1:02 p.m. CST

    Hey-a, atsa' good-a news!

    by Doctor_Sin

    I love-a me some o' that Nightmare-Drenched-a Linguini!!! Hollywood needs-a to learn to me it-a movies like-a the Italians! Hey, atsa' matta' you, eh?

  • June 15, 2006, 3:03 p.m. CST

    Excellent news!

    by godhatesyou

    These guys have made some very good movies. I can't wait.

  • Sept. 15, 2006, 7:46 p.m. CST

    I just have to let everyone know about Imprint

    by cmcqueen02

    Inprint is coming out on DVD. If you are like me and cant wait to see it, follow this link and view a preview of the film. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hM7fhWeersI

  • Sept. 15, 2006, 8:02 p.m. CST

    Imprint coming out on DVD

    by cmcqueen02

    This is just a friendly reminder that Masters of Horror is coming out on DVD and that you can view the the preview at this link. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hM7fhWeersI