B-Movie Corner: Suspiria

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First Posted: 9/2/2014

Welcome to B-Movie corner where each week a cult film is examined and suggested beer pairings to enjoy while watching the film are given, what do you think the B stands for anyhow? This week in honor of the impending Halloween season, Dario Argento’s classic horror film Suspiria is examined.

The words fairy-tale and beautiful are rarely used when describing a horror film, but with Suspiria, it is hard not to first notice the artistic direction that the film undertook from Italian director Dario Argento. The film engulfs the viewer into a world not unlike Alice in Wonderland and is full of beautiful images full of color and imagination but quickly the screen is filled with blood and extreme carnage, leaving viewers in a surreal state of wonder and horror.

The film follows Suzy Bannan, an American ballet dancer, as she arrives at a very prestigious ballet school in Freiberg, Germany. Almost immediately upon her arrival unexplainable events begin to occur around her, namely people being a murdered.

A former student is the first to be murdered with many more to come. However, Suspiria is far from a slasher film and is much more intellectual in its approach to the on screen murders, regardless of how bizarre they are at times, a room full of razor edged wire?

The film has a dream like quality around it causing the viewer to feel the unease and beauty within the atmosphere of the film. Grisly images of a student being disemboweled are shot against grand hallways with heavy splashes of color throughout, giving the impression that the director is using the film as a canvas upon which to paint twisted nightmares.

While some have complained about the films choppy quality with regards to the plot or character development, the overarching theme of the film is intact. The film builds in suspense throughout and culminates in a final scene that will truly leave you on the edge of your seat, making truth out of the films infamous tagline: The only thing more terrifying than the last 12 minutes of this film are the first 92.

The film has developed a loyal cult following since its original release in 1977 and is highly regarded as one of the best horror films ever made in the history of cinema with many film critics. The films popularity has grown so much since its release that a remake was planned in 2013, but the plans for this have been put on hold indefinitely.

Final Verdict: Suspiria is an absolute classic horror film and is must see film for fans of horror! Very few films effect viewers on such a surreal level, but if you give Suspiria a chance it will quickly become an unforgettable film.

Where can I get it? : Luckily this film is fairly easy to find on DVD at many retailers such as Best Buy, Barnes & Noble, and Walmart. If you are having issues finding the DVD in a physical storefront it is also available at Amazon.com.

Suggested Beer Pairing: Any horror film will bring about the thoughts of Halloween and thus fall, which means one thing, pumpkin beers and with a film like this it’s best to go with Imperial Pumpkin Ales. Some of the best to try are: Weyerbacher Brewing Company: Imperial Pumpkin Ale; Longtrail Brewing Co.- Imperial Pumpkin; Harpoon Brewery- Imperial Pumpkin; Saucony Creek Brewing Company- Maple Mistress; Avery Brewing Company- Rumpkin; and Southern Tier Brewing Co.- Pumking. However, if you are not a pumpkin beer fan another great style to choose is the Amber Ale, the red color from the malt and subtle hoppy characteristics are a perfect match for the onscreen blood, some highlights in this style are: AleSmith- Evil Dead Red; Ninkasi Brewing Co. – Dawn of the Red; Great Lakes Brewing- Nosferatu; and Tröegs Brewing Company- Hopback Amber Ale.