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Saturday, May 16, 2015

Don't Look Now (1973)

Sometime after the death of their daughter (Sharon Williams) from drowning, an art restorer (Donald Sutherland) and his wife (Julie Christie) travel to Venice where he will work on the restoration of a decaying church. It is there where they meet a pair of weird sisters. One (Clelia Matania) is normal but the other (Hilary Mason) is blind with psychic abilities. A series of random murders are occurring in the city that will ultimately touch them. Based on a novella by Daphne Du Maurier (REBECCA), Nicholas Roeg's film is a stylish mosaic (pun intended) of a puzzle, the fragments elegantly connected by the crackerjack editor, Graeme Clifford. All the proper clues are on display if we catch them but Roeg isn't just interested in a Gothic thriller. While it's the married couple's grief that is the elephant in the room, portents are ignored because they don't fit in the husband's logical universe and that will be his undoing. The film's still shocking ending is often dismissed as laughable by a small group of unbelievers but all things considered, not only is it the only satisfying ending but the only plausible one. It's not an invention of the film makers, it's there in the original Du Maurier souce material. The haunting underscore is by Pino Donaggio. With Massimo Serato and Leopoldo Trieste. 

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