You probably remember the “swooning new classic” Call Me By Your Name that emotionally devastated us in the early months of 2018. You also probably remember the director, Luca Guadagnino, who brought the movie to life. Now Guadagnino is back with another film that is vastly different from Call Me By Your Name: Suspiria. Where Call Me By Your Name is heart-wrenching and left you heartbroken for a questionable amount of time, the new trailer for Suspiria will keep you up at night with fear and intrigue. Elio (Timothée Chalamet) and Oliver (Armie Hammer) might have ripped your hearts out in the early months of 2018 but Susie (Dakota Johnson) and Madame Blanc (Swinton) will drag you into their dark world come October of this year, just in time for Halloween.
Suspiria is a remake of the 1977 mystery/horror film of the same name in which an American girl named Suzy, played by Jessica Harper, travels to Berlin to attend ballet school. However, viewers and Suzy alike both soon find out that nothing is as it seems – the ballet school is a coven. The original film earned critical acclaim with a 92% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a 79% rating on Metacritic.
Dakota Johnson stars as Susie Bannion who travels to a world-renowned dance company where she fascinates the artistic director, Madame Blanc (Swinton). The remake has been called a “bloody and relatively cold reimagining of Dario Argento’s 1977 horror movie” as well as “the stuff that gives people nightmares” despite the fact that there are only trailers out thus far.
So far only one trailer has been released on the 23rd of August and it creates more questions than it does answers, each second getting more unsettling and weird than the last. The setting is very dim and sepia-toned which is reminiscent of the 70s, when it is set. Arguably, the only real colour in the whole trailer is a luminescent “IN SESSION LAUFENDE SITZUNG!” (In Session, Current Session).
The first glimpse into the film is a disturbing monologue by Chloë Grace Moretz who plays Patricia Hingle. Patricia is seen on the floor, practically writhing, saying frightfully, “[Madame Blanc] wants to get inside of me,” before an image of Blanc herself is shown. The piano notes proceeding said monologue create some sort of tension which contrasts against Swinton’s smooth voice and the sharp dancing of Susie. Proceeding this, the creepiness escalates, showing images of distress contrasting the smooth voice of Blanc and the sharp movements of Susie. The trailer is fast-paced yet maintains the disturbing nature of the original film, one of the final images being a grotesque hand that seems to be burned in some way with overgrown nails.
On the 28th of August, a teaser clip was released, debuting a 2-minute clip from the movie entitled “Improvise Freely.” Swinton’s character discusses the theme of “rebirth” in dance and instructs Susie, the protagonist, to improvise her piece. Her voice is then almost drowned out by the almost jarring yet subtle background music as Susie seems to make the bones in her back ‘pop’ out of her skin. A nauseating, seemingly burnt hand appears with long, yellow nails. This image is soon replaced by one of Susie on the floor as she gasps, Madame Blanc watching her like a hawk. The final moments capture her looking away and her eyes seem to be completely void of anything human, almost like they’re glazed over.
The tagline for Suspiria is “give your soul to dance” which hints at the sinister secrets of the academy. I feel like this is one of those movies I will be both frightened by and drawn to, a sentiment expressed by Luca Guadagnino himself in an interview with Variety, “I have always loved the cinema of extremes.”
Photo via Amazon Studios